It has been well-documented that women find it hard to say no.
One thing I know from speaking to and coaching women is that the inability to say no can have a negative impact on our relationships, our well-being, our careers, our levels of creative fun and our personal fulfillment.
Many of us have been raised directly or indirectly to be good girls, to always be available, to lend a hand.
Of course we all like to contribute to other people in ways that support them, but in doing so it is incredibly important that this is not at the loss of our own well- being and experience of life for long periods of time.
Signs that we are doing too much include exhaustion, anxiety, resentment, anger, apathy, resignation, constant complaining and waking up dreaming of getting back to bed again.
In her book The Power of Vulnerability, Brene Brown talks about feeling uncomfortable versus resentment.
Would you rather be uncomfortable for a few minutes or resentful for a few days, months, years?
Here are 5 lighthearted ways to say no
Saying no can be lighthearted, we can use humour to make it easier on us and the person we are saying no to, as long as it remains a clear no.
Whenever we are asked to do more than we are already doing, we are able to:
I challenge you to say no today. You will be amazed how the world keeps turning, you will still have friends, you will still have a job and you will have more space to say yes to what really matters to you. (Of course, if making the gluten-free, paleo, vegan, sugar-free, biodynamic, egg-free meringues for the school fair is what matters to you, you should not say no to that, you should say no to something else so that you can say yes to that.)
Saying no is a practice many of us have to learn; it is not always easy, but it is always worth it.
Kemi Nekvapil's annual event Flourish is focused on women empowering themselves to move from surviving life to thriving in life. Join the event here.
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