“Love yourself enough to set boundaries. Your time and energy are precious. You get to choose how you use it. You teach people how to treat you by deciding what you will and won’t accept.” -Anna Taylor
“No,” is a complete sentence. This is for those of you who have a big heart. It’s also for those of you who have a hard time saying, “No.” You feel like you need to explain yourself.
The truth is that you don’t. You don’t have to make up a white lie or a story to justify your, “No.” If you want to tell the person why you are unavailable then you may. It is not required of you. If they ask a follow-up question to your, “No,” then you may respond with, “It doesn’t work with my schedule.”
If they press you further, simply say, “It’s a personal or private matter.” Leave the conversation at that. Most people respect that sort of response because they would like to be treated with the same respect.
Saying, “No,” is planting the seed of freedom. If they don’t respect your boundaries, then you have permission to walk away. It’s like training a puppy – you have to repeat yourself a lot in the beginning. Eventually, they catch on and understand that when you say, “No,” it means “No.” This will be harder for some people to accept than others, and that’s okay.
Saying, “No,” allows you to be who you are. This is a tool to allow you to completely step into your full power. There really is nothing to fear. It’s up to you how you want to live your life. Their reaction isn’t you’re doing. You are only in charge of you and they are in charge of themselves.
Be prepared for some potential backlash from the more stubborn family members and friends. No one else has dominion over how you live your life.. Just like you do not decide how others live their lives. You are not obligated to feel guilty for living the life you want to live. You don’t guilt-trip others for living their life so why would you do it to yourself? Go and be free!
When someone asks you to do something that you really don’t want to do – you will say, “No,” period. Whether it be a task that you really don’t have time for because you have enough on your plate already; or if you’ve always said yes so you’re afraid to say “No,” instead, you will say “No,” period.
If this seems daunting, start with smaller no’s. Do you want to go to the grocery store or do you want to stay home to read a book. If you don’t feel like going to the store, then kindly say, “No.” Do what makes you happy and bask in it. Say, “No,” and move on. Don’t dwell on letting the other person down; don’t worry about if they are feeling disappointed or whatever. Choose to feel happy because you said, “No,” and enjoy reading your book.
Remember that this is YOUR life. Your time is valuable. Spend your time doing things that make your heart sing. The fourth richest man in the world, Warren Buffet said, “…I mean, I can buy anything I want basically but I can’t buy time.” (5) Time is your most valuable asset. Saying No allows you to step into your power. It may be scary at first. You can say, “No,” nicely but be firm. This is one of those practices that improve with time. There really is nothing to fear. Feel the power of, “No.”