Humans make almost a million decisions in their lives. In all that decision-making often times you get to say No. Does that ever feel like a challenge for you?
It definitely has for me because saying No kicks up a fear of hurting others. I’ve been afraid that by saying No I will damage my relationships. But I gotta tell you, the relationship I’ve caused the most damage to in all this has been my relationship with myself.
Because when I’ve not said No out of fear of hurting others the side-effect has often been me saying No to my own wants, needs and dreams. And then I beat myself up, and I don’t feel happy doing any of the things. Have you felt this way?
One day I got asked a life-changing, brilliant, question: What if every No I said, was actually a Yes to something else?
The question hit me right in the heart, so I started using this as a regular practice. Asking myself what I am saying Yes to when I say No.
I’ve said No to spending time with my family and Yes to advancing my career and building an empire. I’ve said No to being with my friends because I was saying Yes to coaching leadership teams that were committed to massive world change. I’ve said No to going out and being social, because I was saying Yes to staying in and taking care of my health so I could give from a full cup.
What’s funny is that as I wrote these examples I thought of times when I’ve been in the same situations and actually chosen in the opposite direction! Because the shift hasn’t been so much in what I say No to or Yes to, the shift has been dramatic in the way I feel when I make my choices.
I’ve gone from the dis-empowering feeling of making choices out of fear, to the powerful ownership I feel from making choices out love and vision. When I make a choice based on my values and what’s important to me in that moment, the game changes. My fears of what could go wrong are lessened and my dreams of what could go right expand.
I encourage you to be in this practice with me. Because a world where everyone makes choices from a place of love and vision sounds like the kind of world we all deserve to be living in!