Yes and No

Yes and No are such small words in comparison to the many other amazing words in our language; however, these little words can be very powerful. Oftentimes we are afraid to say “YES” and experience something new (that might be initially uncomfortable)…and “NO” when we need to stop putting others before ourselves.  Here are some of the reasons why it is important that you know when it is time to allow yourself to say “yes” and when it is essential that you say “no.”

Say YES to:

  1. Allow yourself to Experience something new and/or different. If you are someone who does not like change, new experiences can be scary. However, if you allow yourself to say “yes,” you’ll start to see that new experiences are actually quite fun and often much more rewarding than sticking to your regular schedule. Even when it seems tough to say “yes,” remember, you never know where it might lead you…
  1. Find unexpected opportunities. Anyone who has seen the movie Yes Man knows just how powerful yes can be when it comes to finding unexpected opportunities. If you don’t say “yes” sometimes, you’re missing out on things you don’t even know you’re missing.
  1. Overcome fear and insecurity. Part of the reason most no people say “no” is because they are scared…afraid of new people or new experiences. The more you say “yes” however, the more you’ll face those fears and insecurities head-on. You will feel stronger because of them!
  1. Meet new people (and future friends!). If you’re like me, you might be thinking, I already have friends. I don’t need any new ones! But remember: you probably would have said that same thing before you met your current best friend. So many fantastic friendships begin because of random coincidence, and you never know who will be there when you finally allow yourself to say, “yes.”
  1. Venture outside of comfort zones. Much as you might love your comfort zone (I sure love mine!), venturing outside of it can do a lot of good. Yessing keeps you mentally sharp, teaches you new life lessons, and introduces you to things you might someday consider comforts. If you struggle when it comes to pushing yourself out of your comfort zone, remember that saying “yes” is a good way to get started. Say “yes” to something that scares you. Say “yes” to an activity you automatically turn down without any good reason. Say “yes” to breaking your daily routine (even just for a day).

Say NO when:

  1. Other peoples’ priorities take precedence over yours. Why do we naturally put others before ourselves? Because from a very young age we are taught that is the right or polite thing to do. What ends up happening, however; is if we make a regular habit of saying “yes” when we need to say “no,” our own needs get pushed to the wayside and we are often forgotten.
  1. Mere acquaintances crowd out time with family and close friends. If you find yourself constantly helping others, even acquaintances that you do not even know very well, you may miss out on some important time with closer friends and family. 
  1. No time for rest and recovery results in frustration, stress, and illness. Putting other’s needs in front of your own can be exhausting. The message that you are sending to yourself is that you do not matter, and everyone else does. This is not healthy. When we are always putting others first, we never have time for ourselves. If you need to rest or recover from a stressful event, but are not able to say “no” to people when they ask for your help you are again putting other’s needs above your own. When we are unable to say “no,” we never allow ourselves to have the me time that we need to recover. Eventually we will run out of resources, and may even get sick because we never allowed ourselves to rest.
  1. Giving in might result in unsafe situations. People don’t usually ask for help in order to take advantage of the kindness of others, however it does happen. If you are the type of person who always says “yes,” you could end up in a situation that might compromise your own morals. Never allow someone to put you in a dangerous situation just because you do not feel strong enough to say “no!”
  1. Saying “yes” to everything leaves little room for the really important things. If you spread yourself too thin, you will not have any time for yourself or the things in your life that are truly important. Every time you choose to say “no” to something that isn’t important, you are opening yourself to say “yes” to something that truly is!

Working with a counselor can help you to discover your ability to embrace the “yes” and the “no” when it is necessary.  If you are always putting others above yourself, and are concerned that it is negatively affecting your life, please contact Life Enhancement Counseling Services today at 407-443-8862 to schedule an appointment with one of our Orlando mental health counselors.


LECS Counselor