As you start the New Year, some of you may set goals, make resolutions, ignore or consider and implement both. As a friend just suggested he wants to resolve to be nicer, kinder, more loving and a better listener; I like these resolutions. For those of you who bought memberships to the gym resolved to lose those extra pounds and tone those body parts I applaud you – stick with it!
I’m suggesting “No” resolutions: how to say “no” to parts of your life that bring on stress, frustration and self-doubt.
In The Denver Post, 1 January 2017, Rhett Power wrote a “2017 Starter Guide, Set the tone for the year with a few manageable goals.” The quick bullet list started with 30 techniques to manage stress and number 1 was “Learn to say no.” This is my focus for “No” Resolutions 2017.
In my “Getting to ‘No’ You” workshops I ask the attendees why it’s hard to say “no” to so many people in various areas of their lives. “I want to be the go-to person.” “I want to be liked.” “Guilt.” “My boss is, well, the boss.” “I feel compelled….” “I feel….”: you fill in the blank As adults we find it increasingly hard to say “no” to anyone, whether it be a personal ask, a community ask, a professional ask, or a loved one ask.
You have a choice! What choices you make – both poor and good – reflect on your future. Your self-respect also comes into play; stand up for your values, what you believe in and it shows.
Are you overwhelmed? Do you go home at night exhausted and wake up exhausted because your brain can’t turn off thinking about all the “to do’s”? When do you relax? When do you take time for your family, friends and/or yourself?
If you had a gift box and inside was your good health by itself, you’d cherish that, wouldn’t you? What if instead that box contained various other items alongside health: your iPhone, your computer, a community project, two or three work projects, volunteer obligations, family obligations, “yes” in bold letters, clutter, to-do lists, etc.? They diminish the value of “health”; lessen its significance and blurs its importance.
Make health a number one priority this year, and saying no helps.
“No” resolutions include fewer overwhelming work projects; finish one project completely and focus on that goal before you start a new project. As the saying goes, “Let me drop everything and work on your problem.” Your brain can only focus on one task at a time, even when people talk about multi-tasking. Your brain needs time to rejuvenate itself; it’s your responsibility to let that happen.
Learn to say no and stick to that resolution. When you take time for yourself and maintain your sanity and good health, you are more valuable to others in all aspects of your life.
Give that gift of health to yourself this year and Velcro it to your brain. “No,” though hard to say, will create space in your world for your good health – both mental and physical. The more you practice saying no, the easier it is. Learn to prioritize what and who are important, and then the no is also a gift.
Without your good health you can’t be the best to anyone – at home, work or community.
Here’s to your healthy and abundant 2017.