03 Jan 4 ways to say no and feel better about yourself while you do!
Do you tend to say “yes” to a lot of requests from others knowing that you have things you need to do for yourself? Do you put off doing things for yourself that NEED to be done, because you are accommodating others? Then you may not be honoring your “yes” and “no”? Having just wrapped up the holidays and celebrate the spirit of giving it’s time to work on you. To give back to yourself and not feel guilty while doing it!
People ask us every day for things, our time, our energy, our attention, our praise, our agreement, and our advice. Often we are programmed to think it is not ok to say “no?” Let’s start this New Year off by reprogramming ourselves. Learning when to say “yes” and when to say “no” is essential for your health and well-being.
Need a little convincing that it is ok to say no? Ok!
Some of the benefits of saying no are –
You’ll find yourself with more energy and more time to do the things you want to do. WHAT?!?
You may find more confidence because saying “no” to others means saying “yes” to yourself. COULD IT BE?!?
Saying “no” gives control back to you over your schedule, your life and your decisions. REALLY?!?
More respect. Believe it or not other people with respect you for saying “no.” They might not like it, but if they were not considering how valuable your time is before, they probably are the kind of people you want in your life. Like it or not, most people do respect it when you show them your limits. WOW!?!
Sometimes what depletes us most is simply over-committing ourselves or saying “yes” to the wrong things. Many of us want to help those around us. We may think we are simply really good at many tasks, and find ourselves saying ‘yes’ because we know we can do it.
It is great to want to help others out, but not when you’re sacrificing yourself and your sanity. I challenge you to check in with yourself to see whether you are chronically saying yes to another person’s agenda without thinking about your own.
If you have a healthy “no” practice in place, that’s amazing!
However, you may be one of the many people I know that has a difficult time saying “no.” The amazing thing about saying “no” to something actually means you’re saying “yes” to you!
Take a minute to think about the top five priorities in your life. Is it family? Working towards a promotion or launching a new business? Finally getting healthier? Reconnecting with extended family, you haven’t seen in a while?
Now WRITE THEM DOWN! The great thing about looking at your top priorities is it will help add a layer of thought when you are about to say “yes” or “no” to something. Often when someone makes a request, we automatically respond with a “yes” and then try to figure out how we can manage it with everything else that is already on our plate.
Building a practice, where you pause between the request and response, will benefit immensely. During this pause, you can assess your top priorities and determine whether the request helps you with what you already have on your plate or maxes you out. Think of it like this … is it a Heck YES or a Heck NO.
Listen to your body, it won’t lie to you. If you feel dread and ugh then it is a Heck NO. Follow that. Honor that feeling!
How to tactfully say no
1.) Start to notice. Notice that you are being asked to do things all the time by almost everyone with whom you interact.
2.) Check your schedule. You can’t check if things fit with your plan if you don’t have a plan. If you don’t have plans, other people will always be happy to make them for you.
3.) Say “no” to all of it. It’s ok to tell people you are too busy right now. I dare you to try it!
4.) Consider. The next time someone asks you to do something for them, take some time before you respond and allow yourself space to consider if the request is something that you can easily do. If so, say “yes” and if not, say “no,” whatever you decide, make sure it is the right decision for your well-being and peace of mind. By taking your time, you aren’t reacting from a people-pleasing place and can sincerely consider the importance of requests.
When you say “yes” to something, you’re saying “no” to something else. However, the counter is also true. When you say “no” to something, you create the space to say “yes” to yourself. Imagine two little letters N-O can reduce the amount of stress you may be experiencing trying to take care of someone else, instead of what’s most important to ourselves.
I challenge you to learn to say “no” to others this year while saying “yes” to you. I am even willing to bet you will find more of you to help others because you are taking better care of yourself!
I encourage you to share this article with a friend or loved one who you believe can benefit from learning to say no.
Photo by Anwaar Ali on Unsplash