Recently, I’ve been ridiculously busy. The last few weeks have made me realise that being able to say no is so important.
I wrote in December about how I manage to juggle everything, while still having time for myself. I’m good at planning in advance and managing my time so that I get lots done and also take the time out to relax. Things were going really well and I was happy with the pace of life I was living.
However, over the last month or so, things just got too much. This is mainly because I hate to say no to people. I hate turning down work, so I’ve kept agreeing to taking more and more on. I don’t like to disappoint anyone or let anyone down.
Yesterday, I realised that I just can’t do it anymore. The last few weeks have been crazy. I’ve kept accepting every request that is sent my way. Even when I’ve known in the back of my mind that squeezing yet another workload into my already busy schedule is going to make things difficult, I couldn’t say no. When something needs doing, I feel that I need to do it and do a damn good job while I’m at it.
There are no end of things to fit into my weeks. Recently, on top of my workload, there were family members that wanted Dan and I to visit them, our car needed servicing, there were appointments to attend, not to mention working on my biggest passion, this blog.
My blog started to turn from something that brings me so much enjoyment to being a chore. When you’re so busy, trying to find the time to work on something you usually adore can turn into what feels like another burden. The question of how to fit in writing and managing social media etc with everything else became an impossible task.
Well yesterday, everything changed.
I learnt that I need to start to say no without feeling guilty. We need to start putting ourselves first, which is something I say all the time. Today, I plainly saw that over the last few weeks, I hadn’t been listening to my own advice.
The countless requests and large workloads asked of me were too much, I knew they were, yet I wasn’t brave enough to admit it and to turn jobs down. I wanted to please everyone, regardless of how it was making me feel. It couldn’t go on a day longer.
So I made the change that was needed. I put it out there that I needed to reduce my workload. When I received another long list of work being made available to me, I advised I couldn’t accept any new work.
Did I feel sad to be turning down a lot of work? Yes. Did I think of all the money I was waving goodbye to? Yes. Did I feel guilty for saying no? Yes. But knowing that it’s going to mean I’m not feeling exhausted and so stressed all the time makes it completely worth it.
Life is all about living and enjoying the moment, not rushing around every single day too busy and under pressure to be able to appreciate it. Taking on things you really don’t want to do and don’t have the time for isn’t going to make for a happy life. Being selective about what you say yes to and commit to, on the other hand, makes for a much more enjoyable lifestyle. I know that, but sometimes it can be hard to put into practice.
Sometimes, I think we need to just take a moment to take a breather and to think of how much we’ve got going on in our lives. We can then decide what parts it might be a good idea to minimise or cut out and where we can say no to things in order to slow down. Our health, wellbeing and happiness are our main priorities, after all.
Maybe now is a good time to spring clean not just our homes, but every aspect of our lives. Clearing out the life clutter to make way for a more joyous and relaxed lifestyle.