Saying NO is a Self Love Practice
Hey Tribe! Thanks for checking out my podcast today! I am so blessed for every one of my listeners out there, and I am overjoyed that I get to share with you some excellent advice for improving your life!
Today, we're going to talk all about the word "no." How often have you wanted to say "no," but you felt obligated to say "yes"? Maybe it was when someone asked you to do a favor that you didn't want to do or asked you to attend a social event that you didn't feel like attending.
Telling someone "no" can often lead to feelings of guilt and insecurity. People often feel that if they say "no," they're not a good enough friend, daughter, girlfriend, or co-worker. Well, I'm here to tell you that there is nothing wrong with telling people "no," and it's essential for our success!
I have struggled with saying "no" in the past. Whenever I said "yes" to something that I didn't want to do, it took away pieces of my authenticity. I couldn't do that thing or go to that event feeling like my full authentic self. Even in the times that I had fun doing something that I initially didn't want to do, I still felt like I'd rather be doing something else.
No matter what age bracket you're in, you can't keep living your life thinking that other peoples' needs trump your own. If you want to live every day with happiness, confidence, freedom, and abundance, you can't afford to waste your time doing things that you don't want to do! You must detach your guilt from the word "no" so that you can begin living your fullest life!
Saying "No" Establishes Boundaries
Saying "no" is a self-love practice that we need to feel comfortable with. When we say "no," we set boundaries for ourselves and establish that we're living life on our own terms and not anyone else's. You need to clearly state and enforce boundaries.
Think about the times that you've said "yes" but you've wanted to say "no." Not only did that make you do something that you didn't want to do, but you also failed to set clear boundaries with what you want and don't want. You're choosing to please others rather than pleasing yourself.
It’s essential for your well-being and your business to please yourself rather than worry about pleasing others. Feeling obligated to “yes” takes away your time — time that you could spend improving your business and yourself. When you say “no,” you’re leaving room in your time for opportunities of growth.
An essential resource that I would highly recommend for overcoming the guilt that we attach to "no" is Lori Harder's book A Tribe Called Bliss: Break Through Superficial Friendships, Create Real Connections, Reach Your Highest Potential. Through this book, I learned all about how we need boundaries to protect us. Boundaries protect our happiness and authenticity and also help us stay focused on what we want. Establishing boundaries enables us to focus on strengthening our relationships, finances, health, and businesses!
Lack vs. Abundance
I'm going to rewind and talk to you about something that I discussed in a previous episode that is super relevant to saying "no." On my eleventh episode of The Jenn Kenney Show titled "Money Mindset 101," — if you haven't already checked out that episode, go listen to it after you finish this one! I talked all about coming from a place of abundance rather than lack.
Often, people come from a place of lack rather than abundance. An entrepreneur starting a business because they are struggling financially is an example of coming from a place of lack rather than abundance. Their mindsets are focused on a lack of money, so they're starting a business.
People do this all the time when it comes to relationships too. They start a relationship because they don't feel loved elsewhere. They're not approaching the relationship from a place of abundance but from a lack of love in their lives.
Giving up our precious time for others because we feel too guilty to say "no" comes from a place of lack because it's rooted in the desire to be loved by everyone. We're afraid to say "no" because we worry that we'll disappoint people — which will cause them to stop loving us.
One of the keys to learning to say "no" is realizing that no matter what you do, not everyone will love you, and that's life. It's not your job to get everyone to love you or accept you. It's your job to be yourself. Be yourself every single day rather than worry about others' opinions of you.
All the time, people critique how I am. They say that I'm too loud or that I'm too driven. I'm not responsible for the way that they perceive me — I'm only responsible for being me. Even when it comes to the work that I do and this podcast, I don't do it for others' approval — I do it because I feel called to do it. I don't even necessarily try to please my clients. I try to help them and be honest, even if I have to tell them something that they don’t want to hear.
I do everything from a place of abundance rather than a place of lack. I love people, but I recognize that I can't let others impact my authenticity. I've created boundaries through my use of "no" because I love myself, and I love my life. I've rid myself of the burden of trying to be better in others' eyes. I'm done saying "yes" to please people so that I can pretend that I'm a better wife, daughter, or friend. In my life today, I recognize that my opinion is the only one that matters in whether or not I'm enough.
Disassociating Guilt From "No"
So how can you begin to put "no" into your vocabulary without feeling guilty? Your first step is to bring awareness to your uses of "yes" and "no." Bring awareness to where you are in your life when it comes to establishing boundaries so that you can start making changes.
The second step is to disassociate negative emotions with "no." You need to shift out of feeling selfish and guilty when saying "no." Your negative emotions have nothing to do with the person that you are. Don't feel guilty for saying "no" and think that you're a terrible friend or a bad person. You're not those things — you're the kind of person who establishes boundaries so that you can be you!
Establishing boundaries will make you a better friend, daughter, or girlfriend because you're being your full self. You're protecting yourself and showing self-love so that you can live your life happily and authentically.
Once you establish boundaries, when you say "yes,” you're showing up 100% as yourself. If you're saying "yes" out of obligation and people-pleasing rather than from a place of authenticity and abundance, you'll begin to resent the people in your life.
When you say "no," you're also opening yourself to more blessings, happiness, and confidence in your abundance. Your "no" tells the universe that you're ready for more and that you're being your full self!
Dissociate your negative feelings from "no" and associate the word with the feeling that you're opening yourself up to happiness, confidence, freedom, and abundance. Focus on the fact that when you say "no," you're saying "no" to stress and empty people-pleasing and saying "yes" to yourself!
Saying "No" to What Hinders Your Progress
I cannot stress enough how much you all will benefit from reading Lori Harder's A Tribe Called Bliss. It taught me so much about the power of "no." If you're serious about making progress in your life, then Lori's book is a must-read! Her book and podcast completely changed my life and even inspired me to do this podcast, so once you finish this episode and my "Money Mindset 101" episode, you NEED to check out her work!
In her book, Lori cited the billionaire Warren Buffet saying that, "really successful people say 'no' to almost everything," and that's because successful people say "no" to what isn't contributing to their goals. They say "no" to leave room for opportunities that will contribute to their happiness, confidence, freedom, and abundance.
If one of your goals is losing weight, you should say "no" to what interferes with that goal. You'll say "no" to going out to parties to drink excessively because that hinders your progress. If you’re serious about changing your life, then you need to establish boundaries to fully focus on your goals.
Today, I have some homework for all my listeners out there. I want you to ask yourself a few questions about boundaries and saying "no." The first question is, "What is the most pressing boundary that you need to set right now?" It could be an issue of scheduling or saying "no," or it could involve a relationship. Whatever it is, I want you to write it down right now.
The second question is, "How will you set this boundary?"Maybe you need to start saying “no” to a difficult friend, or maybe you need to establish more time for yourself away from your significant other.
The third and fourth questions are, "What will you gain by setting this boundary?" and "What will you lose?" You need to recognize that when you set boundaries, you risk losing some relationships. I have lost friends because of the boundaries I've set, but I gained so much more than what I lost! Are you willing to lose friendships to achieve happiness, confidence, freedom, and abundance?
I hope that this episode empowers you to use "no" and be your authentic self! Get out there and be the most confident and strong version of yourself today and every other day. Live every day with overflowing happiness, confidence, freedom, and abundance!