Remember the time when we were toddlers… I think, the word that we must have heard the most from our parents was ‘No’.
‘No, don’t play with water’
‘No, don’t throw that toy’…
And as kids, we must have used it equally as well.
‘No, I don’t want to eat’
‘No, I want to wear this dress only’…
And now that we are adults, we have difficulty in using this very word which have heard all our growing years. Yes, it’s the same word, No.
For a long, long time, I was a Yes girl. If you looked a little harder, you would have seen me wearing it as a big pendant on a chain around my neck. Anybody could ask me for ‘help’ or ‘support’ and I would do it, even if that would kill me.
I had various reasons to say Yes when I really wanted to say No. May be it was to avoid hurting other people’s feelings, to keep the peace, to avoid appearing as rude, to not feel guilty or left out …etc etc.
Due to this inability to say No, I have gone through prolonged periods of stress, anxiety, anger, resentment and burnout. Today, when I look back, I realize that it wasn’t really worth it to have said Yes to so many people, projects and tasks. I did that at the cost of my own happiness and peace of mind.
It has taken a long time for me to say No. But it has happened, finally. And here are my 7 reasons to say No…
Reason #1 : Gain Happiness and Inner Peace – There are no more grinding of teeth or pulling hair apart in frustration and resentment, just because I couldn’t say No. A No to things I don’t want to do leads to a less crazier and saner me. Saying No is not about being selfish, it’s about self care and setting boundaries.
Reason #2 : Saves Time and Energy – And that’s for both the parties, that is the person coercing me into thinking and acting his/her way and myself. And that also boosts productivity for I am no longer working on things that I shouldn’t be doing.
Reason #3 : Boosts Confidence – Standing for what I believe is right, certainly is a morale booster.
Reason #4 : Gain Respect – Saying No, may annoy the person in the short term, but he would certainly stop taking me for granted and would value my time and work.
Reason #5 : Avoids Messy Situations – Failing to do what I committed can be pretty awkward. Saying No beforehand saves from this messy situation.
Reason #6 : Sets Priorities – Life is all about choices and priorities. Stephen Covey says it aptly “You have to decide what your highest priorities are and have the courage – pleasantly, smiling, non-apologetically – to say ‘no’ to other things. And the way to do that is by having a bigger ‘yes’ burning inside.”
Reason #7 : Gives Room for More Yesses – Yes, sometimes we need to say No so that we have more time and reasons to say Yes.
Having said that, let me add that saying No isn’t easy and not all people appreciate it, but the ones who will, at least will do so for the right reasons.
Do you have a hard time saying No? How does it make you feel when you do?
Linking this to the second edition of BAR-A-THON by Blog-A-Rhythm
Theme – Seven