The Lesson From A Spoiled Smoothie
I am a people pleaser. I was taught from an early age that you focus on what others want, keep everyone happy and always put yourself last.
In my adult life, I have learned that this isn’t the most optimum way to live your life. But, old rules are hard to break and it’s a constant challenge for me to be aware of my people pleasing ways and communicate openly.
My boyfriend makes amazing smoothies. He’ll whip up delicious mixes of fruit and yogurt in the blender then pour them into glasses. I quietly guzzle the healthy, tasty beverage. Perhaps this is why he makes them–I’m quiet for a few minutes…hmmm…
Anyways, I went out to lunch with a friend one afternoon and came home to find a smoothie waiting for me in the fridge. I wasn’t hungry so I said I’d leave it until the following day to drink.
That day arrived and I open the fridge to dive headfirst into the smoothie. I take one sip and my face scrunches up. The smoothie tastes weird and awful.
But, my people pleasing self thinks, “I can’t let him know that I don’t like the smoothie. What if his feelings are hurt and he doesn’t like me anymore?”
Yes people, this is where my mind goes. To say I am ridiculous is an understatement.
So, instead of pouring it out, I put the smoothie back in the fridge and leave it there.
He comes into the kitchen later in the day and asks if I’m going to drink the rest of the smoothie. He can tell I took a drink earlier. I say that I’m too full and he is welcome to have at it.
He takes one sip and then comes into the room where I am sitting and says, “This smoothie is sour!”
I quietly say, “I know!”
He says, “Then why didn’t you just throw it away, nerdo?”
I say, “Because I didn’t want to hurt your feelings.”
He then replies with, “You are the absolute best communicator in the world!”
I giggle uncontrollably at this because I know he’s being sarcastic and I suddenly feel incredibly awkward and insecure at the truth of the situation.
While this post isn’t going to share with you any life altering people-pleaser fixes, it is a prime example of why open communication is so important.
All I had to say was, “This smoothie tastes sour. It must have gone bad since yesterday” and then tossed it.
By thinking I was protecting feelings, I instead created a larger problem and possibly some gastrointestinal distress for my loving, caring boyfriend.
Think about this the next time you try to protect feelings–in a relationship or with your customers. You may just be making bigger problems for everyone involved!