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The Word No…

by on February 1, 2013

I have this very specific problem, in which I can’t seem to say the word “No” when someone asks me for help.  I find myself hemming and hawing for a few moments, as though THIS time I will finally be able to get the word out of my mouth, and then it’s like something possesses my body and the word “sure” slips through my lips. It’s bizarre.  I have had dozens of people over the years tell me that it’s just a mental block, and I need to toughen up, but it really is physically painful for me to decline when someone needs me.

I would love to blame the fact that I’m a mom for this particular flaw in my character, but the truth is that I’ve been saying “yes” for my whole life *whispers* that’s how I ended up pregnant the first time…and the second time….and yep, the third time too. 😉 Currently in my daily life; I’m working two careers, trying to spend time with Mr. King, raising three kids, promoting new books, blogging, writing, editing, playing kids taxi service to violin, tutoring, band camp, intramurals, doctor’s appointments, and daycare, packing our house to move, cleaning out a rental house because the tenants have moved on, and of course attending PTO meetings/events…*whew*…it only makes sense that I would say “No” if someone else asked for my time, right?

Yeah, that would be the INTELLIGENT answer. But that’s not the one I give. I say “sure” “no problem” and before I know it, I’m giving up another hour of my precious sleep to make chili for the two hundred people supposed to attend the school chili feed, or glue beads to cardboard boxes for the Valentine’s Day class parties, or stuffing envelopes trying to raise funds for a friend with cancer, or packing boxes for Soldiers overseas because they might not have anyone else sending them things. I’m a people pleaser by nature. How do I break the cycle?

This month I’m trying a few new things to cut down on my obligations. The kids are riding with friends to come of their activities, I’ve cut back my hours at my day job to devote more hours to my writing, I’m stepped down from my place as PTO secretary, and I’m pre-scheduling my blog posts. I still have to move our whole household, but every baby step gives me breathing room. Are you a “yes” person or do you know someone who is?

Tell me about it in the comment. I’d love to hear of anyone who has overcome this particular character flaw!

As always, Live, Laugh, and Love like today is your only chance!~Lori

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  1. no1lefthere permalink

    I WAS a yes person… I finally got to be a more NO person. I was sooo worn out I was snapping on people whose fault, it was not. Finally I had to stand up and say Im done. I lost plenty of friends when I started declining to help all the time.. BUt I made new ones in the process as well 🙂

  2. Cherie Clark permalink

    I too am a YES girl. This problem meant that i did not get n=my weekend off. I sadid YES to working someone elses shift. My yes can be a yep, or a oh well there is no one so… or sure I dont have a life. You are not alone.

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