Once the client has awareness of his tendency to over-accommodate, he can begin to explore his feelings and to imagine his life differently.Occasionally the client will discover underlying factors that drive the over-accommodating behavior such as low self-esteem, the need to please others, or a fear of saying no.Walking with your client through four steps will support the client in making the needed changes to his or her beliefs and behaviors.In order for the client to be able to move forward, first he must recognize he is over-accommodating.Putting the needs, wants and desires of others before your own at the expense of your emotional and physical health might be preventing you from living the life you desire.This does not mean one should disregard the feelings and needs of others completely; it means one should examine how the perspective of accommodating others is supporting or hindering us in life. Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines accommodating as, “willing to please: helpful, obliging.” The list of related words includes “over-indulgent” and “permissive”.Another good tool for creating awareness is journaling.Asking your client to journal the week’s key activities and feelings can help the client see in black and white how often he is accommodating others at the expense of his own happiness.
If assertiveness allows us to thrive and to avoid the negative effects of over-accommodating, then why don’t more people do it?
Some signs that one might be over-accommodating include: To know what you prefer, instead of humbly saying Amen to what the world tells you you ought to prefer, is to have kept your soul alive.
– Robert Louis Stevenson If you find yourself high on the scale of accommodating or are experiencing any of the signs of over-accommodating, you might want to look at your perspective. Could there be different approach that would support us in living a life of fulfillment.
After exploring beliefs and consciously making the decision to live differently, the client is ready to shift his perspective.
This will require strength and persistence on the part of the client.