Always Seeking Approval

Do you find that you often say “yes” to things that you’ll regret or resent later, but you do it because you don’t want to disappoint someone? Do you find you hesitate to buy certain things, wear certain outfits, or do something that you want because you don’t know if it’s the “right” choice?

We naturally seek social validation because we, as humans, are a community-based species. But, constantly seeking validation for everything is exhausting. This week, we’re exploring how we can find that balance.
Person with a tie-dye hoodie doing a thumbs up for approval

Table of Contents

The Idea of the Week

In this 30-minute video, Dr. K from HealthyGamerGG interviews a community member about emotional dependence, doubt, and constantly seeking validation. The interviewee shares their life experience on these topics.

Together, Dr. K and the interviewee delve into how this manifested in their life and how to stop relying on others’ validation: first, by letting the “guard dog,” referring to our anxiety and doubt, to stand watch while we do something that we feel we need validation for, then checking in with the “guard dog” and asking “was it okay that we did this thing?” (Dr. K shares more about this technique at timestamp 19:15 in the video).

The Practice of the Week

In this 15-minute TEDx Talk, Cameron Versluis shares his “life recipe” for meeting our social validation needs without being weighed down by it:

  1. Monitor. Ask yourself these 5 questions when you lose someone’s approval over a period of time, then look back at your responses and find patterns.
    1. What happened leading to the loss of approval?
    2. How did I feel?
    3. What did I expect to feel?
    4. Why did I feel that way?
    5. What can I do about it?
  2. Ingredients. Remove the “bad ingredients” from your life; these are the people or social groups that do not fulfill you, but you may spend a lot of time with. Then add more of the “good ingredients” into your life; these are the people or social groups that do fulfill you.
  3. Share your recipe with others so they can help you build it.

Here are a few more journaling prompts to help you find where your struggles come from:

  1. What experiences shaped me into a people pleaser?
  2. What are my specific fears when saying no? Is it fear of conflict? Rejection? Criticism?
  3. If I say no to this person, what is the worst thing that can happen?
  4. How will saying yes to this impact me? Will I have less time for my priorities? Will it cause burnout?
  5. What personal needs often go unmet because of my people-pleasing habit?
  6. What are the disadvantages of being a people-pleaser?
  7. When I agree to attend an event I prefer not to go to, how does that make me feel? How can I change that?
  8. How can I better balance my needs and people’s requests?

Saying “no” can be difficult for a number of reasons, so here is a list of 102 ways to politely say “no.” Remember that saying “no” does not make you selfish.

What are your tips for saying “no” or holding boundaries? Hit reply and let us know, or share with us on our Facebook or Instagram page!

News of the Week

Internet Safety
Psychoeducation Virtual Workshop
November 11, 2023

In this workshop, your child will learn age-appropriate information about navigating the internet and how interact with others on the internet safely.

Space is limited to 8 people per group.
Cost: $50, partial scholarships available
Register by November 3, 2023

Register here!

Meg Tobin, LMHC is now an End of Life Doula!

End-of-life doulas provide emotional and physical support, education about the dying process, preparation for what’s to come, and guidance while grieving. Though Meg is not doing traditional doula work, she will work with end-of-life clients and their families utilizing ketamine. 


OVS may be able to help if you have unreimbursed crime-related expenses, such as medical bills, counseling costs, and funeral expenses, or assist with loss of earnings or support. They can help pay for therapy for crime victims, including Ketamine-Assisted Psychotherapy!

Find out more!

Unlocking Your Mind:
A Journey to Self-Discovery

Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy Retreat

Two Ketamine Journeys—lots of deep dives into experiential therapy incorporating meditation, writing, art making, yoga, and other body-centered modalities. Step away from the stressors of daily life and fully immerse yourself in the therapeutic process. We will use Ketamine and experiential therapy to break through the stuck places to find more freedom, pace, and motivation!
Zoom Preparation Session: Thursday, October 26th from 6-8 pm.
In-person: Thursday, November 2nd from 4-9 pm.
In-person: Friday, November 3rd from 8:30 am-8 pm.
In-person: Saturday, November 4th from 9 am-5 pm.
In-person: Sunday, November 5th from 8am to 9am.
Zoom Integration Session: Thursday, November 9th from 6-8 pm.

Learn more

You may be able to finance the retreat. Use the QR Code below to see if you prequalify!

Join Tati, back by popular demand, for her next series of Family Constellations and Sharing of Ancestral Knowledge Workshops!

Tati owns a healing and psychotherapy practice working with sacred plant medicine, ancestral healing, and art therapy in her home in Ecuador.

In April, Tati visited the U.S. for the first time to hold workshops and healing sessions in Erieville and Fayetteville, NY, all of which had such a positive reception that people requested more! Join Tati for her return in October and the next series of workshops and healing sessions.

Family Constellations is a type of therapeutic approach that focuses on exploring the dynamics within a person’s family system, including their relationships with parents, siblings, grandparents, and other family members, even ancestors. This approach can be used to address a variety of issues, such as relationship difficulties, emotional blocks, and unresolved traumas.

This workshop involves a group of participants who come together to explore their own family dynamics through a series of exercises and discussions led by our facilitator, Tatian Davila, a psychotherapist, healer, and seeker of ancestral knowledge. Tati will offer 2 workshops as well as individual healings. The workshops will be held at Breathing Space Studio in Erieville, NY.

The Family Constellations Workshop will be held on October 28, 2023, from 10 am to 4 pm. 

The Sharing of Ancestral Knowledge Workshop will be held on October 29, 2023, from 10 am to 4 pm.

Both workshops will be held at Breathing Space Studio
3455 Erieville Road
Erieville, NY 13061

Individual Healing Sessions will be held in Fayetteville, NY from October 30th through November 3rd.

Register here

The Thought of the Week

Wishing you a peaceful week!


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