Sometimes what we learn as children doesn’t serve us well in adulthood. There are many things that do but I don’t think any of us were sufficiently encouraged to say no. Our parents wanted our obedience, for obvious reason, but while we were kept safe, we overlooked the power and importance of saying no.

This is not for me. No thank you. Move along.

We are far too polite and that is a problem.

We are often very concerned about hurting peoples feelings. We are caution not to disappoint them, and so we say yes to things we should and then we either have to disappoint them, or end up pretending until we find ourselves that we don’t want to pretend anymore.


Not for me.

Those are powerful and uplifting words.

We don’t say no to enough things. We don’t break enough of our bad habits and we don’t say no to things we know will end up as a waste of time.

Friends will ask you to come over and you really don’t want to. You have a crap pile of things to do, but you don’t want to be rude so you come over. You sit there making mild conversation. You have a few drinks. You kill a few hours and you return home. You didn’t go because you wanted to. You didn’t give your friend the best of you. You just showed up. Killed time and left.

It’s ok to say that its not for you.

You can’t be afraid of what people might think or say. You shouldn’t be afraid that they will judge you and walk away. Over population may be a crisis in the world, but finding people to know and get along with has never been easier.

Not for me.

If this is not for you, than something else might be, and the key to all this is not to settle. There is no reason to settle. Your life is meant to be full of wonderful people and meaningful experiences. If it is not you have to do something about it. Start saying no. Don’t stay late after work. Don’t clean the house so often. Don’t plant so much stuff in your garden that you have to spend most of your weekend weeding your garden.

Most importantly, be picky and find something for you.

Something great. Something meaningful.

The more times you say no to something, the more you discover that not getting upset with people who are unreasonable will lead you to saying yes.

No and yes are really the same. They are part of the same beautiful coin.

When you get married or decide to enter into a relationship, that yes you utter, is a simultaneous no to everyone else. The time you spend reading, is time you don’t spend writing, or talking, or working. Everything we do takes us towards and away from something.

We were given two keys in life. Yes and no. We are pretty good at driving with our yes, but we need to hold firm and discover the freedom of saying no.

The freedom of learning that this is not for me.


Cover photo generously provided by photographer Gemma Evans via