Saturday, September 4, 2021

I Said No and I Don't Feel Guilty!

This may not seem like a big deal to some, and I hope that's the case for most, but I was pleasantly surprised at just how easily "no" came to me recently!

A former colleague and casual acquaintance reached out to let me know about her new business venture. It's not my thing, and I wished her well, but told her I was going to pass when she offered me a "friends" package. 

I realized as I was sending that "no, thank you" that there have been many times in the past where I've felt that since someone was kind enough to think of me that I had to reciprocate by participating. This time, that thought felt foreign. In a previous life, I would've fretted about the timing and place, but felt obligated to be there. I do hope she finds success and I'm glad that she's excited about this, but I can express those feelings in a simple text instead. 

I have made some stupid, awful mistakes for the sake of "being nice." Mistakes that were meant to avoid hurting others, but inevitably led to others, as well as myself, being hurt. Turns out that being dishonest is never nice, no matter one's intention. 

It's no secret that women are conditioned to sacrifice themselves for others, and it's not always wrong to do so, but I think I've now internalized that I can say no without worry of how others will view me. 

I was tempted to say that it's because I have more self-confidence, but really, I think I've realized that people are going to think what they think, and usually, they're not thinking about me as often as I used to think they were! I'm sure my friend that invited me has just moved on and is more concerned with finding people that are interested than whether or not I am. 

Certainly, there have been plenty of times when people have said no to me, and it's been for a variety of reasons. If I noticed that people never showed, I took note of that, but ultimately, I didn't let that one note define our entire relationship. I trust (now) that's how most people will weigh my own "no." 

I told my friend, no thank you and wished her well, and she responded with appreciation. Turns out, the thought really does count! 

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