Now that we have the business stuff out of the way, let’s get to the real business of Friendship Club.
This month we’re looking at Relationship Management, particularly the kindness of no.
Yeah, the word no can be one of the nicest things you say to someone.
Many people see no as a bad word. The worst word. A nasty word. Something said too often, something that keeps us from living our best life, or something we use as an excuse keep others away from us. As so many pairs of opposites, when we think no, we also think of it’s counter-part ‘yes.’
Our culture teaches us that for every hero there is also a villain, for the dark there is a the light, a good to the bad. Since no is used to “stop” something, it’s seen as bad, and as yes is used to “start/continue” something it’s seen as good.
While I agree in many ways that saying yes to more opportunities certainly opens more doors to, I have to ask the question are they doors you want to enter? The narrative that encourages the power of ‘yes’ and at the same time vilify the power of ‘no’ is just too simple.
In reality, a no you mean is far kinder than a yes you don’t.
This is not an invitation to start saying ‘no’ to everything—but rather an encouragement to seek greater balance, and speak your truth.
So this month’s challenge; think of a time you said “no” to a friend and meant it, and what happened because of it, or perhaps a time you said “yes” to a friend and did not mean it and what happened then.
Curious about how you can say no without being hurtful?I see it as a simple 3 step process;
Identify your truth. To all things there is a balance, situations you agree or decline because they serve your longterm highest value. Instinctively you know what will serve you, and what will not, (and maybe you just need participate). If you’re uncertain sit with yourself even for just a moment, to determine your response.
Declare your truth. Be it yes/no, it’s important to be concise and direct. Be clear about what you are/are not available for, and don’t feel pressured to have to answer why/why not type questions. By being concise and direct you free yourself from any fluff-type discussions, as well as the risk of seeming mean for no reason.
Hold the boundary. If challenged, go back to step 1; Identify your Truth, if it still rings true see step 2; Declare your Truth, and then you have to hold the boundary. Your first priority should always be to take care of yourself first, so making sure your boundary is held is important. Your boundary isn’t a weapon meat to hurt the other party, but rather identify the space your relationship can occupy. If they see it differently, they may need time to change perspective.
As long as your intention is tied to the truth of your highest value, you articulate it in a concise and productive manner, and hold the boundary to remind all involved (including you) the value of your truth—there should be no harm no foul.
I look forward to hearing about your kind no’s!!!
Thank you friend! I look forward to seeing you, meeting you, and I love you—-bye!!!