With your hand on your throat (where your voice and power arise) and a response from your heart (where the truth comes from), who hears what you really want to say? Only you? Only the pit of your stomach when it goes queasy and says to your mind: “I should have said no. Why can’t I say no? Why do they take advantage of me? Isn’t my time as valuable as theirs? Why do they make me feel guilty if I say no?”
Because I speak from experience, I know what a big deal it is to have no boundaries on what you’re willing to take on for others. It’s not an unusual Caregiver trait. I’m an expert. But, I’m a recovering expert and want to share with you how I discovered how to say “no” and be okay with that. No guilt.
First, I paid attention to how others handled it when they were asked to do something for which they said no. I observed that for some it was difficult. You could see it in their face and hear it in their voice. For others it was fairly easy. I’m guessing the ones it was difficult for were just starting to get their power back. The latter had practice.
Most people that have no problem saying “no” might tell you it’s not so hard, “just say no.” But, it is at first. It’s hard because we’re used to not telling the truth. We learn this at an early age if we don’t have strong roll models. We even think it’s okay because we see it as being a nice person. It’s like a white lie. But, a lie is a lie, no matter what color the ink is. Sorry, I’m being tough here, saying “yes” when you want to say “no” is not truthful. As a former non-truthful, no boundaries practitioner, I can HONESTLY say I’m recovering. And it’s empowering!
You take baby steps, you buckle-up, armed with your weapon that is TRUTH. Once you realize you’re not the honest person you always thought you were, that will get you. Now that you’re aware there’s no going back. You’ll recognize your moment when you need your reinforcement, your HONOR. It will come out of the blue, someone will ask you something and you recognize that this is it. Do you respond with TRUTH or do you remain a liar and say yes when you want to say no? Are you willing to find your voice (it’s hidden in TRUTH) or will you go on for the rest of your life knowing that you could have been a more powerful and happier human being? You’ll slip, it’s okay, that slip will teach you how easy it’s been to be less than truthful much of your life. You’ll have another chance very soon. Don’t be hard on yourself unless you don’t start improving. It should happen quickly. It gets easier with each opportunity. The feeling of being empowered is intoxicating.
Anita Moorjani, author of “Dying to be Me”, is one of the people I admire most in this world. Her Facebook video discussion has been added to this post because she brilliantly addresses the significance of being able to say “NO” and has several suggestions for Caregivers that I hope you will find interesting and helpful in your own lives.
It’s amazing how your life just perks up when you live in truth. You’ve heard the saying, “The truth shall set you free.” You will finally understand the meaning therein. It seems like a little thing, saying NO. But it’s a huge Yes in your life when you have boundaries! It’s all you’ve ever lacked. Otherwise, you’re perfect and I love you.