In life, we (mostly women) are socialized to believe that if we can say “yes” to a question we should. Salespeople know this, which is why they ask very leading questions trying to get you to say “yes.”
Our friends and family do things like this all the time. “Jamie, will you help me out? I need you to pick up my kids from school, ok?” We want to help out, we want to be a good friend, but it’s not always good for us to say yes because the other person starts to depend on it and when that happens it’s much harder to say no.
And—this one’s for the healing business owners out there—someone else’s poor planning is not your emergency.
I know it’s hard to violate a lifetime of socialization and say “no” to someone but here are some phrases for to you practice to make it easier.
“That doesn’t work for me today.”
“I am sorry, I just have too much going on.”
“I don’t have extra money for things like that right now.”
“We (your invisible partner) have decided to take a break from those things right now.”
“I can’t right now, sorry.”
“Way to busy for that just now”
“I’m not available, sorry”
Short, sweet, and when it comes to saying no, less is more.
“Oh, but, Jill, that’s so mean. I couldn’t do that. I am a nice person.”
There is a very fine line between nice and doormat, and if you are feeling guilty at all about saying “no” to something, I am 100% sure you have already crossed the line into doormat many, many times.
“But I will feel guilty if I say no.”
Guilt is not a natural emotion. It’s something that’s put on us early in life from our family as a way of controlling our behavior. Think of it as an invisible shock collar that someone can use to make you feel bad whenever you do something they don’t want you to do, like say “no.” It’s manipulation; don’t fall for it.
“But what if they get mad?”
Fair warning, when you first start setting good boundaries with people there may be some pushback because they are not used to hearing “no” from you. And likely you aren’t used to saying it, so it won’t come easily.
The key is for you to practice saying “no” when you don’t have to do it.
Practice these with me:
-“Do you want to round up for charity?”… “No.”
-“Can I have that extra chair at your table.” The one you were setting your purse on. “NO.”
-“Do you have an extra pen?” “No.” They are never going to give it back so just say no.
-“Do you want fries with that?” “No.” Never, never.
These are harder, because they have the word “Mom” in front of them but practice it with me:
-“Mom, can you watch my kids? I need to run an errand.” “No.”
-“Mom, can I have some money?” “No.”
-“Mom, can I borrow your … car, dress, whatever?” “No, I will need it.”
Practice saying “no” at least once a day for the next two weeks, and I promise you will discover the freedom of being able to set proper boundaries and feel good about it.
Just say “no.” It will feel so good, I promise.
Jill K Thomas CHT
Soul Connect Hypnotherapy
Appointments available Globally by Video Chat