4 Ways to Stop Being a Pushover

· May 3, 2016

Have you ever found yourself doing something that you didn’t want to do just to please someone else?

Some people are overly accommodating because they don’t want anyone to get angry at them. This is quite a negative pattern of behavior. If you’re not careful, at some point you might start to feel lost.

“One of the most liberating things we can learn in life is that we don’t have to like anybody, not everybody has to like us, and that’s okay.”


When being a pushover is a problem

  • When you start to accept things that you don’t want to just to keep everyone happy and have an “easier” life.
  • When you feel uncomfortable with the situations you’re involved in because you feel like you’re violating your principles.
  • When you feel tired of putting everyone else before yourself and you don’t want to feel like you don’t do anything for yourself anymore.
  • When you make excuses because you feel bad saying no.
girl holding flowers

How to stop being a pushover

1. Accept that not everyone will like you.

Sorry to break the illusionbut there will always be people who don’t feel any particular affinity towards you. This isn’t good or bad, it’s just a fact of life.

When you feel tempted to be overly obliging so that they’ll accept you, stop. Breathe and focus on something else.

People who try to please everyone all the time tend to have a low self-esteemThat’s why they want others to acknowledge them so badly.

The best way to stop trying to please others is to learn to love who you are and work on your self-esteem.

“If you live to please others, everyone will love you except you.”

-Paulo Coelho-

2. Learn to say “no” when you don’t feel like doing something

This simple word creates a lot of problems when we avoid saying it.

Are you one of those people who wouldn’t even give a negative response? Do you feel tired and angry because you have less and less time for yourself? Learn to say no!

Don’t worry, nobody will die and the world won’t end if you stop saying yes to everyone. The most that could happen is the people who use you for their own gain will leave. Think about it. It’s not as bad as it might seem at first.

You should also forget about making excuses. Just be honest and respond with a sincere “no.” If the other person tries to convince you otherwise, explain to them why you said no.

3. Identify the reasons why you feel guilty

The first few times you refrain from being a pushover, you’ll feel guilty

Instead of changing your response, think about what made you feel that way. Maybe you feel like you’re being selfish, or like you’re failing the other person. Then, think about the reasons why you didn’t want to be a pushover and compare the two.

girl on rock

For example, imagine that your sister asked you to babysit her children because she wants to go to the movies with her husband. But you had plans to go out with a friend that day. Would it really be so bad to say no to your sister? It would be worth changing your plans if your sister had to go to the hospital for an emergency, but maybe not if she wanted to go out on a date.

All you need to do is evaluate the situations and don’t feel guilty for being yourself. If you feel unsure, make a list of the pros and cons of your decision.

4. Leave the door open for those who want to leave

Once you stop being so submissive, you’ll see your list of friends decrease. Don’t worry about it. This will only show you the difference between your true friends and the ones who are only interested in taking advantage of you.

You’ll see that as your self-esteem improves, the negative and toxic people will leave from your life. The good news is that the right people will take their place.

In the case of a family member wanting to take advantage of you, all you have to do is set limits. It doesn’t matter if it’s your mother, son, or brother, you must value your decisions. It will be hard, but you’ll avoid feeling used and you’ll develop an incredible inner peace.

“Let life flow, and you’ll find doors where you least expect it.”


Remember that it’s a process to be less submissive. You need to learn some behaviors and let go of others. Don’t worry, it’s not impossible, and you won’t turn into a bad person. Just be yourself.