The Power of No

I started noticing that I was developing a bad habit. One that was more detrimental to me than anyone else and I decided to nip it in the bud. I didn’t want this to get too out of hand especially if the only person effected was me.Shonda Rhimes has a biography out entities, The Year of Yes. Now, I haven’t read the book, maybe I should and maybe I will, but to what I get from it is that Rhimes took the initiative to try new things; say yes to new experiences, and unexpected invitations for a year. For someone in her position–successful producer and writer–I can see how declining certain invitations can be a little off. People want to know about your success and learn more about you as a person. People are curious. People are also nosey and like to be all up in other people’s business. But I get it, I do.

How does this relate to me? Okay. So, recently I noticed that I was getting into the habit of doing things just because I, (a) didn’t have anything else to do, (b) just wanted to get out of the house or (c) wanted a reason to get all dressed up and girly (a nice change from pajamas). Having done this a few times in a row, the most recent time I found myself saying, “I should’ve stayed home” while en route. That was the lightbulb moment for me. I decided after that, that I had to stop doing things just because. At the end of the day, I’m only putting myself in situations that I don’t want to be in.

Saying “no” without explaining yourself is power. It’s liberating. I know some people who cannot say no because they feel bad or always want to be able to help out when and where they can or they feel a sense of obligation. The reasons are endless. I used to be a no person, but I was a “no, because…” person. I’m always trying to find a way to say “no” in the nicest way possible. I wanted to explain to people why I couldn’t or how something came up and changed my plans; I could never just decline.

I’m not saying that the saying yes to certain invitations is a bad thing but in the event that you have to say no and you’ve deliberated the situation, say it with conviction. Don’t feel guilty. Some people want to be agreeable or pleasing and that makes it hard for them to say no (also, feel free to read my post here about rejection) but sometimes saying no is doing yourself a favor because you don’t want to be in a situation that makes you unhappy. Unhappy is unhealthy.

Sure there will be times when saying “no” isn’t the best answer and sometimes saying “yes” isn’t either but ultimately the decision is yours and that’s the #1 thing to remember. Do what works for you. I’m finally learning to be a “no. Period” person and I think this is something everyone should learn to do. That doesn’t mean go saying no to everyone, but know how to sand by a decision you’ve made especially if you have a choice in the matter.

Do you struggle with always answering one way to people? Why is that? Lets continue the conversation below.



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