The Power of Saying "No"
Reclaiming Your Time and Setting Boundaries
She rolled over on her right side, tugging the blanket over her shoulder attempting to hold on to the last bit of warmth her duvet cover would muster up. She was still groggy and shifting from her trance of sleep into a state of consciousness. She reached her arm over and stretched her fingers along the surface of her nightstand eager to end the obnoxious shrill of ringing that permeated her bedroom. Her hand finally made its way over the familiar curvature of her cell phone and as she rubbed the sleep out of her eyes, the room was filled with silence with one tap of her finger. With nothing but the glowy illumination of her cell phone's home screen lighting up her face, the big round shapes of 6:00 was all she could see. She let out a grunt as several dings notified her of emails, calendar reminders, text messages, and missed calls.
-8 a.m. Zoom Meeting w/Patricia to go over the monthly budget
-Text message from Dylan: “Are you free to—”
-Text message from Mom: “Can you—”
-Email from Boss Nolan: “Please confirm—”
-(5) missed calls (10) voicemails
And on and on and on. She slammed her phone face-down at the side of her bed and pulled the cover over her head, hiding and sinking deeper into her mattress. It was another Monday morning. Of course the hypothetical "she" in this scenario is him, them, us, you. And me. We are everything to everyone and whatever is leftover to ourselves. We go with the flow and we fall in line with the titles that shape our existence and the plans that follow suit. We aim to please and meet external expectations without considering what impact this has on our mental health and well-being.
By all means, I am not telling you to quit your day job or to not show up when and where you have already committed to, but when it comes down to setting boundaries and limits it's okay not to be available because you spent the whole week working and by the time the weekend rolls around you want nothing more than to curl up on the couch wearing nothing but an oversized t-shirt and underwear to watch a movie or read a book. Or just nap. Especially if it means you don't have to put a bra on. *Chef's kiss*
It's okay not to be the strong friend this week because you're going through your own crisis–even when they can’t see it because it’s the battle inside of you that’s waging war—and you need some time to process. You'll be back when you get a grip.
It's okay not to be the one who takes on more job responsibilities without the accompanying adequate pay or RESPECT. Reclaim your time for your health, your family, your joy, your peace. Your boundaries. Boundaries. We tend to shy away from that word because of its implications but saying "No" is not a bad thing. It allows you to be the autonomous being we are all given the freedom to be to make choices in life that will give you a stern grasp on your sense of self and direction.
Take a lesson from influencer @JaeGurley on tik tok’s book: You don’t need to show up at every local event because you’re a main character, not extra #3.
If we’re not careful we succumb to life instead of choosing it but sometimes, saying “No” makes room for you to be available for even better opportunities and when those moments arise don’t forget to give them a resounding, "Yes!”
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