I was stuck in the traffic that is my morning commute and found myself utterly bored. Because texting and driving is heavily frowned upon, I just let my mind wander. I’ve been thinking a lot of deep things about life lately:”What am I going to make for dinner?” “What if I could have gotten that cheaper on eBay?” You know, the usual. So, it surprised me that among the many deep things that I was pondering, I came across what feels like a gem. I like to joke about my lack of “adult” behavior here quite a bit, but I recently realized that there are some very adult things I do on a daily basis that I don’t give that much thought to anymore. One thing I’ve noticeably become more confident doing over the last few years is simply saying ‘No.’
Usually the word ‘no’ has some really strong connotations that come with it. If you say it too often you must be a negative, stubborn, selfish, uncaring, immature person, right? The awful adjectives could go on and on. We assign it to toddlers, young people with zero-self awareness prone to pitching fits. But, it’s taken me a while to realize that it can be a positive thing too. ‘No’ is appropriate for many occasions, not all of them bad. When it comes to making friends and building relationships I’ve learned to be a little more discerning. Sometimes it’s not the easiest thing to do, but if you have people in your life that you’re incompatible with, or who don’t add much of anything positive, you can say no to them. Be honest, be kind, but still, say no. It’s a much more mature way of going about things than picking fights or leaving them hanging.
You work life might similarly benefit from your new word. Be realistic, if you find yourself running into problems or limitations, you can say no, and maybe spur some change. It’s perhaps not the most optimistic way of thinking about things but, as someone who isn’t terribly opinionated or outspoken, saying no can empower you in certain situations. Of course, I’m not saying that simply saying no all the time is a realistic way of getting things done, or an effective way of getting out of doing things you don’t want to do. It is important, however, to use it as a tool when you feel yourself deviating from the path you want to go. I realize there’s quite a lot of irony to be found in my writing this, as I’m pretty sure I went on a tirade on Saying ‘Yes’ to things a mere few months ago. With gifs and all! They’re weirdly similar- just two sides of the same coin. The ultimate moral of the story is to take a stand for the things you can do, and want to do, and don’t be afraid! Saying no can be a means of sticking up for yourself, really. If you’re able to draw these lines for yourself, I suspect you might garner some respect from the people you would least expect it from. I hate to say it, but you might have a little more respect for yourself, too.
That’s all for now! I’ll be back soon with more incredibly deep things.