We have all been in a situation where we are simply stuck because we couldn’t say ‘NO’.
Every day we face countless unwanted situations which can be easily avoided if only we had learned to say NO!
But why can’t we say no? Why do we keep doing things for others that only rob us out our precious time and steal our energy? Why do we have so much difficulty in saying such a simple word? A word that can save us from all the burden of going out of the way to help someone else when we have our own priorities.
The answer lies in the loopholes found in our thinking pattern which ultimately governs our actions and behavior. If the thought of making someone unhappy by refusing to do what they ask from you makes you cringe then you’ve reached the point where you’ve become the best people-pleaser in town. You want to be seen as a likable person even if that means torturing your own self. Your idea of healthy relationships is so flawed that the happiness of the people around you matters more than your own happiness.
While helping others is a noble quality there is a fine difference between empathy and degradation. You thought you were being helpful even useful to someone else but in reality, you were condescending and degrading to your own self!
But how can that be how can you be degrading to your own self? You always thought of yourself as a socially conscious person that acts and behaves in a socially accepted manner never causing troubles to other. How can you do this to yourself?
You spent your entire life pleasing others doing what others said but when did you actually do something for your own self? When did you actually make time for yourself and your needs? You lived a life for others but when did you live for yourself?
You compromised your own honor, your own needs, your own self-respect, your own time, and your own life.
The truth is you’ve buried yourself beneath the wants and desires of others. You became a ‘doormat’ (as harsh and cruel that description sounds like that is the truth).
But I have some good news for you. You can break the habit of pleasing others and train yourself to say no. The first step for that would be to find your voice. Your own unique voice that you hear in your head when you know that you don’t want something. You have become so accustomed to letting others use you according to their wish that you’ve lost your voice. You are now speechless. You suppress your emotions bottling them up into regrets which leads to a vicious cycle of self-pity. You end up feeling sorry for yourself. You get the urge to say no but somehow that word won’t come out of your mouth.
So find your voice and when you do be loud and clear. Let that word come out naturally embodying the strength of your emotions.
There is no shame or guilt in saying no to the needs of someone else when one’s own needs are to be catered.
Here I highlight some of the situations where it is completely fine to say no:
When you have other responsibilities.
When you don’t like the way someone acts towards you.
When your mental health gets affected.
When you need personal time.
Whenever you want.
Saying no is an act of bravery. It takes courage to displease others and not care what others think about you. So, say no when you want to; say no because you can!
Originally published at medium.com