The Art of Saying “No”
As our whole world has slowed down for most, a lot of people are realizing and seeing some of the positives or the silver lining.
One of the positives that has come out of us being SIP has been that we aren’t feeling so rushed all of the time. Running/driving from place to place, appointment to appointment, commitment to commitment. Especially those who have children. All of their activities, school and social obligations. Don’t you feel as if you don’t have a life anymore?
A lot of this craziness/busyness comes from guilt and people pleasing. Guilt that the kids are not having fun, guilt that we if say “no” someone will be upset with us. But how about you? How can you have a fun and fulfilling life if you say yes to everyone but yourself. It’s not selfish to take care of your mental, physical, emotional and spiritual self. As a matter of fact, if you don’t take care of yourself you may get sick, suffer from anxiety and even depression.
How to say “no”:
1- Get clear about your timing: when are you the most productive? I function the best early part of the day. I start every day with exercise, Yoga and meditation. I like to teach my classes and have client appointments during the day. My creativity and energy drop in the late afternoon/evening. Plus, that is my time with my family. So, when I’m asked to do something that doesn’t work with my timing frame I rarely agree. Figure out your timing and your family’s timing. Honor that time by keeping that space.
2- Kids’ activities do not need to rule your whole life all year around. Yes, there are seasons for certain sports and activities if that works for you as a family but have times of the year when you are not committed. Allow your children to have creativity outside of screen time and organized classes, sports, music and dance. It’s ok if they get bored, that’s when the creativity will kick in. I also like to add here that family time is important, you can hike, bike, do art, cook, teach them to do laundry together. Say “no” to overcommitting your kids and yourself.
3- Create fun things to do for yourself. Hang out with friends (virtually and then in person), have alone time, read, nap, exercise or any activity you find that you love. Commit to your time and don’t allow others to interfere with that time.
4- Boundaries come from a place of feeling that you are important. Make yourself important. Helping others is important but not at the expense of it taking away from your health and emotional well-being.
5- Be aware of energy suckers; people who don’t respect your time, take without giving and who are negative.