I don’t know about you, but it’s hard for me to say no … even during times it would serve me well.
But no constricts my throat, squeezes tight, and doesn’t let go. So, instead of feeling uncomfortable and listening to my intuition, I’ve said yes when no was the best – most honest – answer. I said:
Yes to the easy university, the safer choice.
Yes to men who didn’t have genuine interest in me.
Yes to moving continents when I knew the change would risk my marriage.
Yes to letting men return in hopes that promises would be kept this time.
These are ways I’ve compromised myself. Sold out.
Each yes whittled at my integrity and discipline to set clear, firm boundaries. I’d bend – if not break – my truth to fit nicely into the palm of someone else’s life, their needs, their desires. I gave away my sovereignty and power to reign over my life with surety and clarity.
Why did I say yes when I knew deep inside I should say no? Why was it difficult to trust myself?
It’s not that I was unsure about what I wanted and needed; the problem was I didn’t believe I was worthy of my desires. Deep inside, I worried that what I most wanted was a wistful dream, something unattainable. (I still struggle with this belief at times.)
See, if I said yes, maybe I’d get a sliver, a semblance of what I wanted. That was enough. I accepted, heartily and gratefully, the crumbs tossed in my direction instead of insisting on the whole damn loaf that I was craving and denying myself.
I was starving and didn’t even know it.
I feared that “no” meant never, a lost chance, or maybe goodbye. A missed opportunity. So say yes. Say yes to everything with arms open wide to whatever may come. Say yes to the smiles, the empty apologies, the coffees, the lies. Say yes to keeping expectations low to avoid disappointment. Say yes to leaking my power and believing I’m unworthy.
There’s been a shift, though. I’ve realized – finally – something important.
No is actually another way of saying yes.
Let me say that again.
No means yes.
When I say no to dead-ends cloaked as opportunities, I say yes to real, substantial possibilities.
When I give a firm, strong, badass, gutsy NO! to the flimsy, fake version of what I truly want … when I draw the line in the sand that says “you can’t cross this!” I’m saying a big, fat YES to me. I’m making a declaration that I absolutely deserve my desires.
No becomes yes to honoring my truth, trusting myself, and creating my story.
…It’s not the no squeezing my throat that hurts.
Swallowing back my truth is what hurts.
This is a new time. A new age of reclaiming what’s mine and harnessing the faith that what I deeply want is possible.
Anything less is no longer permitted.
So, beautiful you … what will you say no to? What will you say yes to? I’d love to hear in the comments below.