My name is Tiffany and I am a recovering Yes Man.
Have you seen that movie? With Jim Carey? He plays Carl who has always opted out of life, so he makes YES his automatic response to anything that comes his way and finally joins in on what life has to offer. While this looks exciting in the movies, my experience tells me that saying ‘yes’ all the time sucks. Big time.
A wee while ago I took a good look inside and got really honest with myself. I realized that my automatic response of ‘ yes ‘ came from two places. #1 I suffered from serious FOMO ( Fear Of Missing Out) and #2 I was constantly trying to please other people.
Saying ‘yes’ all the time often left me emotionally, mentally and physically drained. It also sucked for the other person because they thought I had the time and energy available to make what they wanted happen, and I did not.
I had to baby-step my way into ‘no’ and started by giving myself permission to make ‘no’ my first response when people made requests on my time. Statements like ” Let me check my diary and get back to you on that, or, let me think about it and get back to you” now help me get out of the heat of the moment, and give me time to really evaluate whether or not I do have the resources and time to take on a new task.
What I have also learned is that when you have very clear and specific goals it makes it very easy to say “no” to the things that are not going to move you towards those goals. Sometimes saying “no’ IS saying yes- to something else. Something greater.
Given all that I have learned you can imagine how annoyed I was this week when I slipped back into my old habits and agreed to take on a task that I #1 didn’t have time for and #2 didn’t actually want to do. I immediately regretted it and instead of gracefully backing out I left it too long to find a replacement and had to follow through. This led to me becoming resentful, which does not serve me or anyone else.
In the end I only have myself to blame. Time for me to pack my bags and grab a first class ticket back onto the NO train baby!