I wear a necklace that says YES. I have art work on my walls that say YES. I write post its that say YES and stick them around the house. But, I am a NO woman. I love saying no, it makes me feel less anxious, opens up more opportunities for me and brings in a greater sense of self empowerment and worth to me.
Let us rewind a little.
❤ Are you a YES wo/man?
I frequently hear clients describe themselves as ‘people pleasers’ and find themselves constantly saying yes in order to satisfy a perception of something or someone in the future. These people find themselves saying yes to things that don’t feel good, don’t resonate with them and even things that ring great big alarm bells from their inner soul system.
Have you noticed that when you fill your time up with things that you didn’t even want to agree with you feel more anxious and less supported?
❤ Why do we need to learn to say NO?
I believe that everything is about SPACE. For me there are two ways of looking at the world and two ways in which you can think in your headspace. You can either view and think as restricted or expansive (an in depth post on this idea is coming up soon). This space also reflects how you can build your average day, how you can plan out your year and how you can approach the present moment.
One of my favourite analogies for life is as though it is one of those plastic puzzles, where you push the pieces around to make the picture. Remember them? Notice how there is always an empty square? That empty space is needed to see the picture + to make it. If we take this back to life, then we always need to have room; to build, breathe, feel and think.
So, wait, where does saying no come into all of this?
When you say YES to everything, even the things you don’t want to do and the things you really don’t want to do, it fills up all the space. Where is the spare square? Life feels crammed shut.
If you resonate with that idea of people pleasing you might recognise..
What life looks and feels like with no space
Totally restricted right? Tunnel vision. Stuck. Limited. Without opportunity. No hope. Over controlled. No breathing room. This is where you feel the most anxiety and can’t seem to see beyond the restrictive list that you have in front of you that you can ‘no way’ complete. That feeling when you can’t even fathom a solution to what you are thinking about. Oh and on top of it you have NO TIME. This place with no space is anxiety inducing and it’s where you feel like you can’t cope.
And here is..
What life looks and feels like with space
Expansive. With potential. Magical. Good. Breathable. Open. Exciting. Creative. With wonder. Abundant. This life is also full of self love, support, nurture and good times. Oh and synchronicities are all over the place, they love this space!
❤ How to say NO
Ok here is a table to help you check in with whether YES or NO might be your answer for whatever it is you are facing. This is also a useful way to make a decision of any kind.
|It intuitively feels good.||It intuitively does not feel good.
|The idea scares you in a GREAT way.||The idea is replicating something you know didn't feel good in the past.
|It feels empowering.||You would only be saying yes because you 'think' you 'should'
|You can feel a sense of expansion.||You would only be saying yes because you feel you 'have' to or 'should' please someone else.
|It would benefit your self care, self worth, wellness, self value.||It goes against your self care, self worth, wellness, self value.
❤ But shouldn’t I say YES to everything? What will happen if I say NO?
Saying NO to something that doesn’t feel good creates a space to say YES to something that does.
A positive NO creates a YES. It’s really just a basic magic trick.
Even when it feels sooooo much like you should say yes? Just know that when you say that no based on a desire to feel good and move forward then something better or even just more appropriate for you will be waiting to fill that space.
We always need that little square in the puzzle. Sometimes (actually most of the time) we just need it as an act of self care and kindness. This space is where your meditation and self support slots in you see.
So, a final question here. Do you have that square of space in your life right now? What kind of empowered NO’s can you say to claim it back in order to feel good?
❤ What about when you have to say yes?
Ok, we all have commitments, of course we do. Firstly check in with the above, that this isn’t a ‘should’ experience and that your wellness is not being compromised.
For example, last year I had committed myself to one of my best friends hen weekends. I really wanted to go, really really, I was excited. However when it came to the week prior, my circumstances had changed and I was having a difficult time, I was struggling and what I needed was self care, nurture and healthy choices for my body. With my autoimmune disorder and my health history for me my wellness is my priority. So in this particular situation I cancelled my trip and explained honestly what I was feeling to my friends and of course it was OK.
But in times where you are committed and when perhaps you feel resentful, or irritated, unsupported and so on.
What can you do? The answer is always going to be self support, self care, self love. This, by the way, is the answer to all things, it’s just not what we tend to reach for first.
- What do you need right now? and How can you bring that in as simply as possible? – A good way to check in here is go straight to your intuition and feelings. My dear friend Rebecca taught me to put my hand on my heart and just ask myself what I needed. Recognise that your intuition brings in simple and clear guidance. It’s the fearful mind that comes with bells and whistles.
- Can you gift yourself at least 5 minutes alone each morning? (remember meditation is the simple act of valuing your time in order to feel your day expand and yourself of value.)
- Check in with your wellness – are you eating and nurturing your body to support your mood? or are you self punishing because you are stressed?
- EXPAND your thinking. Are you locked into anxiety and panic? How can you stretch your thoughts out?
- Feel your feelings.
- and finally – SURRENDER – Always surrender, surrender forever as I say. Accept that this day might have a bigger place in your life, who knows what good thing might come of it?
❤ P.S YES
My YES necklace and all that, they are in place to remind me to say YES to my day. To show up, to be present and to be expansive. That feels good.
Please join me in conversation on Facebook or twitter/instagram to share with me how learning to say no has benefitted your life! Or if you are really struggling with it then come and share that with me and I’ll give you some tips.