The Art of Saying No
I tend to forget I am not Wonder Woman, no matter how much I would like to be.
I forget that my body gets tired, as does my brain.
So many things to do, so little time to do it goes the adage. This is true, along with the fact that others who require your time and service do not think it is necessary for you to rest or to take a break. There is a push and a pull to be present at everything as if that is the true mark of authenticity and loyalty.
One thing I have learned is that no one will know when you need to take a time out for yourself but you. And when you know, you need to take action.
"Just one hour," they say, while you know that one hour adds up to the five hours already committed to other meetings on the same day. So you say no and thunderclouds ominously appear over your head.
They will pull and cajole and even shame you when pushing or cajoling do not work in a last attempt to manipulate.
Ignore the manipulation and stick with your priorities.
Running on empty helps no one, but taking time to recharge and breathe does, and so does a cup of tea.
Learning to say no is an art that one must learn and it goes against every grain in what most of us have been taught to be: polite, courteous, and people-pleasers. One thing we must understand is that saying no is not impolite nor discourteous, it simply means we have boundaries for ourselves that we must respect and teach others to as well.
The art of saying no is a simple pleasure in itself, a form of self-care, and a way to guard our boundaries in order to be able to prioritize our time and resources to focus on what we know we need to do.
Block out time in your day planner for yourself, turn off the electronic devices, send the kids out into the yard, and put the kettle on the stove. Take time to brew your tea or coffee, inhale the fragrance, and sit in a spot where you can relax, clear your mind and slowly sip your beverage.
The little things are that which seem unimportant but at the end of the day, they count the most.
Here's to the art of saying no.