What’s up with your need for approval?

Updated: Sep 13

InnerShe, Life Coach & Support for Grief, Growth, Empowerment

Article by Cintia Mancuso, MSW | Life Coach & Grief Counselor

Have you ever felt like there are people out there that no matter what you do, they will never show they like you? We all seem to have an intrinsic need to be liked by others, to be accepted and validated. Is it wrong to expect our parents to love, accept us or validate us? What about our partner or our children? The truth is we are human, and we crave belonging, love and respect. We are not likely to walk around life being disrespectful, irritable, and hostile. We want to belong to a family, a community a circle, so we curve our behavior, thoughts, and values to fit ourselves in a place we want to belong. If they approve, we feel safe. 

1. Pay attention to what negative thoughts you are having.

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These include, “she will think, what if, I am an…, he thinks, I can’t, and more like these. When you start a thought with these words, they are bound to cause anxiety and negate your true and genuine nature.

2. Think about what these thoughts mean to you. 

The above thoughts such as she won’t like me or if I do this, they will reject me are the root of your need for approval. You are assuming the worst possible scenario about a certain situation without thinking if this has anything to do with what you want or desire to do. Therefore, you negate your ability to stand up for your thoughts and values. A simple realization such as this can be key in helping you dominate your need for approval.

3. Examine the evidence of the logic in your thoughts. 

Are you really a bad person? Are you really in the wrong for thinking this way, perhaps you and the other person simply have different thoughts and information? Always question your reasoning.