Monday, July 5, 2010

The Art of Saying "No."

I've always been a pleaser.  Blame my birth order as the eldest child or my propensity to try to fix everything I see as "broken," but I just want to make people happy.  In many ways this is a blessing, since I am going into a helping profession that demands lending an ear sans judgment on a ridiculously regular basis.  But I've started, yes, just barely started, to realize I need to start policing my resources.

This realization came after a particularly arduous day at work, followed by another "crisis" that demanded my attention into the wee hours of the morning.  Do you know who I didn't get to ask how their day was, after talking about how everyone else's day was ad nauseam?  Shug.  Do you know who had to eat dinner by himself as I attended to the rest of the world's issues?  Shug.  Do you know who pulled the covers over me and turned out the light when I had crumpled into bed after I had exhausted every last resource of energy I had for the day? Shug.

So, lines in the sand have been drawn.  I am now set to protect the modicum of safety and sanity we've built together.  This is hard for me.  I'm practically unwinding my own DNA every time I tell a person "no" now.  It's hard because I do care about these people that ask and ask and ask, but I also need to start caring a little more about me.  I'm not talking about being selfish, just reserving enough for myself so I am capable enough to attend to my own relationships and priorities.  Typing that just gave me a migraine.

Is it difficult for you to tell people "no?"

1 comment:

  1. Yes! I'm also the eldest & I have to learn the same thing. I do too much for others sacrificing my time...I blame it on good ol' fashioned Catholic guilt though. It's tough to find a happy medium!


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