The Fine Art of Saying No

This past weekend I got bonked over the head with a lesson I, apparently, needed to learn. I didn’t just get hit with it once, oh no, the Universe decided it was something I needed to hear repeatedly. And then I got to put the lesson into practice.

The first instance of this lesson was quite innocuous. It was simply a Facebook discussion started by a writer talking about how people responded to him saying no thank you to sweets (he’s diabetic) by continuing to push said sweets on him or demanding to know why. That discussion got me thinking about how seldom people are allowed to simply say no to something. More often than not it turns into a giant production of the other person trying to wheedle or guilt the person saying no into saying yes. The second instance was less subtle. It was a blog post talking about how it’s okay to say no to things and not feel guilty about it. At the time I read this post, I was struggling with whether or not I should attend a start of summer party some friends were hosting on Sunday.

My husband and I had spent the last few weekends running all over Creation doing things with or for other people and we were starting to get burned out. We have several more busy weekends ahead of us and something had to give. We just wanted a weekend to ourselves where we didn’t have to be anywhere or do anything.

It was a tough decision to make because the friends throwing the party live on the other side of the state and we don’t get to see them very often. It was made even harder when my soul sister (soul sister in the sense that we must have been real sisters in past lives because there’s no other way to describe our relationship) messaged me asking if we were going to make it to the party. We haven’t seen each other since her birthday in March and we’ve both been missing each other like crazy. Despite the overwhelming guilt her message stirred up (completely not her intention), I stuck to my guns and told her that, as much as we missed her, we had to take this weekend for ourselves.

On Monday, I was recharged, re-energized, and ready to tackle the million and one little things that needed doing. I also got one last reminder of my lesson – the author who started it all posted a follow-up discussion on his blog about saying no, setting boundaries, and having them respected.

Have you ever had an experience where it was obvious that the Universe had a lesson for you to learn and it was going to make sure you learned it?



One response to “The Fine Art of Saying No

  1. Mine was a past relationship. Everything about it was kicking me in the teeth, telling me to get out, but I was convinced I could salvage it. Eventually I learned some things don’t want to be salvaged. Some people keep digging a deeper hole dragging everyone else into it along with them.

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