You can’t please everyone. No matter how hard you try, you’re never going to make everyone you meet happy, and that’s perfectly okay! It’s not your job to make everyone around you happy. That’s not the purpose of your life.
When you say “yes” to everything and anything that comes your way, it can leave you overworked, burned out, and it closes doors for you. Every “yes” is a “no” to something that could have been much greater. Saying yes to everything can actually hurt you in the long run.
If you’re the person who just can’t say no, I totally understand. It’s hard to say no, especially when you’re afraid of disappointing people. It can be difficult to say no and can leave you feeling guilty or make you feel like you’re being rude, ungrateful or unkind.
One thing I’ve had to remind myself over the years is that it’s not my responsibility to make other people happy. It’s just not possible, and the only person I can truly make happy is myself. But if constantly saying yes to everything is causing conflict and unhappiness in my own life, then what good am I doing if I’m making myself miserable?
Why You Need to Say “No”
Take a look at your own life. Are you accomplishing the goals you set up for yourself, or are you finding it hard to accomplish them because you’re too busy trying to reach other people’s goals for them? Saying yes to everything spreads out your time and energy and makes it difficult for you to focus on yourself. Eventually you’ll find yourself headed in different directions that are completely unaligned with your goals or the path you want to be on.
When you’re not on the path that you want to be on, and you’re beating to the tune of someone else’s drum, it can cause you to feel unhappy, depressed, and resentful, among other feelings. When you’re dedicating so much of your time to other people and other things, it makes it hard for you to make time for yourself.
Don’t be afraid of saying no for the fear of looking selfish. You need to make time for yourself, and it’s not selfish to do so. You deserve to have more time for yourself, especially if you’ve been dedicated to helping everyone around you. We all need a little “me” time!
Sometimes we just have to say no because saying yes would create conflict in other areas of our life. Occasionally we might have other obligations that would cause conflict if we were to say yes to something else. I’m going to use my sister as a perfect example to this.
She is a Sous Chef at a restaurant, but she’s also pregnant. She is constantly overworked and her co-workers expect her to be available at all hours of the business day when she’s not there, just in case something goes wrong. We were across the country at a funeral at the beginning of October and her co-workers were calling and texting her non-stop about work, during the funeral. Another time she was at a Doctor’s appointment for a routine pregnancy check up and had co-workers texting and calling her. In her multiple years working at this restaurant, she has said yes to everything and now everyone expects her to be there whenever they need her, and they get angry with her when she doesn’t respond or answer phone calls.
I have personally seen my sister become burned out and overworked to the point where she’s had meltdowns and almost quit her job because of it. When saying yes gets to the point where you can’t even live your own life outside of work, then things need to change.
Learn to say no more, for your own health and your happiness. You might be helping others out, but you’re not doing yourself any favors by caving in and saying yes.