If you’ve ever overextended yourself, fallen short and felt completely inadequate, today’s mini-mission will soothe your soul. Maybe you consistently over commit or your to-do list never ends.
While there are definitely circumstances that cause us to be in over our head, typically that drowning feeling is completely self-imposed. For some reason we like to measure our loveliness by how much we get done, as if we are our accomplishments. As if we weren’t good enough already.
That stops with today’s mini-mission. Say no so you can say yes. This is an invitation to say no to the things that don’t really matter so you have time, energy, motivation and passion to say YES to the things you care about.
My friend Heidi was recently offered a book deal. A big, beautiful book deal. It was a great opportunity and something she considered and debated for weeks. Who would say no to that? She did. She said no because she wanted to focus on the part of her work that makes her heart sing. She said no to more money, more publicity, and way more work so she could say yes to her blog and FoodieCrush magazine.
Her decision to say no gave the heart and soul of her business a chance to be brilliant and reminded her about what was most important in her work.
Everyday you have hundreds of chances to say yes or no, and every time you say yes when you want to say no, you cheat yourself and the project, or person you said yes to. I understand that there are certain things in life that you have to do that you’d rather not do, but that’s different from saying yes to everything because you think it makes you better or more attractive, lovable, sexy, happy, (insert your desired feeling here).
How to say no
- Short and sweet. A lengthy explanation is not required and you don’t have to justify your decision. “This isn’t the right time.” or “I’m not the best person for the project.” is enough.
- Keep the door open. Remember that no doesn’t mean, “no, never, I hate you and the idea.” it simply means “no, not now.”
- Be polite. A simple, direct “no thank you.” is often all that you need.
- Respond quickly. If you need to think about something for too long, the answer is probably no. Trust your gut, respond and move forward without lamenting your decision.
- Remember the yes. The hardest person to say no to is yourself, especially if you are on give me more autopilot. When you have trouble resisting or saying no to every thing that comes your way, remember how you feel when you say yes to the right things, and people and projects that mean the most to you. When you say yes to what you care about and what you love, it feels so good. The work is more fluid. The time is more fulfilling and you naturally do your best work and offer the best version of you.
People will love you for who you are and how you treat them, not because of the check marks on your to-do list. They will love you because you make time for them, not because you are so very busy. Consider that your busyness isn’t only overwhelming for you, but for everyone around you.
Please comment below with I will say no to ____________, so I can say yes to _______________. Your answers will be inspiring to others and to future yes/no decisions.
For more experiments to simplify your life, read Mini-missions for Simplicity. It’s available on the Amazon Kindle store, but you don’t need a Kindle to read it. Kindle books can also be read using the Free Kindle Reader App for your Web Browser, PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone, BlackBerry, or Android.