Learning To Say NO

I took a break for the Fourth of July. Slept in, sat out in the wonderfully warm sun (finally), went for a run and chilled with my hubby. Sorry folks, no fireworks shows for me. Just needed a nice quiet day yesterday. So now to the gist of my blog, saying: “NO.”

Are you good at saying “NO” when you need to? I am not. I grew up as a pleaser, and am trying to unlearn these behaviors. I think I now know why I am such a pleaser.

When I was 10 or so, my mom was sick. Life at home was not so fun. My parents fought a lot, eventually ending in my dad leaving, they separated and later divorced. I think I felt there was enough going on at home, that if I caused problems or was dramatic, that I would only make an already crazy and intense environment even worse. So I just tried to be good all the time, and I turned into a pleaser. For the most part I was the good daughter and granddaughter. That trickled into school, eventually to high school, college, and then the business world.

While I believe I found my voice in college, I still find it hard to say “No.” Maybe it is because I do not want to hurt anyone’s feelings, maybe it is because I try to do everything, and maybe it is because I do not want others to think I am not capable. Whatever the given reason, it is time for me to learn to say “No” without hesitation.

This Daily Om from last week inspired me to think about saying “No.” As mentioned in the article, we often have abilities that have been underused. My “No” mechanism has been underused. I need to say “No” to set better boundaries for myself and not feel guilty about it!

How did you learn to say “No?” Is it easy for you?

5 thoughts on “Learning To Say NO

  1. I’d always been a people pleaser, and like you I think it stemmed from some childhood stuff. A few years ago my youngest daughter was diagnosed with a disability and suddenly my perspective altered…radically. I say yes to what I can, when I can, but suffer no hesitation whatsoever when I need to say no. I only have so much energy and I want it to go to the most important places first.


    • I appreciate your perspective and know how important it must be to save your energy. I wish more of us would put that type of focus and clarity in our everyday lives. Thank you for sharing!


  2. Pingback: Every ‘NO’ has a silver lining!! Do you see it? « ibelivetoday

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