“I’m pretty easy going.” “I just kinda go with the flow.” “It’s just whatever works.”
Folks say this stuff a lot. And apparently, these types of answers are applicable to a lot of different types of questions: “Well, what did you want to do for a date?” “What made you stay quiet about that?” “How do you want to carry yourself in this breakup?” “What is your role/dynamic with your partner(s)?”
I’ve found that most of us are (usually accidentally) lying. Most of us really aren’t that “easy going.: I also want to know when it was that we all began putting “easy going” up on a pedestal? Since when is that such a sought after characteristic? Personally, I find a person really attractive who hold opinions and desires, and makes them well known.
I’ve come to find that most of my clients fall into 1 of 2 categories when it comes to being “so go with the flow.” Usually folks are 1) People Pleasing, or 2) Don’t actually know or have a preference. Sometimes, someone is a Unicorn and 3) Actually doesn’t care. If this is you, let’s meet and I’ll do a case study (kidding).
The People Pleaser
The People pleasers (or ‘Don’t Rock the Boat’ types) actually have opinions or preferences, but don’t speak them aloud too much. You really want Thai for dinner, but your partner wants pizza, so you happily go along. This is all fine and good because who doesn’t love pizza? Often, if we pause long enough, we’ll find that anxiety is driving our easy going-ness. Anxiety that your partner will think you’re dumb for wanting Thai, that you have bad taste, that you can’t make a good decision. (SPOILER: NOT actually talking about PIzza/Thai, here. Replace “Thai food” with “any and all relational needs”-how often you actually want to have sex, what your boundaries are around sharing time with family, what you want to do on your vacation days or Saturdays together, etc). What to do about it: Ask yourself what’s holding you back from expressing that opinion you’ve suppressed. What are you afraid might happen if you express it? What’s the worst that can happen, and is that a likely outcome? Try to voice an opinion you’ve been keeping to yourself. Do it today! You won’t self destruct.
When “I don’t care” is really “I don’t know”
This one is pretty common, too. These folks often feel really unsettled; it’s rare to feel grounded. When I hear people talk about not knowing what their wants, needs, or desires are, I relate it to feeling stuck in neutral, just waiting for someone to push you in a direction.
This person may seem “easy going” (Again, whatever that means), but really doesn’t have a connection to their own self, thus having a hard time knowing what they need.. People who feel like they don’t know themselves or their purpose often feel this way. What to do about it: Eat a really intentional meal today. Ask yourself, what does my body want? What does it need? Are these things the same? Meal times are a really good time to get grounded and connected to ourselves. You have a choice at every turn in every moment of your day. Be intentional about your choices (versus making them on autopilot), and begin to strengthen your decision making muscle. If you find yourself saying, “I don’t know,” then use that as an opportunity to go find out.
There are a lot of other manifestations of being ‘easy going.’ I may sometimes seem easy going because I say, “I don’t care,” or “you pick.” I’m an opinionated gal, so I know that when I suddenly have no preference, I really am just tapped out in my decision making capabilities and it’s likely it’s been a very tough day. It’s a good indicator I need to ramp up my self care and/or do less.
Did the topic of being easy going make you think of yourself? Shoot me an email and let me know how it manifests for you. I’d love to hear about it!
Lindsey Brock | The Breakup Coach
I'm Lindsey! I care about you and want to help you to have healthy, secure relationships. Sometimes, that means we've gotta leave the ones we're in. I can help you do that, too. Have something you'd like me to write about? Drop me a line and let me know!