Last week, after spending a rather large portion of my day feeling blocked and uninspired, I decided to stop thinking so much and just write about what was on my heart. So I wrote My 5 Favorite Ways To Prioritize Rest In A Busy Summer. This week, I want to piggy back off of that idea and dig into the shift that needed to happen for me to actually be able to slow down. And from the title of this post I bet you can guess what it was…yep, I needed to start saying ‘no’.
I feel like this idea of saying ‘no’ is around a lot in the circles of us gals who are trying to slow down so we can live our best lives (not everyone else’s). But time and time again, what should be a simple act of saying ‘no’ gets so complicated and hard to do.
Well, I’ve finally figured out why, at least for me, this little word can be so loaded. And we’re going deep with this one…are you ready?
Saying ‘no’ was always such a struggle for me because in my head my worth was conditional on outside factors. And if I’m being honest, sometimes it still is. This was directly linked to me being a yes girl because I only felt worthy when I drove 4 hours to make it to my cousins birthday party, was part of that lake weekend my friend was throwing, or was invited to my college friend’s wedding.
And when I found myself in a place where I felt like I was never enough (a place that I still visit every so often), I realized that even the things I did to live a healthy and fulfilled life, I was sometimes only doing to prove my worth.
I felt the pressure to prove I was a good wife by making a healthy dinner every night for my husband, that I was a good homemaker by cleaning the house every week, that I was a good daughter by visiting my mom every month.
So my real secret to saying ‘no’ is only saying ‘yes’ to the things that bring me joy, connection, and fulfillment. And saying ‘no’ to anything that I’m only doing to prove my worth (either to myself or to others). Because let’s be real, although some of this pressure was coming from outside influences, the majority of it was coming from this girl right here typing this.
It can be tough to get real with yourself and unpack why you’re saying ‘yes’ to things. But when you give yourself the time and space to practice, it start to get a lot easier. You might find that it actually becomes instinctual to know the things to say ‘no’ to. But until then, know that you’re worthy as you are, even on the days that you don’t show up as your best. And you don’t need to be busy all the time or serving others to prove it! Oh, and I’m over here learning right there with you.
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