In the movie, Ella Enchanted, a fairy places a spell on baby Ella, and until the spell is broken she is doomed to obey every command she is given.
Of course her wicked stepsisters take advantage of this, and tell her to give her the necklace her mother gave her, plus lots of other horrible things, and she does them even though she doesn't want to.
I can relate to Ella way too well. When I am in the presence of a stronger personality (most of the population, it seems), especially one of these people who automatically tells everyone else what to do, it's like I'm under a spell and I have to do what they say.
It is awful. And I get furious at myself. But I have no idea how to break the spell.
When my pastor's wife calls and tells me what parts our children will be playing at the Christmas pageant, I find myself accepting their parts even though we had decided we won't be participating.
I round the corner at the grocery store and meet the sample lady. She offers me a green seedless grape and even though I don't like them, I find myself reaching out to accept it, and then eat it, and when she tells me they're only .99 a pound this week I put a pack of them into the cart. As I unpack the groceries I could kick myself for buying them, and they languish in the fridge where I force myself to eat a few every day, but the majority of them will spoil before I get them eaten.
A real estate agent contacted us today about another farm he found that he thought we would be interested in. He was oh, so persuasive and once again I was under that spell. Honestly, it was like something was compelling me to drop everything and go and I had no choice. Finally by a great mental effort I forced myself back to reality, yanked my mouth open, and explained that I can't possibly set up an appointment without discussing it with Mr. Pepper first.
Maybe there's hope for me yet. Every time I manage to say 'no' feels like a victory.