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  • Ashish Patel

That Time I Tried Saying No Instead of Yes to Everything

Ever since I can remember, I have always tried saying yes to everything.

For example, committing to an event that I did not really have an interest in, helping a friend’s friend or simply saying yes to not let anyone down. However there comes a point, when saying yes to everything can weigh heavy on you.

Rejection comes up quite a bit, as we tend to say yes to everything to not be rejected. This is because by saying yes, we feel we are protecting ourselves from the possibility of missing out or letting the other party down.

We also may feel that as we say yes, we are keeping ourselves in a good light with everyone else. However, this can prove unhealthy, as we may find that by always giving in, we may be getting time for our own selves off even more. Eventually making way for low self-esteem, low confidence and feeling burnt out all the time, as we begin to decrease our own sense of inner happiness and ‘me time’.

As I started to say no to everything, I found myself giving more importance to me and freeing up time for my own self-care. This also gave me an opportunity to really understand myself better, from my goals, aspirations, and inner beliefs.

Although I eventually started to say yes more than no again, I did feel a sense of control and a build in self-confidence. This is because after giving myself a little time to cut myself off from everything for a while, I began to see things clearer.

For example, before I started to commit again to phone calls, side hobbies and more, I asked myself one question before resuming everything. This question was “Do I have time for this now?” If my answer was yes, then I would commit, however if I had any hesitation or doubts then I would confidently postpone it to a better time. After doing this more often, I really found this simple question to hold a lot of power, as it freed me from my own fears of rejection and allowed me to commit more surely and confidently without feeling guilty if I couldn’t commit to the particular activity in the now.


· Saying No does not mean that you can’t handle your responsibilities, it simply means you need more time to complete them.

· By allocating ‘self-care’ slots for ourselves, we are giving our mind time to relax and refresh, whilst also allowing our body to destress in the making too.

· Undercommitting is better than overcommitting, as you are giving yourself more time to complete things more effectively whilst also not holding yourself to a set of high expectations for long periods.

· Taking a step back and assessing your goals and where you are going, can really help in balancing your mind and can give yourself time to think more clearly and confidently.

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