Perhaps you have ever felt guilty for saying “no” to someone, possibly because of the feeling that you feel regret about what they will think of you. Think that when you say “No” to another person you are saying “yes” to yourself, your emotional needs, your desires, your dreams and even your physical and emotional safety.

Practice is wise and acting on it is what will help you make things in your life different. You may have heard people say, “Sometimes saying ‘no’ to someone else says ‘yes’ to yourself,” to your emotional needs, your desires, your dreams, or even your safety. But knowing that the practice is wise and acting on it are completely different things.  When you have “the please disease,” worrying about disappointing others or appearing  selfish in defending your personal boundaries can seem unappealing to you.

Fortunately, you don’t have to act or feel bad when you need to decline a request or invitation. If you tend to overcommit, and too often when your inner voice suggests otherwise, consider the following strategies to keep in mind from now on. You can be kind, generous, and stand up for your limits at the same time.

Saying “NO” saves relationships

You may think that you will hurt someone else’s feelings, that you will avoid resentment that can destroy relationships . The reality is that when our people do things that we disagree with, but don’t say, those problems add up over time. If problems continue to occur but are never addressed, our hurt and anger ultimately turn to resentment. Setting clear, healthy boundaries is what every relationship needs to thrive.

The analogy of the oxygen mask on an airplane

When you are on an airplane, you are instructed to put on your own oxygen mask before helping other people.  That should apply to self-care as well . You cannot help, support, or stay present with others so fully if your own emotional tank is running low.

The fact that you care to say no without looking mean shows that you are a loving person. Keep this in mind and focus on compassion for yourself and those who care about you, because really, people who care about you want the best for you even if you say “no.”

Limits are not a rejection of another person, but a compassionate act of thinking for yourself. This way you will be much kinder and feel good about respecting your own limits, wants and needs, instead of saying “yes” to avoid a problem.

Provide an alternative that you feel comfortable with

The word “no” doesn’t have to end the conversation or rule out the parts you’re looking for. By providing an alternative, you can protect your own needs and wants without rejecting the other person. For example, if someone invites you to a party, social anxiety makes it anything but attractive to you, for example, you can say, “I won’t go to the party, but I’d love to see you another time. How about lunch? The next Tuesday?”

If it helps you stay safe, lie

An exception to the honesty guide has to do with your personal safety. If someone scares you, trust your instincts. Intuition is always correct in at least two important ways. It is always in response to something. It is always the best for you. If someone asks you to sit next to you in a cafe and you don’t feel comfortable, tell them what you want to keep the boundaries clear, even if it’s a lie, like you’re waiting for someone.

Say phrases “I feel”

Keeping your focus on your needs and feelings when rejecting an offer can help you minimize any feelings of guilt , the phrases “I feel” are appropriate in any case.

Instead of saying, “No, I don’t want to go with you because you always take too long to get ready, and then I get stuck waiting for you most of the night,” is enough to say, “No thanks, I don’t want to go.” If the person is looking for a more in-depth explanation, focus on your feelings rather than the logistics, saying something like, “I often feel impatient or uncomfortable when we attend these events, so I would rather do something else.”

Consider the situation in reverse

Let’s say you don’t want to attend a meeting because it’s your only night off all week and you could really get more sleep. Now imagine that you are organizing the meeting. You invite a friend to attend, only to find that she was stressed and exhausted and only attended for your sake. You might be grateful that she made the effort, but you also care about your friend’s well – being .

Feeling guilty at the prospect of saying “no” often stems from the assumption that you will hurt the other person and retaliate. Your applicant may be momentarily disappointed, but understand and then get help elsewhere.

The strongest “No” invite the strongest “Yes”

The adage really is true. Every time you say “no” to one person or opportunity, you inevitably say “yes” to something else. No one can be in two places or do everything at once.

Happiness comes from living how you need it, how you really want it. As your inner voice tells you … as your instinct allows you to assume that it must be better for you, as long as you listen to it. The happiness comes from being who you really are rather than what you think you should be assumed.

Sometimes, you can have a feeling of helplessness that happens if you feel compelled to say “yes” when you don’t want to … Especially if it is towards everything that others ask of you. This can cause depression, so it is better to say “NO” whenever you see fit to safeguard your well-being … it’s worth it. 

Elle Mcdonald

I am Elle Mcdonald Specializations in Psychology . Graduated in psychology from the University of Tennessee in 2000. Diploma of Advanced Studies in the Department of Personality, Evaluation and psychological treatments with excellent results.

First Level of Master in Clinical Psychology at the Center for Behavioral Therapists (recognized with a scientific-professional nature by the College of Psychologists)

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