Do you sometimes feel overwhelmed, exhausted or stressed out? Do you stare at the seemingly endless obligations on your to-do list but just can’t seem to summon enough energy to get through them?
Ladies, I’m not just talking about the premenstrual syndrome (PMS) here. In this case, PMS stands for “Please make it stop.”
One way to make it stop is to say “no” more often. We like to say “yes” because we’re kind and we want to help, please, and be agreeable. Saying “yes” makes us feel good. Saying “no,” on the other hand, can lead to potential conflicts, lost opportunities, and damaged relationships.
But we often say “yes” at the expense of taking care of ourselves, doing things we enjoy and are more important to us.
The truth is that when we say “yes” to something, we’re also simultaneously saying “no” to other possibilities. So “yes” and “no” are really the two sides of the same coin. Neither one is better, nor more superior, to the other. It really boils down to a personal choice:
What do you really want, and what’s important to you?
It was difficult for me to say “no” in the past. Sometimes it still is. But I’m certainly saying it more often these days. Contrary to the past, saying “no” makes me feel empowered and liberated in some way. It feels good. It feels right.
Below are a few tips I’ve learned along the way:
Know what you want
Knowing what you want, what you don’t want, and what’s important to you, are keys to helping you decide whether to say “yes” or “no” at any given time and in any given situation.
Follow your inner guidance
Pause for a moment and consult your inner guidance. Given time you’ll find that there’s a resonance to the sound or image associated with the answer “yes” or “no.” One will feel more right than the other. Your mind may talk to you with many conflicting voices. Acknowledge those voices, but trust your intuition.
Say “yes” to what gives you energy
Say “yes” to people and situations that give you energy, and support, inspire or nurture you. Stay away from energy suckers who drain you of this precious commodity.
Don’t make fast commitments
Allow yourself the time and space to reflect on the situation, consult your inner guidance, and make an informed decision. Resist the compulsion to say “yes” immediately if you’re not sure about your decision. Simply say, “Let me think about it, and I’ll get back to you.” Most people will respect and honor this if you say it politely and firmly.
Saying “no” is a way to reclaim and express your personal power. It may feel unnatural, initially, but with practice you’ll able to say “yes” or “no” with equal comfort, clarity and confidence. You’ll find that when you say “no” to people and situations that do not support and nourish you, you’ll create a wide-open space for creativity, peace, and freedom to flow in.