How to Make Saying "No" Easy
Life is full of opportunities.
If we are not careful, we will take advantage of opportunities that don't fit in with where we want to go in life. This takes us "off course" from reaching our dreams and fulfilling our goals.
CBS Money Watch talks about Americans' impulse buying habit.
Interestingly, Americans are also reporting feeling financially strapped, with two-thirds of Americans saying they can't handle an unexpected $500 car repair or a $1,000 emergency room bill. That study, from Bankrate.com, indicated that many households aren't prepared for a financial shock. But too many splurges may be putting some families on a path for financial disaster, especially if an unexpected expense hits at the same time.
Psychology Today talks about the overcommitment of high-achieving women which can lead to unnecessary stress.
They overcommit to their jobs. They overcommit to causes. They agree to do favors for friends or colleagues. They volunteer to help at their child’s school or a community organization (sometimes both). And while these acts—some selfless, some not—are certainly laudable, they can add hundreds of hours (and stress) to an already overscheduled life.
DTP Leadership talks about the impact of overcomitting at work.
Yes, we support employees who are honorable, respectful and compassionate with each other; yet, some people develop habitual ways of behaving that create an over-commitment rather than a healthy involvement. When this over-commitment occurs negative events happen between the employees and the organization suffers.
And Psychology Today points out the relationship between depression and overcommitment in a story about an overcommitted Mom.
Meaghan uses all this activity to avoid thinking about her depression. I refer to this as a "high-energy depression" in which all the activity covers feelings of worthlessness. In a sense, she is racing ahead of a depression that could catch her if she stops.
To make things even worse, people who routinely overcommit are often given a "pat on the back" and compliments for being so helpful, caring, and generous.
So, what's the problem?
The problem is that overcommitting to the wrong things will lead you EXHAUSTED and FRUSTRATED.
I once had a real problem with saying "No." And I also had a real problem with not volunteering to be helpful.
At one point, I was a full-time professional, a young mother of three, doing Mary Kay part-time, and volunteering for several ministries in my church. I was BUSY!
I was so busy that I began to get myself in situations where I was supposed to be in two, and sometimes three, places at the same time.
Don't get me wrong. I was doing some great stuff in all of the areas of my life. So please tell me why I ended up miserable and depressed?
I will tell you why.
I was OVERCOMMITTED. And even worse than that, I was out of alignment with my core values.
My breakthrough to understanding came as I was discussing my future in Mary Kay. I had an amazing time hanging out with this group of positive women. But I was getting mediocre results at best. I simply did NOT have the time on my schedule to fully commit.
Sensing my struggle, my MK Director scheduled an one-on-one session with me. As we begin to explore my goals for MK, she asked me a key question:
"How much time are you willing to devote to this business?"
This led straight into a discussion about my schedule. She asked me to tell her about all of my time commitments. By the time I finished, she was looking at me with her mouth open. "Wow. That's a lot."
I rolled my eyes and laughed. "Yeah, I'm busy."
This is when she hit me with words that changed my life.
She looked straight at me and said,
"Rebecca, in life you will have many opportunities. There are a lot of good causes out there. There is a lot of good that needs to be done in the world. But you will never be satisfied with anything until you get clear on your values and start saying 'No' to the things that will NOT help you live the life you dream about."
Her words sank deep into my heart. I cried on the drive home. I knew what I had to do.
I gave up on trying to do everything and be everything to everyone that day. That included ending my Mary Kay career. I realized that it wasn't part of my story.
I did learn how to say "No." And it started with getting clear about what I valued. And more determined to create the life that I dreamed about.
Reaching your dreams starts by learning to say "No."
When you are clear about what you value and the things that are really important to you, it becomes so easy to say "No" to the things that distract your attention away from what you value.
I took the long way around trying to figure out how to say "No." It literally took me years to figure out what I valued and learn how to build a life that lined up with what I really wanted.
This is why I am passionate about coaching you to success. I know the long way around. But now I can look back and see all of the shortcuts that I should have taken.
I can show them to you.
I want you to live a value-based life that makes it easy to say "No."
If you are feeling overwhelmed, overcommitted, frustrated, or confused about your path forward, let me help you get clarity.
I am on this journey with you. And I am cheering for you!
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