I’ll admit that there was a time when saying no was a problem for me. As a chronic people pleaser, I was always saying yes to things I should have been saying no to. It led to overwhelm, frustration and often times, resentment. This is why I feel pretty confident in sharing these three reasons why we have to learn to say no.
- You risk becoming a bitter b-tch
When we don’t have boundaries, there are always going to be people who take advantage of the situation. If you don’t want to feel like you’re constantly being treated like a doormat, you’re going to have to put on your big girl panties and start saying no. Sure it will feel uncomfortable at first, but if you don’t learn how to say no soon, you’re going to end up bitter and resentful. When it gets to this point you run the risk of saying no to things you should actually be saying yes to.
- There’s always someone else who will say yes
Many times we choose to say yes because we worry that if we don’t the person asking will be left stranded. Whether we want to admit it or not, we’re playing the martyr in a situation like this. We feel like we have to sacrifice our time and do what’s asked of us because if we don’t the world will come to a complete standstill. I hate to be the one to break it to you, but as wonderfully special as you are, you cannot possibly be the only go-to person for every favour request. Believe me when I say that even if you say no, it will get done – eventually 🙂
- You’ve got your own empire to build!
I’m sure you have your own list of things to accomplish, goals you want to achieve, dreams you want to make a reality. If you spend all your time taking care of everyone else’s needs, when do you find the time to get the things that are important to you done? You’ve got to find a way to balance it all. If you haven’t reviewed your priorities lately, then there’s no time like the present! If we don’t identify what’s important to us, then we don’t know where we should be focusing our time and energy. When we lack focus, it’s so much easier to get pulled in many different directions, none of them serving our needs in any way.
It’s okay to say no sometimes. Know that NO can actually be a full and complete sentence. You don’t have to give an explanation or justify it. If you feel you need to, go ahead. I’ll give you this warning though – no matter what the explanation is; there will be those that don’t want to hear it. Especially those who are used to you saying yes all the time. Some will even consider this change in behaviour a bit selfish. The good news is that most will respect you for it in the long run and your relationships will benefit as well. Like TD Jakes says, “greatness is contagious”. You might as well focus on your greatness so that you can lift those around you to the same level. If you don’t have the time to focus on you, how will you ever become the rising tide that lifts all boats?
Sandra Dawes is a certified life coach specializing in helping women who feel unfulfilled with their 9-5 follow their dreams and pursue their passions. She holds an Honours BA, an MBA as well as a certificate in Dispute Resolution. She has completed her first book,Embrace Your Destiny: 12 Steps to Living the Life You Deserve!