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THE POWER OF saying “NO!”

Updated: Feb 1, 2023

August 23, 2021

During many conversations about self-care with women, it has become very evident how difficult and problematic it is for women to use the N word, “NO”. No being the shortest and easiest word in the English language; yet it seems to be the hardest to pronounce when we are asked to overload ourselves with tasks or unwanted requests.

Exploring reasons as to why saying “No” to loved ones, friends, or even employers is such an effort, has sparked ongoing regular conversations amongst women and girls.

Some say that women and girls have been brought up to be “good girls,” and to be a good girl, one has to be a “yes girl”. Society says that it is the feminine way.

The notion of saying “No,” draws up too many negative connotations. Women and girls are trained to be positive at all times regardless of circumstances.

Often women grapple with many reasons as to why they chose to be “yes girls” and why we succumb to societal pressures. We succumb to societal pressures as a means of coping and surviving the pressures of society.

This is all about wanting to be accepted, loved and not wanting to be perceived as negative, uncooperative, and unproductive. Often, it is about wanting to be embraced and not be ostracized.

The pressures of being a “yes girl” crosses all cultures and boundaries and forces women to be overloaded with tasks, requests and actions that they may not readily wish to accept or even consider. They may be loaded with demands from others that may not be desirable to them, yet declining the request leaves them afraid of being rejected by the other forces.

Now, take a pause and check in with yourself.

How many times have you taken on a task or obliged to a request that you definitely did not want but were unable to say “No”? I suspect many times.

Saying “No” has power. Saying “No” allows you to be able to refuse extra labour and can keep you grounded, balanced, respected, and well.

Saying No when needed can improve your quality of life and leave you feeling less burnt out, resentful and tired.

Say “No,” and don’t overload! Let’s explore how to say “No” and how to achieve all the benefits of this positive action in our next conversation. See you next time!

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