Just because you can doesn’t mean you should. Yet so many of us seem to have forgotten how to say no.
In general, many women are very good at doing and being everything to everyone.
We can multitask, juggle and accomplish many things in a day. We’re often the chef, chauffeur, cheerleader, housemaid, personal shopper, confidant, nutritionist, coach, nurse, financial advisor, to name but a few for our families.
Then on top of this a mother, friend, daughter, cousin, wife, colleague, lover, sister, etc.
We are many things to many people, and it can get quite frankly exhausting. Burnout is not uncommon and it shows up in some not so obvious ways.
Little to no motivation.
Insomnia or disrupted sleep pattern.
Feelings of helplessness.
Avoidance of decision making.
General neglect of personal needs.
Apathy, the list goes on.
Listen to your body, and emotions as there are always clues if things are not quite right.
Learn how to say no
At times, we need to learn how to say no, or no that doesn’t work for me, or no, I’m busy at that time.
Saying no is not something many of can do easily. We feel guilty, or feel like we’ve failed in some way or feel we should be able to do it all, and it’s not true. Deep down, we fear people not liking us and being judged.
Many of us are left feeling resentful, angry and suffering from burnout. We are not looking after our own needs because we believe we must put our Children first at all times, again not true. I have mentioned this in some of my earlier posts, but it has to be repeated. Your children of course, must have the essentials, but they do not need your soul as well. You do not and must not sacrifice everything for your child. Same in relationships, you can’t be everything to everyone, and the most important relationship is the one with yourself.
Your children will by the time they hit their teens be either rolling their eyes at you, huffing and puffing, or letting you know you’re such a sad old person that you don’t know what you’re talking about – oh and they hate you – I’m sure you can remember what you thought of your parents at this age!
Yes be a good mum but don’t sacrifice your life for your kids. You are allowed to do both be a good mum and look after yourself all at the same time. An excellent lesson for your children, otherwise there’s a high chance they will model your behaviour, particularly if you have a daughter.
Let’s go back to saying no for a moment. If you’ve got too much on and you don’t want to look after your friend’s daughter after school when she asks, it’s ok to say no – you’re not a terrible friend, you should not feel guilty, you’re putting your own needs first – and no this is not selfish, this vital for your well-being and sanity.
Your mum expects you to visit her on Sunday, you’ve been doing this for years, and all you want to do is have a relaxing day. Again, this is the perfect opportunity to say I can’t come around on Sunday, I’ll come over another time. Yes, there may well be uproar, people may be upset but you have to look after yourself, because not looking after yourself has repercussions on how you behave, and it impacts your self-esteem, well-being and overall health.
Resentment and anger will bottle up, and it’s got to come out at some point!
Learning how to say no takes practice
If this is an area, you struggle with, let’s have a little practice run.
Close your eyes and imagine a scenario where you are asked to do something and wish you could say no. Now go through this scenario, and instead of doing your usual, yes, of course – no problem. You’re going to say no. Do this five times – and don’t apologise.
This will feel uncomfortable, and you will feel bad or guilty but keep at it, as saying no will get easier. If you’ve not ever said no, you may find that other’s will not like your new way of being and may call you selfish, high maintenance or demanding. Be prepared and stay strong. By saying no to others, you are saying yes to yourself. Without doubt, this will make you feel in the long run stronger, more confident and happier overall.
Remember what is important
I was speaking to one of my clients, and she represents many of us; her boys are everything.
She’s just turned 50 and suffering from menopause symptoms. On the surface, she has it all, a great career, a beautiful family and home, money in the bank, but she’s unhappy. She’s exhausted, fed up, recently had a panic attack, and the symptoms of menopause are adding a huge strain on her body.
She believes that she has to do everything; she believes that she must not complain because there are many people out there worse than her; she is embarrassed to say she needs help, and even more embarrassed to say she’s going through menopause. She can’t remember the last time she had fun or did something for herself. She said she is busy all day and realised in our conversation that the very people who she values beyond anything are not getting her full attention because she’s so busy doing everything. Reality – she’s missing a great connection with her kids and herself. What she will find out is that by looking after herself, saying no on occasions will give her a boost of energy. She will feel lighter, more confident and this will impact her family and life overall.
Do not forget what truly matters
Give Yourself Permission
Give yourself permission from this moment forward to before you say yes to anything, you will say, I’ll get back to you and think it through. A few questions to ask yourself before giving your answer.
Is this taking time away from my family, myself?
Have I got too much on at the moment?
Is this something I want to do?
These questions will help you to find the right answer for you, YES YOU!
Well, that’s it from me for this month!
If you have any questions or want to connect, please feel free https://www.instagram.com/teresa.e.townsend/ https://www.facebook.com/coachteresatownsend/
Photo by Isaiah Rustad on Unsplash & Alena Jarrett on Unsplash
The post How to say no and Positively Impact your life appeared first on Motherhood: The Real Deal.