I’ll be the first to say it: Saying no is hard. I’m a yes girl all the way mostly because I love to stay busy and have a bit of FOMO. One thing I’m learning is to say no and why it’s okay!
Saying no doesn’t mean you’re going to lose your friends or your child’s friends. It doesn’t mean that people won’t like you, think your rude or judge you. (And if they do, should you be spending time with them?) Saying no is about setting boundaries for yourself and knowing when you have more to give. Or even knowing when you have nothing to give at all. Over the last couple of months I’ve been learning to say no and accepting that it’s okay.
Motherhood is hard and there are a lot of busy seasons of life. Right now, it’s not just the hustle and bustle of the holidays, but for me raising a strong-willed 4 year old and a 15 month old wild child makes things challenging. There are a lot of hard days involved, but also a lot of good ones. We love to stay busy and be on the go, but sometimes we just have to take a step back and say “no.” Some days Chloe tells me that she just wants to play with her toys at home. Perfect. When she does, that’s what we do, no ifs ands or buts about it.
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My 4 year old can say no, so I can too. I’m still learning, but saying no is okay!
When to say no.
You’re feeling overwhelmed.
With multiple kids and busy schedules, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and need a break. (This is what gets me the most!) When you or your children are feeling this way, take a step back.
Look at your plans and figure out what is just fluff and what is necessity. Obviously your kids need to go to school, but do that need that park playdate across town that someone what asking you about? Is it okay for them to miss gymnastics, dance, karate or whatever they’re involved in just one time?
Evaluate when you have these overwhelming moments before you feel like you’re life is out of your hands. It’s okay to feel like you have too much on your plate and you need to scale back!
You want to do less.
I feel like this is incredibly relevant during the holidays, but sometimes we want to do LESS. Less really is more and maybe you are in a season of less. Find a way for less plans, more spontinatity. Focus on less expensive events, more random in home get togethers. Whatever less looks like to you.
You just want to be with your family.
Sometimes you just need family time. A safe place where you can completely be yourself without worry. I’m not saying that you shouldn’t be yourself around friends, but there is something different about being with family. It’s okay to just sit and talk while the kids run around like crazy people. No one is judging you and family is always supporting you.
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Why it’s okay to say no.
We all need a break sometimes.
This goes back to the feeling overwhelmed. We all need a break. There’s a time in everyone’s life when they feel they need to take a step back and say no. Just do it. Pushing forward and saying yes just to people please or for fear of missing out will just make you more overwhelmed. Take care of you first.
You need to put your needs first.
You are giving yourself value when you put you first. Everyone has needs and saying yes all the time will derail what needs are important. Putting others first constantly will completely drain you. I’m looking at you momma. We have to put our needs over our kids, family, friends sometimes because we are worth it.
Constantly giving or constantly saying yes to things you don’t want to do will leave you unhappy and unfulfilled. Find a balance between yes and no, and always keep yourself in mind when doing it. Choose to say yes to things that bring you joy, make you a better people or you just want to do.
You can’t control others’ opinion about you.
Saying no is often associated with being rude or even selfish, but for the most part, people understand. No is a boundary whether it comes to saying no to plans or saying no to a sales person. It’s a firm decision that for the most part people understand.
If people don’t understand, you can’t control what or how they think about you. That’s OKAY! You’re not being rude or selfish for expressing that you don’t want to. Don’t let their thoughts ruin your day. Find a way to accept that not everyone will like you and you’ll feel so much better.
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You can do it. Take control.
Say no when you want to. Don’t go to a party that you have no desire to attend. Say no when you have too much on your plate. Things will get done without you. Say no when it’s right for you. It’s time to start making you number one and stop worrying about what others think.
Say yes to things you have time to do. Reserve yeses for things that bring you joy and your life can benefit from. Say yes when you’re in a healthy point in life and you have more to give.
Learning to say no comes with figuring out why it’s okay. It’s okay to put yourself and your family first. So start small with saying no to little things and take control!
If you’re interested in learning more about saying no, you can purchase The Art of Saying No by Damon Zahariades on Amazon or read it for free on Kindle Unlimited! (Fun fact: You can try Kindle Unlimited for free for 30 days. It’s the best!)