We all know of someone who seems to be “thin skinned.” Or maybe you are more familiar with a “people pleaser.” Both are behaviors of codependency. What is that you ask? Let me explain.
Merriam-Webster broadly defines codependency as “dependence on the needs of or control by another.” Some people need the approval of others in order to feel adequate. They will typically “try too hard” to gain acceptance so they don’t feel like a disappointment. Putting the needs and wants of others before their own is a regular occurrence. Don’t misunderstand, there is absolutely nothing wrong with extending kindness to another human being. However, when you are always trying to please others, you lose yourself along the way and are now coping with codependency.
According to an article published in the International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction, there are typically four primary themes of codependent behavior. These include a propensity to focus on others, trouble recognizing or expressing emotions, self-sacrifice, and a need for control. Let’s take a more specific look at what some of those signs look like.
- Self-worth that is dependent on the opinions of others
- Regularly apologizing or taking blame
- Avoiding conflict
- Ignoring one’s own wants/desires
- Feeling guilty about doing something for yourself
- Saying or doing things to keep the peace or make someone happy even though they are things you don’t want to do
Keep in mind that some of these things are normal acts of human behavior. When these behaviors become unhealthy is when actions of these sorts are excessive and start affecting your psychological well-being.
Coping with Codependency at Garrett
Our therapists at Garrett will help you dive in and explore the causes of your codependent behaviors. Triggers will be identified, and coping skills will be taught so you can manage these troubling traits in a healthy way. Your mental well-being is important to us. We have multiple locations as well as online appointments available. Call us today at (256) 239-5662, or click here to provide some brief information, and one of our care members will contact you shortly.