Saturday, September 28, 2013

Setting boundaries: learning to say yes and no

Recently I wrote about saying yes to life. But today I wanted to address saying no. These past few weeks have been really draining on me. I'm not sure if my body is just fighting off the viruses that are being passed around right now, or if I've just hit my stress tolerance.

Either way, it doesn't matter. What does matter is what I'm doing right now. Ironically I'm giving a presentation today on Stress Management and Boundaries. Last night while trying to work on incorporating stress management techniques into the presentation outline, I crashed. I realized that having been in clinic since 8am, my body and mind couldn't take much more.

I fell asleep next to my notebook at 7:30pm; woke up abruptly when my boyfriend got home at 9pm and then after watching one of our favourite shows together, I was back asleep by 10pm, and didn't roll out of bed until almost 9am.

I knew that I needed to listen to my body and I totally realized just how badly I needed rest. I also knew when to say no. I said no to my work - even though my presentation was the next day, I couldn't give it the attention it deserved in that moment. I also knew that spending just the 40 minutes with my boyfriend was all I could do. He was all ready to stay up and watch a movie, but my priority was on rest.

It didn't bother me, having to say no, because I'd rather say no then be full of resentment.

I read a comment on Jacki Carr's twitter that said "Resentment is like drinking a poison and waiting for the other person to die. Don't drink the poison."

If you say no to someone, what's the worst that could happen? Now ask yourself how likely it is that that situation will occur.

Sometimes we are so busy trying to do everything, and be everything for everyone else around us that we forget to think about what we need.

Remind yourself that it's okay to say no. Friends and family might be a bit ruffled for like 60 seconds, but they'll get over it. And then you'll realize that it was no big deal at all. They're still your friends and family, but you'll feel better knowing that you've taken care of yourself.