Saying no is not easy for me. I always knew that. Now I know why. I just finished The Motivated Life by Paul Martens and the author explains, in detail, why various personality types act the way they do. I am, without a doubt, the very essence of a Type 3 personality he discusses in the book. We have a difficult time saying no because, the author explains, our boundaries are weak. He’s right, of course, but I keep trying. Yet, it’s been tough.
O Magazine reminds us in Learning to Say No that, every time we say yes to something, we are saying no to our priorities. Defining those priorities was the first step for me. I could not get what I wanted unless I knew what I wanted. And I want to focus on a few areas in my life and I am learning that I have to let go of a lot of other things. I feel guilty doing that; but in order to obtain my goal of a balanced life, I need to start saying no. In the process of setting boundaries, the article suggests creating an “Absolute Yes List.” I love this idea. Weed out the unnecessary and compile your list with the areas that are of the utmost importance in your life.
This takes practice, backbone, boundaries, belief in oneself, and a little bit of diva attitude. I’m not talking the type of diva who has all green M&Ms in a dressing room or one who insists on being carried out on stage like Mercedes Jones on Glee the other night. I just mean that little diva oomph of “I am important, I am worth it, I make my own decisions because I am “me”. But becoming a diva also means taking some risks. Some people aren’t going to like your boundaries. They aren’t going to love it when, after you’ve said yes, yes, a thousand times yes, that you are suddenly saying “nope.” We have to become willing to accept that these folks might decide to walk away.
I’m willing to take that chance.