How's that for a greeting. I just came up with it on the fly, too. Gosh, I was born to be a straight thuggin' wangsta rappa. Okay, not really, but I sure know how to rhyme!
Anyway, this post is really important, and if someone had written it for me a few years ago, it would have made my life way easier.
Girls (and guys), this post is about learning to tell people, "No." I'm not talking about drugs, alcohol, or sex. I'm talking about general stuff. Those of you that find yourself struggling to have "you time" or do anything for yourself because you're so bogged down in doing things for other people - this is for you.
Dear Do-gooders of the World,
It has come to my attention that the word "no" is actually a very hard word to say, even though it is only two letters and one simple syllable. Why is it so difficult for us to say? What keeps us from being able to say that word to not only friends and family, but mere acquaintances and total strangers? WHY IS IT SO DANG HARD TO TELL PEOPLE NO??!?
Because it makes you feel bad. You feel like you're being selfish if you tell someone, "Sorry, I can't watch your seven kids because my husband and I haven't seen each other in a week and tomorrow's the only chance we will get to spend time together," or "Sorry, I have had a crazy week, and I have a massage appointment tomorrow - I can't take your shift at work," or, perhaps, something along the lines of, "I'm sorry, I just really can't afford to spend my time and money tutoring kids for free when I could use that time working another job earning money to help me pay my own bills" (not that I've had to say that today).
We feel obligated to say, "yes" to almost every request we get, because we have been conditioned to believe that "no" is a bad word. I'm not saying we should all turn into "NO!!!! NO!!! NO!!! NEVER!!! YOU SUCK AT LIFE AND I DON'T WANT TO HELP YOU!!" Machines... but we should be a little more OK with saying that one little word. If your 5-year-old wanted you to do her homework for her so that she could go play with her friends, would you say no? Probably. If your 80 year old grandpa wanted you to give him a ride to the strip club... would you say no? Hopefully. So, then, why is it so hard for us to say no to someone when we can barely keep ourselves alive? Because we feel like we have an obligation to always always always put others first.
You know what? Sometimes it's okay to put you and your family first. I think service is great - when you're able. In fact, I think everyone should do some sort of service, no matter how small. I do not, however, think we should spread ourselves ridiculously thin or make ourselves miserable just because we feel bad saying "no!"
So friends, I have a proposal. The next time you want to rip all of your hair out because you said yes to babysitting 10 kids, leading the PTA meeting, taking dinner to the old lady down the street, working someone else's shift, and helping someone move to a new house, take a step back and vow to do something for yourself.Be realistic when you're deciding to say "yes" or "no." Don't feel obligated to do everything for everyone else - YOU ARE NOT SUPERWOMAN [Superwoman, if you're reading this... ignore that part]!
Your family is your priority, and believe it or not, you can't truly help others unless you've helped yourself first. Do yourself a favor and learn to say, "no." It'll save you a lot of headaches, a lot of misery, and a lot of all-night caffeine binges and smoothie runs. Trust me.
And once you've learned to say "no," that "yes" will be so much more meaningful.