“Half of the troubles of this life can be traced to saying yes too quickly and not saying no soon enough.” ~Josh Billings
Sometimes I feel immense pressure to do all kinds of things I don’t want to do. The reality is, I often put this pressure on myself. I think about the things I should do. Or the things I think I should want to do. Or the things other people might expect me to do.
And all this thinking can drain me—before I’ve gotten a chance to do anything. This is basically choosing to create anxiety where there could be peace and joy. It’s wasting precious time, feeling conflicted, restricted, and full of angst.
So today I invite you to join me in remembering it’s OK to say no, and our world won’t fall apart because of it.
It’s OK to say no if you don’t feel moved by an opportunity—no matter how exciting it might sound to someone else. Happiness is a choice, but it’s made up of lots of smaller choices we need to make based on what we actually want.
It’s OK to say no if you’d rather relax than go out—no matter how many other people think you should be social. Only we know when we need to recharge and take care of ourselves, so it’s up to us to recognize and honor that.
It’s OK to say no if you’d need to sacrifice your needs to help someone else—even if a part of you feels a little guilty about it. People are always going to have requests. Sometimes we’ll be able to help; sometimes we won’t. We’re still good people regardless.
It’s OK to say no because you don’t have time—even if you don’t know right in this moment when you’ll be more available. We’re allowed to say no without hinting toward a future yes.
It’s OK to say no without a detailed excuse—even if you feel like you should offer one. “This doesn’t feel right for me right now” is a perfectly valid reason.
Lastly, it’s OK to say no even if you’ve already said yes, if you realize you weren’t being true to yourself. It’s far better to make the right decision late than follow through with the wrong one because you think you should.