Typically, people-pleasing behavior is a way to avoid confrontation. Being so agreeable is also an attempt to make others like you. The more people like you, the more you might like yourself. It is human nature to want to be liked. Once you develop a solid sense of self-esteem, the need to be liked by others and to have their approval should dissipate.
Self-esteem is derived from accomplishments. Your earning straight A’s is an accomplishment. This objective feedback should add to the development of your self-esteem. With continued accomplishments, you’ll eventually no longer need the approval of others.
There are many other areas in life, besides academics, where one needs to achieve accomplishments. Could these be lacking in your life? Are there things that you would like to have or be able to do that you can’t do or haven’t yet done? Counseling might help you develop in these areas, if they do exist.
Having lost your mother and having witnessed her suicide undoubtedly has had a major impact on your life. Such a tremendous loss is likely factoring in to your stagnation.
You are an ideal candidate for counseling. You tried speaking to your elders, but they don’t quite understand what you are going through. That’s why you could benefit from consulting a trained mental health professional. Counseling could help you deal with the aftermath of losing your mother. It could also help you explore what is motivating your behavior and how to alter it. Please take care.
Dr. Kristina Randle