Learning How To Say No

“I think the saddest people always try their hardest to make people happy because they know what it is like to feel absolutely worthless and they don’t want anybody else to feel like that”

Robin Williams

Whether you suffer from mental illness or not we each have to set boundaries for ourselves so that we don’t become overworked and exhausted. Some people struggle to say no and I know in the past I would let people walk all over me just because I didn’t want to upset them. Even when I was mentally and physically drained I would do what I could to keep people happy as I was sacred they would leave me.

Which is stupid for 2 reasons. If they were really your friends they would understand how you have your things to figure out and can’t be there for them 100% of the time. And if they did leave you then you deserve better friends.

Because I suffer from depression and I have days where I don’t even leave my bed when someone close to me tells me they are struggling I want to do everything in my power to make them feel better again. Even when I am at my lowest I always want to make those around me happy. But there are some days where it just isn’t possible and you have to learn to not feel guilty about it.

I have definitely learnt to be blunt and more honest in recent years and whilst I have lost people because they think I am a “rude bitch” it has been easier when it comes to setting boundaries.

As well as those who suffer from mental illness I think freelancers and those who work from home struggle with this concept. People assume your job doesn’t require much time or energy so you are free to do whatever whenever, which obviously isn’t the case. Just because we work from home doesn’t mean our job is any easier than yours. I may not be spending time travelling but I still have deadlines and clients that I need to catch up on.

There is no need to make up excuses just simply go “No I have other things going on right now and I can’t help you”. Keep it simple and don’t over-apologise. You’re not asking for permission from them you are just telling them that right now isn’t the time.

Also, don’t waste time with phrases like “I’ll let you know” or “I’ll think about it”. If you know you are going to say no, just say it from day one. It will work out better for first you and the other person in the long run.

Try your best not to feel guilty. I know it is easier said than done but adult life is difficult and you don’t have time to always be there for absolutely everyone. I’m sure there have been times when this certain person has said no to you. Don’t worry I’m sure they understand. And if not, like I said before, you need better friends. 

Gracie Victoria Hemphill x

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