High-achievers are driven to say “yes.”
Yes, to show up.
Yes, to help a friend.
Yes, to take on more.
I used to believe that if I didn’t say yes, I was inadequate, letting someone down, or not capable of doing it all. I thought that the word no could negatively impact my success or how people perceived me.
Yet, over time, I learned it can do just the opposite. It helped me choose and achieve my most important priorities without impacting my personal well-being. Because when I say no, I’m saying yes to myself and greater self-love.
The practice of saying no is about setting healthy boundaries. Boundaries are parameters that help protect your energy. They are a way to communicate your desires and show others how you should be treated. They keep you from overextending yourself with commitments, which could otherwise lead to burnout or feelings of resentment.
Saying yes on autopilot can start to affect your well-being. Yet setting healthy boundaries doesn’t mean saying no mindlessly. Boundaries establish a healthy balance that respects others while caring for yourself.
Learning to set firm boundaries and say no is an act of self-love and love for others. Take a moment to reflect on the times when you may have felt anger or resentment towards yourself or others. Perhaps you became fatigued from taking on too much or felt taken advantage of by someone else.
If any of this resonates with you, it might be time to re-evaluate your boundaries and embrace self-love.
Why Say NO
Enrich your relationships
Setting healthy boundaries creates transparency, which can be a strong foundation for trust in relationships. When you set limits on your time and energy, your loved ones will have a deeper understanding of your needs and desires. If someone refuses to respect the boundaries you set, it may be time to re-evaluate that relationship.
Become more effective
Spreading yourself too thin won’t help you accomplish more. Saying no helps you stay focused on your primary vision. You’ll be more effective with your time and energy when you don’t try to manage it all.
Experience greater joy and well-being
Saying no to others means saying yes to yourself. Saying yes to yourself means more time to enjoy the things you love without feelings of stress or fatigue. As much as you may want to please others, make yourself a priority by choosing your own well-being.
If you’re a YES person, setting up healthy boundaries may feel uncomfortable at first. You might feel guilt or stress when saying no to a friend or client. It might feel unnatural to go against your urge to please others. Yet, wouldn’t you rather honor your feelings than feel resentment because you said yes when you wanted to say no?
When to Say NO
Your plate is already full
If you find yourself feeling stressed and too busy to fit in yet another request for your time, no could be your best option. Compromising your own well-being isn’t good for anyone involved.
You feel internal resistance
Having extra time to spare isn’t a good reason to say yes. When you feel resistant to a request for your time, trust your instincts.
There’s no time for those you love
As a high-achiever you may tend to get caught up in all that you’re doing. Yet setting aside time for yourself and those you love is an excellent reason to say no. Prioritize your time with loved ones and do what you truly desire.
When you set and enforce healthy boundaries, you avoid feelings of resentment, stress, and overwhelm. Saying NO empowers you to take charge of your well-being and renew self-love.