You want to experience a greater sense of satisfaction, purpose and joy in your life?
You want to feel a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, and not just say it?
You want to stop selling yourself short, selling yourself out, choosing to be loyal to others at the expense of loyalty to yourself?
Then rethink your relationship to two little letters, one tiny word, that if used correctly can and will transform your life.
That word is - “NO!”
As a society we struggle deeply with this word.
Saying "NO" may be natural to who we are (it's the third word out of a child's mouth, right after "mama" and "dada"), however that's where the comfort ends. For the rest of our lives we are uncomfortable with it, feel bad for saying it, and tormented when we could have said it, should have expressed it, but didn’t.
Saying “Yes” makes us selfless and saying, “No” makes us selfish. Be selfless not selfish!
Or so the story goes.
What we are taught this, told this or led to believe this in a thousand different ways. And I see the consequences of it every day in the people I coach.
Every single person I work with is out doing for others, giving to the world, serving in so many capacities. They say, "YES" to everyone and everything, all day, every day - everyone but themselves. And because of it they pay a heavy price.
They are maxed out! They give too much.
They are burnt out! They have nothing left for themselves.
They are resentful. They say, "YES" but mean "NO" and deep down it is eating away at their soul.
Honestly, I have know idea why today’s society is accused of being so self-centered. Frankly, I don’t know who these self-centered people are. Sure there are lots of selfish people out there, however, the ones that I guide are among the most giving people I have ever met. They give so much they are totally out of whack. They aren’t self-centered, rather, they are self-less - literally, longing for, looking for and missing their self. But the point of life isn't to have less self, just as it isn't to be selfish. Living either extreme is no way to live.
Yes, those who are selfish need to learn to more readily, fully and frequently say, "YES."
However, the vast majority of people I know need to readily, fully and frequently say, "NO."
But, they feel guilty when they say, “NO”.
But, they feel selfish when they say, “NO.”
But, they feel ashamed when they say, “NO.”
And in so many ways they end up saying, “YES" when in fact what they wished, wanted and needed was to simply say, “NO.”
So here is the starting point for all of you self-less givers, caretakers and servants of everyone but yourself. It’s time to take your medicine, actually a simple little vitamin. Take it between 2 dozen to 200 times a day for the next, oh let’s say, 232,000 days or so. Take your daily dose of Vitamin N - your Vitamin NO and watch how you will flourish in love and life all because of this powerful little word - NO.
Take it when you sense yourself wanting to say, “NO” to something that doesn't feel like yourse to take on.
Take it when you feel yourself reacting with a "YES" to a request simply out of feelings of guilt or shame.
Take it when you find yourself saying "YES" because you are too afraid to say NO.
Take it when you know that you aren’t gonna do i or will find a way later to get out of. Say now. Say it quickly and get it over with.
Take it when you feel you are being self-less, when your self is less than their self; when you feel like you are being true to them at the expense of selling yourself out.
Take it. Say it. And live it way more than you are currently doing and you will find your way back to the center - the center of your life, your truth, your self. Being self-centered is an act of courage, compassion and love you give not only to yourself but to all those whom you love and serve. And it happens every time you say, “YES” when it’s yours to say yes, and “NO” when its yours to say no.
Say YES when you mean yes. And say NO when you mean no and you will not only have a happier holidays this year - you will live a happier, more joyful, meaningful and loving life for years to come.