The Myth of Easy-Going and Low-Maintenance


It used to be my favorite way to describe myself.

There’s no such thing as easy-going or low maintenance.

Instead, let’s call it what it is…. pretending, sucking down one’s feelings and going along, to get along.

Sometimes it’s situational. In one relationship or environment, we stand for ourselves and in another, we feel fear from dissent of being abandoned or not liked, basically fearing some form of loss….so we suck it up.

We may give into the louder person, who talks over others, and intimidates us. Whether they’re right or wrong, we might shut down, because we don’t want the confrontation. Unfortunately, those emotions have to go somewhere and usually they get piled up inside us, with all the other instances, where we let ourselves down.

Is it to be confrontational and get our way every time?

No, not at all.

It’s to be authentic and state where we are, what we truly want and not lie to ourselves and the world that we’re okay, when we’re not….especially, when others try to convince us, their way is the right way.

We all have insecurities, the person talking over us and the person sucking it in.

For me, I’ve come to find it’s easier to just admit and own em’!

Walking with confidence and owning our flaws, or fears–they cease to rule us.

It’s not to convince other people, they have a problem, it’s a fruitless conversation, unless they possess self-awareness and want to change for themselves.

We find people to do the dance with us.

Some people I work with have a partner, who they allow to convince them that their own value system is wrong, while this mate is right. On the surface it appears they’re in agreement, while underneath it, my client is suffering. This suffering affects their perception, which affects their actions.

People who tell me they’re easy-going are usually holding back on what they really want–they’re afraid to be authentic. Torturing themselves to convince those who matter, it’s all okay. BUT….In other situations, where loss isn’t important, they’re authentic.

At some point, pretending creates dissension and drama–we don’t get what we want. Even if someone sticks around through our giving up of who we are, it’ll feel empty.

Higher maintenance means we aren’t seeking validation from another; we don’t need to live up to their standards or what is inauthentic….we get to accept ourselves without feeling compromised inside.

Professionally or personally, ground rules for engagement are important.


Some have no boundaries.

It may seem easier to be a doormat–then everyone will like us and think we’re wonderful, except there’s a cost to us.

In stating our truth, there’s no expectation to get our way over another, it’s to create a place of safe discourse, in which expression is key. We can choose in honesty. “I don’t want to, but I’ll do it” or “I don’t want to, and I’m not doing it.”

If we don’t express truth, to appease someone else, we have to live with that shitty feeling of lacking courage and self-love.

We’re all flawed beings, full of insecurities and greatness.

Lacking confidence, we may try our damnedest to cover up insecurities; resulting in bullying others, or being the quiet one or the people-pleaser.

When I proudly wore the low maintenance label, I didn’t want to make a decision. I’d let someone else choose, and I’d have a problem with it, yet I kept quiet and went along. I’d build resentment, but I didn’t want to lose anyone.

Lying to ourselves and others….creates a vicious circle, of more lies and non-acceptance of who we are….and what will stop it?

It might leave others scratching their heads when the eventual truth comes out!

Pretending is not okay.

People do this for years, thinking something will change. They don’t want to develop boundaries, so they’ll say…“I’ll pretend until this situation blows over.” Meanwhile, they’re angry inside and may act out in a variety of destructive ways.

If we want to be treated differently, we must treat ourselves differently first.

We must question the value we place on others, over the love for ourselves. An authentic relationship, is characterized by withstanding the storms, without pretending and placing honesty with love as a main value.

Being higher maintenance means strong boundaries, BASED on who we are and our self-respect.

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