Saying “No” : How I’m doing it & leading a simpler life

Some people are easier to say “No” to than others.  It’s easy for me to say it to those not in my inner circle.  When I am closer to someone, I have a hard time disappointing them.  I have found myself overwhelmed, resentful, frustrated and exhausted. This is because I’m trying to be there for so many and please those closest to me.  I have had epiphany’s over the years. These have really opened my eyes and helped me say “No” in a graceful way, freeing me to have a simpler life.

 

Honesty is the best policy.

I have found that avoiding sugar-coating, or giving a bunch of excuses, helps people be more understanding. This has actually strengthened the relationships from me being vulnerable and honest.  I recently told a friend…”I have been overwhelmed and just need a day home with my kids.” In reality, I would still love to get together over the next few weeks, but I really needed to say “No” that day.  She received it with such grace and even asked if I needed any help.

 

Being a “Yes” man is rooted in fear.

When I realized the reason I was saying “Yes” so much was rooted in a fear of people and disappointing them, I knew something had to change.  I knew my motive was about pleasing people and not pleasing God.

I want to keep God and His will for my life at the forefront of every decision. I can’t do that if my days are being run by other’s needs and desires.  I wasn’t seeking Him on whether I should say “Yes” but would run to Him when I was burnt out.

“I’m not trying to win the approval of people, but of God. If pleasing people were my goal, I would not be Christ’s servant.” (Galatians 1:10 )

“The fear of man lays a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is safe.” (Proverbs 29:25 )

These verses are such great reminders! I’m focusing my time and gifts on the Lord rather than pleasing people or getting them to see me in a certain light.

Nothing is wrong with saying “Yes” when you believe it is something God has called you to do. The motive is something only you can tell when you look into your heart.  In pleasing people, my motives had not been right.

 

You let go of resentment.

I found the resentment I had toward family members and friends wasn’t really focused on what they were or were not doing.  It came from me giving 200%, when I was barely getting back 50% but guess what?!

It was something I created, not them.

I showed them how they could treat me and what they could expect from the relationship.  They could expect me to always be there, to always say “Yes,” to help them out, to contact them more, to always invite them to do things, or whatever the case may be.

I showed them they could put in very little and get A LOT in return.  I realized this wasn’t about them but about me. I needed to make the changes necessary to get rid of resentment and simplify these relationships to be healthier all around.

So, I took inventory of each close relationship and started making changes.  I didn’t feel it was a necessary conversation with anyone, but something I needed to do internally.  As I made the playing field a little more even, I let go of a lot of resentment.

I still have a big heart for people and I find joy in being a blessing, and going above & beyond.  That’s how God has made me and I still want to use that gift.  I’m still an extrovert and reach out to others when they come on my mind. I have realized the ways I needed to scale back to be at a healthier place mentally and again, simplify my life.

 

Life has become so much simpler.

When there isn’t so much on your calendar and so much “to do,” life becomes so much more enjoyable.  I think the older I get, I cherish having relaxing days at home with my kids just as much as our fun days out on a field trip.  Letting go of the overly busy schedule has brought me peace of mind.  I enjoy life, my kids, my family, and my friendships so much more.

God wants us to live an abundant life in Him, not a life that is powered by our fears and the expectations of others.  We can make the choice today to glorify Him with our time here on earth. I encourage you to not let your life run you ragged.  Rather, pray and ask Him for wisdom on what to say “Yes” to and for help to say “No” as well.

This is something I have made a conscious effort to do and it has brought me a fuller life in exchange.  I hope you can find ways to say ” No” when it’s needed. Break free of the expectations and fear of disappointing others.  It will strengthen your relationships and help you lead a more enjoyable life.

 

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How I'm saying No and leading simpler life

 

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51 Comments:
June 7, 2017

This is such a good reminder, Jehava! I have been feeling overwhelmed this week with all the things to do so I needed this. I need to get better at saying no. Though, to be honest, I feel like I sometimes need to say no to myself. “No, you don’t have time to get all those things on your to-do list” it’s a challenge to choose just the handful of things sometimes that are feasible and give grace for the others.

Thank you for sharing this!

June 8, 2017

YES!! such a good point saying No to yourself too! Thanks for reading!

June 8, 2017

“This has actually strengthened the relationships from me being vulnerable and honest.”
I’m learning this over the past few years, about being able to say no, guilt-free. It actually strengthens relationships in the long term.

June 8, 2017

Yes, so very true!!

June 8, 2017

What a fabulous post, thank you for sharing!

June 8, 2017

I definitely needed this! Lately I’ve been wanting to say yes to the things that God is calling me to, but it is also important to pray about what we need to say no to so that we don’t experience burnout. I love this post! Wonderful words!

June 8, 2017

Yes, burnout is so easy. Thank you for reading!

Hi Hava!
I’m writing to let you know that I have nominated you for the Blogger Recognition Award. I truly love reading your posts. I love that you share your posts on Faith and Marriage! I often find myself checking out the recipes too. I’m also a mama blogger who shares my ventures through motherhood. Your posts always resonate with me so when it was my turn to nominate some other bloggers, you came to mind. To check out the award, check out my post at http://www.onesharpmama.com/2017/06/08/blogger-recognition-award/
Thank you for all you do!

June 8, 2017

Thanks so much! I really appreciate your encouragement and nomination!

Love this and I totally feel where you are coming from. A friend of mine from my church recommended the book “The Best Yes” by Lysa TerKeurst for this very reason. She knew I was facing a lot and had so many people pulling on me in different directions. This book was so good and helped be to be confident in saying no and always striving to give my best yes.

June 8, 2017

I love that book! Made a big difference for me too!

June 8, 2017

It really is rooted in fear!! This is so good!! I needed this reminder as it’s time to really take charge of some things in my own life!

June 8, 2017

I’m still making changes too!

June 8, 2017

I love this, and it speaks truth. It’s definitely not an overnight change, but a process.

June 9, 2017

It sure is! thanks!

June 8, 2017

I’m so guilty of saying yes all the time. I really needed to hear this. You have so much insight!!!

June 9, 2017

Your very kind! Thanks!

I couldn’t agree more – honesty is the best policy! Great read, mama. Thanks for sharing.

June 9, 2017

thank you!

June 9, 2017

Wow what a powerful post. I have always been a yes man but I have been slowly working on it. But I could still do better. This has been my inspiration to work harder on saying no!

June 9, 2017

I’m so very glad!

June 9, 2017

Nice post! It’s so important to do this. I only learned to do it after kids.

June 9, 2017

Yes, me too!

June 9, 2017

This is such a powerful post! I am trying hard to no longer be a yes woman…Sometimes the old yes woman comes out but I am trying hard.

June 9, 2017

YES! I can relate!

I have been in the exact same place: burnt out and praying for God to teach me what to let go of in order for me to thrive again. I really loved this piece; thank you for sharing!

June 9, 2017

YES! I believe He will give you that guidance!

Yes yes yes to so much about this post. I have had to step back on some relationships as well. It has been so freeing to put time into what matters most. Thank you for sharing this post!

June 9, 2017

Yes, it is so much more fulfilling.

June 9, 2017

Yes to saying No!!!

June 9, 2017

I love that verse form Galatians. Thank you for the timely reminder.

June 9, 2017

Yes me too!

June 9, 2017

So much yessss!! I’m so guilty of not saying no enough… especially to myself!

June 9, 2017

YES!!!

June 9, 2017

Thank you for this awesome post! I really needed to read this. I, too, find myself overwhelmed because of my inability to say “no”. This post has given me encouragement that it’s okay to not do it all!

June 9, 2017

That’s awesome! I hope it helps you too!

June 9, 2017

I used to struggle with this a lot, so your post really resonated with me. When you put it in terms of faith and God, it puts things in a different, more intentional light.

June 9, 2017

I’m so happy! I’m still working on it too girl!

June 9, 2017

I love this. My perspective really changed when I realized it wasn’t so much about saying “no” to things as it was about making the essentials a priority and allowing the rest to fall away.

June 9, 2017

YES! Exactly!!

You know you’re singing my song!! Sometimes we have to say “no” to say “yes”!

June 9, 2017

So very true!!

June 9, 2017

YES! I need to start saying “no” more often.

June 10, 2017

Good luck mama! It’s worth it!

June 10, 2017

It can be so hard to say no, but it is a skill we must all learn to use. Thanks for sharing, great post!!

June 10, 2017

Yes! I totally agree!

June 12, 2017

Congrats on choosing to take care of yourself and heal your relationships. I agree that just telling the truth is the best way to say no. I also feel that we don’t have to say a lot or give an explanation if we just say we can’t take something on. When we use fewer words there are fewer ways for people to try and hook in and engage in a discussion or provide “solutions” that will make you say yes. So, I keep it simple, truthful, and always riding on the energy of love.

June 12, 2017

YES!! I totally agree!

June 12, 2017

This is a great post! I’ve had to get better at saying no because my health isn’t good and if I overdo it I really pay for it, but then I sometimes fall into the trap of saying yes when my health is better just for the sake of saying yes and not because I really want to do it. Just because I CAN do something doesn’t mean that I should!

June 12, 2017

Wow! Thank you!!

June 13, 2017

Love this post, saying no is something i struggle at.

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