Tuesday, February 15, 2011

"No" is a complete sentence

While reading an article today titled, "Becoming the Person You Were Meant to Be: Where to Start" by Anne Lamott, one single sentence yelled at me from the ink of the pages:

You can say no, no is a complete sentence.

Wow right? Wow.

I know that I struggle with this. I have always been a "yes" person...and it hasn't always been in my best interest. I'm pretty sure you can understand, at least I hope you do. I always want to help, I always want to be perfect, I always want to please....but it's completely and totally okay to say "no" sometimes. This is something I am learning. I found this other article (surprise!) titled, "The Power of Saying No," that had some handy advice I wanted to share:
  1. When someone makes a request, it is OKAY to ask for time to think it over (sounds simple right?!)
  2. Remember that "no" is an honorable response. (You mean I don't have to give 5 reasons why I'm saying "no" because I feel guilty?!)
  3. If "no" is your response (and it is perfectly okay if it is) then start your sentence with the word. It is easier to keep the commitment to say "no" when it is the first word out of your mouth.
All simple things you and I can think over in our daily lives when a situation that deserves a "yes" or "no" answer is presented to us right?

So here's my challenge: I challenge you to say "no" to at least 1 thing a week.....and in my case, I'm going to leave my 2 year old out of this (because he hears "no" in many forms throughout the day as it is) so feel free to make an exception as well.

And when you do say "no," make sure you take notice and give yourself some credit for saying such an important two letter word.


  1. I actually did that today. I was asked to be in charge of writing a grant for my school district's libraries but I felt that it should be someone who has more experience at the high school level. I also had just committed to being the editor for the California School Library Association. I was very surprised to say, "No, that doesn't fit into my life right now," but I'm glad that I did.


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