Use EFT To Release the Anxiety of People Pleasing

Written by: Nick Ortner

Overwhelming-EmotionsSo you’re trying to people-please, huh? How fun is it? Have you been able to keep everyone happy? Recently I’ve been struggling with this and thought I’d share my thoughts and what I’ve done to change my perspective.

I’ve mentioned two things in my email leading to this blog post…

1. Trying to Keep Everyone Happy
2. Learning to Say “No”

In a lot of ways they can be separate issues, but they have a lot of connections to people-pleasing, so we’ll address them together. Just last week I was feeling a tremendous amount of pressure and stress, and since I don’t love that feeling and know that there’s a way to shift it, I started digging deep to find out what it was really about.

What’s interesting about this issue is that it’s not always so obvious. If your back hurts, you know that’s a problem. If you’re angry about something that happened last week, you know to focus on that. If you feel financial pressure, you know that’s the issue.

But I wasn’t really clear as to WHY I was feeling stressed…

Especially since when I looked around at everything that was happening in my life, it was all GOOD things…AMAZING things in fact, that I am so grateful for.

For example:

1. I just wrapped up the first draft of my new book, to be published by Hay House in April of next year. It was a thrilling process to write it, amazing things happened and I’ve grown so much from the process and have such high hopes for the book (and more importantly, the message it carries)

2. This weekend, I’ll be speaking at a Hay House event in San Jose, and sharing the stage with the people I’ve followed, learned from and loved for years, Louise Hay, Wayne Dyer, and Cheryl Richardson.

3. Next month, we’re launching the 4th year of the Tapping World Summit. An event that has grown from nothing to over 300,000 people last year.

4. I have the honor, privilege, and joy to communicate with YOU, over 300,000 of you.

5. Every day I worked with an amazing team (most of them my family members!), I read emails of amazing life transformations and people using this powerful technique to change their lives.

6. I could argue that my personal life is going even better. I’m getting married this fall to the love of my life, have amazing friends and an incredible family.

My life is COOL… very, very, very, so grateful, so happy, so amazing, need to help others make this happen COOL kinda life.

SO….why was I SO stressed out…overwhelmed…and a little bit miserable last week?

I thought about all those amazing things in my life, trying to be grateful, but it wasn’t cutting it. Something else was going on. And when I took a deep breath and focused on what was stressing me out the most, the issue of having to please everyone came up.

Let’s take a look at everything that IS amazing in my life, and see how I was turning it around:

1. The book: Will people like it? Will the readers be happy? Will Hay House be happy with the results of the book?

2. Speaking this weekend: There are 2,000 people…will they like what I have to say? Will they get value from my talk?

3. The Tapping World Summit: It’s been such a huge hit…can we do it again this year? Will our partners who promote it be happy with the results? Will the listeners be happy with everything we’ve worked so hard on?

4. The People Who Get My Emails: Yes, that’s right. This one is about YOU. I was stressed about making you happy. (How nice of me, right?) I deeply value and treasure the relationship I have with the 300,000 + people that get my emails. It’s an honor to be able to communicate with you. And I want to keep YOU happy. Which is easier said than done when there are 300,000 different people, having different experiences, wanting different things! So I was asking myself: Are people enjoying what I’m sharing? I want to give them more tapping content, but I need to find more hours in the day!

5. My amazing team: Are they happy? What else can I do to keep them motivated, to communicate better, to connect with them more?

6. I actually wasn’t stressed out at all with my personal life. 🙂

But those first five items, these incredible things that were going on in my life, were actually weighing me down.

I felt a lot of pressure.

Do you ever feel this people-pleasing pressure?

The pressure to keep your friends and family happy. Maybe the pressure to perform at work, or simply the pressure to meet expectations.

Oftentimes, this pressure, often self-created, comes from the delusion that it’s YOUR responsibility to make everyone around you happy. I think part of this is built into human nature, we want the people around us to be happy, with us and with their lives. But beyond that instinct, it’s easy to take it to another level, where it’s just not healthy.

We create these expectations for what we have to do. We create this picture of having to be perfect. We want to people-please! And this is where the need to say “no” comes in. Life is busy, there’s no arguing that. And it seems like it’s just getting busier, so at some point, you’re going to have to say “no” to something. There has to be a limit to what you can do IF you expect to have true happiness and joy in your life.

The funny thing is that as things get better, as you find more success, you’ll have more opportunities and more things to say “no” to. I’ve worked with a lot of people on finding more financial success in their lives and one of the things that come up, again and again, is the fear that if they get what they want, they’ll be busier and thus more unhappy! But I digress, that’s a whole other issue we can chat about some other time. 🙂

So, making people happy and being able to say “no”. They obviously go hand-in-hand because sometimes when you say “no” to something, it can make people unhappy!

The solution

Well… you saw this coming… you’ve gotta tap on it. What I did last week is to make a list of the things I was feeling pressure about and then tapped through them, some general, some more specific. A general tapping round looks like this:

(If you’re not familiar with the EFT process, you can learn the basics here:

Tune in to the feeling of having to keep everyone happy. Feel it in your body. Is there an emotion there? Can you feel some resentment or anger? Do you feel pressure? Is it overall stress?

Give the feeling a number on a 0-10 scale and then let’s tap on it.

Karate Chop: Even though I have to keep everyone around me happy…I deeply and completely accept myself…
Karate Chop: Even though I feel all this pressure to keep everyone happy…I deeply and completely accept myself…
Karate Chop: Even though I’m stressed out about keeping everyone happy…I choose to relax now.

Eyebrow: I’ve got to keep everyone happy…
Side of the Eye: All this pressure to keep everyone happy…
Under the Eye: How am I going to pull this off…
Under the Nose: There’s so much to do…
Under the Mouth: And so much pressure to do it right…
Collarbone: What if people are unhappy with me…
Under the Arm: I want to please people….
Top of the Head: I want them to be happy with me…

Take a deep breath – if your number hasn’t dropped yet, do another round.

Then, when you feel a shift, you can move on to some positive tapping…

Eyebrow: It’s time to relax about this issue…
Side of the Eye: It’s not my responsibility to keep everyone happy…
Under the Eye: Their happiness is not under my control…
Under the Nose: I can only control what I do, and I can only do my best…
Under the Mouth: Releasing this need to be perfect…
Collarbone: Releasing this need to make everyone happy…
Under the Arm: Letting it all go…
Top of the Head: Letting it all go now….

This is obviously a very general tapping round. REMEMBER: If something else comes up, a specific event, emotions, or belief that you have, focus on that issue specifically until you clear it. Just a clue to look out for: we often develop these patterns early in life, so if you’re doing this general tapping about keeping people in your life happy now and you start to remember about how you tried to please Mom or Dad, perhaps how you tried to make them happy so they wouldn’t fight or be stressed…know that that’s an important topic to address.

If you want to clear the underlying people-pleasing pattern forever, going deep into those childhood roots is where you will most often have the most powerful and lasting results. It’s not always easy to go there, but you can do it. 🙂

Let’s do a little more general tapping on not being able to say “no”

Karate Chop: Even though I just can’t say no to people, I deeply and completely accept myself…
Karate Chop: Even though I feel all this pressure, I have to say yes, I deeply and completely accept myself….
Karate Chop: Even though I’m scared to say “no”, I want people to like me…I deeply and completely accept myself…

Eyebrow: I just can’t say no…
Side of the Eye: I want to do all these things…
Under the Eye: And I want to make everyone happy…
Under the Nose: I don’t want to disappoint anyone…
Under the Mouth: So I just can’t say no…
Collarbone: My issue with saying no…
Under the Arm: Why can’t I say no?
Top of the Head: I wonder where this old pattern started…

Take a deep breath – if your number hasn’t dropped yet, do another round.

When you feel a shift, you can move on to some positive tapping…

Eyebrow: It’s time to relax about this issue…
Side of the Eye: It’s safe to say no…
Under the Eye: I can say no and people will still like me…
Under the Nose: I can’t control what people will think of me…
Under the Mouth: I choose to release this pressure to say no…
Collarbone: Releasing this need to say yes…
Under the Arm: Letting it all go…
Top of the Head: Letting it all go now….

Take a deep breath… and let it go…

Again, these rounds of EFT are just to get things started for you. Focus on YOUR specific issues. Who are you trying to keep happy? Why? When did this pattern start? Is it a healthy pattern? Or do you suffer because of it? Do you have trouble saying “no”? Why? What would happen if you said “no”? When did this pattern start?

These are all questions to get you thinking…answer them with a pen and paper, focus on the specifics, and then tap through the emotions, events, and limiting beliefs.

So… needless to say, I did a lot of tapping and felt a tremendous amount of relief. I was able to enjoy these amazing things happening in my life right now. The reality is that I’m doing the best I can, and while I certainly have the intention to make the people around me happy, I’m not willing to sacrifice my personal happiness to do so and I understand that at the end of the day, their happiness is their responsibility.

Ahhhh…..much better. 🙂


Share your comments below: Who are you trying to make happy? What are your patterns around not being able to say “no”? Did you feel a shift with the tapping? What have you identified that you want to continue to work on?

Please take the time to comment, not only because it means the world to me (makes me know you’re happy and I need that!!! Just kidding!), but more importantly, your comments, stories, and ideas might really help someone else get more clear on their issues.


Blog Comments

Leave a Comment

Your Comment

80 Comments on this post

  1. Marie says:

    Nick, Thank you again for helping me tap through some tense moments in my work day. I’m book-marking this one. Be blessed!

  2. Francis says:

    Please consider doing a YouTube video of yourself or yourself and someone else using this Tapping script. Then put a link to it on this page. I find it very helpful to tap along with something like that and to rewind it if necessary. It is much easier than using a written script. Thanks

  3. catie says:

    Thank you.

  4. Celeste Foresta says:

    I admire your success at what you do, Nick, and am so grateful for what you share and the way you do it. You and your sister, Jessica, carry us right along, bringing us to our very best selves.

  5. Shae says:

    This topic is guiding me with being able to stand up and acknowledging myself after years of being a “yes person”. Thank you

  6. Noreen says:

    Thanks Nick, I am new to EFT and am finding it so helpful. I am a Christian and having to overcome teaching about such things. However I can see how God has given us these tools to use, just as He has enabled scientists to produce medication and find out other medical and surgical solutions.
    There is such a lot of should’s and shouldn’t we carry as well as responsibilities. So many things put on us as children. I’m beginning to se the way through without negating my Christian faith. Thank you again

  7. Bernie says:

    Oh No! To No or not to No that is the question (quest I’m on;-)I’ve been working on this issue for a long time & it’s onlt recently that I’ve realised that I have a tendancy to go into brain freeze/out of body mode, when faced with this question. I often don’t realise I’ve *gone there* until after the event & as a result, it’s only with hindsight that I’ll remember I had an option to say No. Lots of meaty stuff to tap on there <3

  8. Carolyn Long says:

    Hi Nick: I find tapping great, but when the big issues come up it is hard to release on your own.

  9. Elaine Barbeler says:

    Hi Nick,
    What perfect timing your blog on keeping others happy. I found an issue,a deep old issue that I need to keep men happy, particularly powerful men happy, to feel safe. It was an old program from my childhood re my father. His influence was powerful strong and controlling and I needed to keep him happy so I was not physically punished and emotionally abused. The patttern has followed me all my life and it has come up this week and with all the work I have already done I was able to see it and work through it with tapping.
    Many blessings Elaine

  10. Jared says:

    Love the blog. I’ve been using tapping for a long time to eliminate baggage and instill new belief systems. Keep up the good work.

  11. Karolyn Hardaway says:

    I’m new to tapping, but what I’ve heard is exciting. Thanks for getting the summit together

  12. Beverly Compton says:

    Dear Nick, My copier is not working so I had to write out the scripts . I take them to work and we read them aloud….my hospital co-workers are not tapping yet but I MAKE them read the scripts and I know we are getting thru to them….it’s just a matter of time. It is not convient to listen to the conference so I will be ordering the set tonight. I have 2010 and 2011 and didn’t feel I needed 2012 but you give so much information during the year that I want to support your efforts and projects. I also got alot out of the previous conference material and I know I will enjoy 2012. Thanks for all the effort you and your sister put forth….many blessings for you both and the rest of your staff.—–Beverly

  13. Lynette says:

    Hi Nick
    I’m the sort of person who has always given of myself, it makes me feel good about myself but sometimes I have felt I did’nt always get a good deal. I have been through grief in my life. I lost my son to suicide 12 yrs ago and I just have’t felt the same enthusiasm for life since. I procrastinate I worry alot and I can’t make decisions easily. I dont even have the same strength to do the things I used to enjoy like painting etc. I came across your website on Tapping and it sounds really great. If I can stick with it maybe it could just help me!

  14. wealth creator says:

    i feel the need to make my family especially my parents happy. this is because i feel and know i have let them down terribly in many ways. i feel the need to redeem myself and show my parents that i am now a responsible man. They continually do their best for me and i pray that i will be able to show appreciation and gratitude.

  15. maureen says:

    Hi Nick
    I have a very unusal concern. I seem to be connected to another person’s spirit and when he is in pain I feel it to the point of being unable to function. Even if he is 10,000 miles away and I haven’t seen or heard from him in months I still am incapacitated. The only things I have found that works is a ultraviolet light around him and tapping. Thank you for another option as this has been very disconserting. It gives a whole new meaning to making someone happy.

  16. Cimenya says:

    Thank you Nick…..this one in 300,000 thou is happy w/ you 🙂 🙂 I came to the same realization last week (b4 I found your site) that I simply HAVE to stop promising to do things ….for anyone & everyone. Yes….I had reached overload to the max. Whew! Anyway….must fulfill obligations but no more promises. So when I saw your article & tapping sol’n ….I really related. I just watched your movie trailer & your video tapping w/ Natasha….very powerful….brought out incredible sadness for me……..I’ve been tapping for about 15 yrs or so & have had amazing results. I learned a different method than you do & when I first heard you demo your method about a year ago….I loved it…..& I use it often. Thank you. Wishing you & your bride infinite love, light & happiness.

  17. zen says:

    Thank you Nick, keep your email coming. The script really helped,

  18. Garry says:

    Hi Nick
    Have tried tapping many times, do not notice any different feelings. I do not think it works.

  19. Martina says:

    Thanks, Nick!
    it´s not only wanting to make everyone happy, it´s also the fear (from childhood) to be punished and not be loved anymore…so I can tap a little longer. But what a good feeling of release bit by bit.

  20. Chris says:

    Thank you Nick
    I have been feeling overwhelmed and ‘running on empty’ for a while now. Feeling the need to fill my own cup. I know this has come about because of my feeling the need to fulfill everyone else’s needs. I know I have a lot of work to do – and this seemes to be a good strating point. Even in responding to you I am feeling the need to make other respondents happy by making a similar response!!!! How sad am I and how much work do I need to do!! Hopefully I will get started soon before my engine blows.
    Love xx

  21. gerrie says:

    thank you
    It was just what I needed !

  22. chloe sainte-claire says:

    Just what I needed, just when I needed it. Thank you, Nick!!!

  23. Cheryl says:

    THIS IS SO TIMELY for me!! I run a customer service oriented business and lately I have realized that I am over-promising and being vague about deadlines and then tap dancing as fast as I can to please everyone when the being vague catches up with me and experiencing sleepless night and pretty severe anxiety during the day, so THANK YOU Nick, going to try this TODAY!!!! Thanks Again so needed to read this!

  24. Joy says:

    Many thanks Nick my children are always telling me that I have a big heart and a mouth to match that says yes when it should say no so now I will be able to say no when it’s not in the best intrests of my health and wellbeing, without feeling guilty

  25. Gwen says:

    When you say you might have to go deeper. Do you mean tapping longer? Saying something different? How do you go deeper? Have fun this weekend!

  26. J R Shirrell says:

    YES I desire to say you have changed my life. Thank YOU Nick !

  27. J R Shirrell says:

    Must I say thank you… ” NO “. I am truly grateful for your simplification of a really tough time I have just gone through in my Life. Your HELP in doing EFT and making it something I now do on a daily basis (at least once of even more often a day), I am finding it much easier to take a deep breath and fully feel it relaxing me. I do honestly want to THANK YOU for helping me to understand EFT more fully for balance in my life.

  28. Cal-Ling says:

    Thanks Nick….timely reminder to tap into the bigger picture.

  29. Sandy says:

    You brought EFT into my life with last year’s Summit. I have since studied many procedures for releasing emotional baggage, but EFT is my mainstay. I always fall back to tapping. It is what helps me the most. You deserve to enjoy every ounce of goodness that is coming to you, as I’m sure all 300,000 of us would agree. I wish you the absolute peace of mind that you so definitely deserve.

  30. Sandy says:

    Thank you, Nick! This came with perfect timing. My son just returned from Marine training and there is a lot of tension between him and his father. I, of course, feel absolute responsibility to keep them both happy so there won’t be any fighting. This hasn’t worked before, and I doubt it will work this time. They need to address their own issues and I need to stay out of it. I believe this feeling I have goes way back into my childhood, because I feel like a child whenever people are arguing, and I want to hide. I try tapping on those earlier emotions, but the problem is that I have few actual memories of my childhood. I believe I have blocked out most of those memories in order to “protect” myself. I want to remember so I can tap on specific events. How do I unlock those memories in order to clear them?

Over 20 Million Tapping Meditations Played in Our App! Get Instant Access to our "Releasing Anxiety" and "Sleep Support: Quiet The Racing Mind" Tapping meditations.
Yes, I agree to receive email messages from The Tapping Solution & understand that I can unsubscribe at any time. Privacy Policy.

Connect With Us on Social Media

Follow The Tapping Solution on Facebook or Instagram!

Follow the producer of the Tapping World Summit Nick Ortner on Facebook or Instagram!

Follow the host of the Tapping World Summit Jessica Ortner on Facebook or Instagram!

Follow the producer of the Annual Tapping World Summit Alex Ortner on Facebook or Instagram!

Close ×
Over 17 Million Tapping Meditations Played in Our App!
Get Instant Access to our "Releasing Anxiety" and "Sleep Support: Quiet The Racing Mind" Tapping meditations.
Yes, I agree to receive email messages from The Tapping Solution & understand that I can unsubscribe at any time. Privacy Policy.