The Strategy of “NO!”

toddler with red adidas sweat shirt
Photo by mohamed Abdelgaffar on

One of the biggest differences between an adult and a child is the realization that there are things we must do that we don’t want to.  When we were kids we may have avoided our dislikes by stomping our feet and screaming ”No! No! No!” And our parents or other adults relieved what ailed us.  They made things better by giving us what we asked for or handling something on our behalf. But, was making things easier a realistic approach to life?

In my upbringing having a tantrum was not an option.  You just did what needed to be done or you were smacked on your bum (oh relax… another day, another time).  That said, was forcing the issue the right way either?

As adults, our lives are encumbered with places we don’t want to go, and things we don’t want to do.  We are belabored by our labels; wife, husband, employee, mother, father, grandparent, friend, sister, brother and on and on.  We carry the weighty obligations associated with these roles throughout our lives, some heavier than others.

  • What about those obligations that have no personal value?
  • What do we do when we don’t want to do something?

What if…Wait for it…we just said “NO!”?

Wait a minute… take a moment to think about something weighing on you that is a real pain in the you-know-what.  What would happen if you just said “NO!”?  Unless your answer is that someone would literally die, why not say “NO!”?

As the 2018 holidays approach we are thrust into what I refer to as “Obligation Palooza”  mostly because we fear the reactions of others.

Here are a few examples:

  • If we don’t stop by so-and-so’s house? Oh boy, she will be really mad!
  • If I don’t bring that dish everyone loves, I am really gonna hear about it!
  • I can’t show up without gifts for everyone, even though I lost my job.  The kids will be so disappointed.

And on, and on, and on.  STOP!  Think about the value you place on the feelings of others to the detriment of your own.  Why can’t we be honest with ourselves and others and express our feelings?  We don’t have to stomp our feet and make a scene.  Just make a phone call (or have a face-to-face) and say “NO!”  Don’t be a chicken shit and send a text or email!  Be an adult, be gracious, honor yourself and “bow out!”

Life is filled with situations that frustrate and annoy us. The important thing is that we face life with boldness, openness, and sincerity.  Our actions (holiday or not) must come from the heart.

Let’s give ourselves a gift this year.  The gift of self honoring!

two massage table near palm trees
Photo by on

Do something great for yourself.  Examples? Of course, I have examples:

  • Take yourself away for a night or two. Go stay at your favorite hotel and ask for late check-out!
  • Jump into a hot bubble bath with your favorite flower petals, at a spa or at home.  Where ever you will be the most at peace and uninterrupted.
  • Go to see your favorite sports team or band play live!
  • Take yourself out for your favorite meal!
  • Go see a movie you’ve wanted to see!

Remember these things are for you… not you and your spouse/partner, not with the kids, just for you!

Trust me, if you begin to prioritize yourself (self-oritization, I just made that up) in your life, you will bring your best SELF to your life.  You will manage the Obligation Palooza of everyday life more authentically.

If you think this is selfishness, I ask that you schedule 3 dates with yourself!  It is like a burst of energy. You will see how much better you feel and how much more of you-you can offer! Or you will realize that you are giving way too much of you away and start making decisions about where and how to make adjustments.

Isn’t it the whole point to live your best life?  Do this by living life at your best!  No kicking and screaming necessary.

A little self-oritization and a few strategic NO’s go a long way!

Love, Light, and Self-oritization!



Be a friend…Share this with someone struggling through Obligation Palooza!

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