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When You Know It’s Time To Let Go And Love Yourself More

When You Know It’s Time To Let Go And Love Yourself More

You’ve probably heard people say you must learn to love yourself before you can love another; but what if you stop loving yourself? What if you lost yourself in a messy relationship; or a good relationship has gone bad? Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, “To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.”

There are times in life when you must give up the things or the people (sometimes both) that you love in order to love youself. Think about it. What would you say to a diabetic who refused to stop eating sugar? You might ask them, “why have you stopped caring for yourself?” Here are Five times when you know it’s time to let go and love yourself more.

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When you have to sacrifice your happiness

First, you must understand that you are in charge of your own happiness. If you are feeling unhappy, only you can fix it. If you are feeling unloved, that is a cry out from yourself to love yourself. Likewise, it is not your job to make another person happy either. If you are sacrificing your own happiness for someone else, it isn’t healthy for either person and it could be a sign that it’s time to let go.

When you’re expected to be someone you’re not

When you’re expected to be someone you’re not, it makes you feel like who you are is not good enough and that is a dangerous road to go down my friend. Remember, you are a beautiful person. When you spend your time with others who make you feel like you are less than you are, or like you’re not good enough, it will not only strip your identity, but it will put your identity in the control of another person. That’s the last place it should be. After all, it is your identity. Thus the cycle continues and, until you make the choice to let go and love yourself, you will continue to drown in self-doubt and lost identity. Instead, try and realize that when this happens, it’s time to let go of others’ expectations and love yourself more than them.

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When you have become someone you’re not

This is a big one and it happens over a long period of time in relationships. It happens when you ignore yourself for too long and allow yourself to be influenced by another person because you feel like you are only “good enough” if they say you are. It happens when you love someone so much and you think you need to sacrifice yourself for them to the point that you stop caring about your own needs. Look, being someone you’re not is bad enough, but God forbid you to wake up one day and realize you don’t like the person you’ve become. Sometimes parents have to tell their children they cannot hang out with certain friends because they always get into trouble. This is exactly why. Different people open up different roads to different futures. If you realize you went down the wrong road and have become someone you never should have become, then it’s time to let go of the life you have and open up opportunities for a new life.

When you refuse to let go because of fear

If you know deep down that it’s time to leave something or someone behind, but you haven’t done so because you’re afraid, then trust me—you are not alone. This is one of the most common reasons people have for not letting go. I put off quitting smoking for years because I was afraid. Afraid of losing something I enjoyed, afraid that I would lose friends, afraid I couldn’t do it. There is always something to fear with any decision that you make, but ultimately you must do what’s right for you. If you are in a situation where you are being hurt, as I was when I was smoking, then you are not being loving to yourself. Anything that you do that opposes self love should be let go.

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When you have lost self-worth

If you find that you have lost self-worth then there’s a problem. When you constantly put a person before you, you basically tell yourself that you’re not worth as much as they are. This is dangerous thinking. To share a life with someone is a beautiful thing. To spend your entire life putting yourself down to serve another—even if it started by your own choice—is no way to live. It’s never too late to stop this behavior and let go of this thinking. If someone or something is demeaning you, if you feel like you deserve what’s happening to you, or if you think you don’t deserve love, that’s even more of a reason to let go of these thoughts. You deserve love, so stop refusing to allow yourself to have it.

There’s only one person in this world who can love 100% you and that’s the person that knows you 100%–YOU! It’s not easy, but with a lot of work and self care you can let go of this thinking. You will have to make sacrifices. Sometimes you must let go of things in life and people you love, even long term relationships and marriages. The bottom line is, if something or someone is depleting your identity, self worth, and making you unhappy, it is time to let go and move on to a place of love, wellbeing, self-fulfillment, and happiness.

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Last Updated on July 8, 2020

How to Say No When You Say Yes Too Often

How to Say No When You Say Yes Too Often

Do you say yes so often that you realize you aren’t really happy about this, wondering how to say no to people?

For years, I was a serial people pleaser. Known as someone who would step up, I would gladly make time especially when it came to volunteering for certain causes. I proudly carried this role all through grade school, college, even through law school. For years, I thought saying “no” meant I would disappoint a good friend or someone I respected.

But somewhere along the way, I noticed I wasn’t quite living my life. Instead, I seem to have created a schedule that was a strange combination of meeting the expectations of others, what I thought I should be doing, and some of what I actually wanted to do. The result? I had a packed schedule that left me overwhelmed and unfulfilled.

It took a long while but I learned the art of saying no. Saying ‘no’ meant I no longer catered fully to everyone else’s needs and could make more room for what I really wanted to do. Instead of cramming too much in, I chose to pursue what really mattered. I started to manage my time more around my own needs and interests. When that happened, I became a lot happier. And guess what? I hardly disappointed anyone.

The Importance of Saying No

When you learn the art of saying ‘no,’ you begin to look at the world differently. Rather than seeing all of the things you could or should be doing (and aren’t doing), you start to look at how to say yes to what’s important.

In other words, you aren’t just reacting to what life throws at you. You seek the opportunities that move you to where you want to be.

Successful people aren’t afraid to say no. Oprah Winfrey considered one of the most successful women in the world confessed that it was much later in life when she learned how to say no. Even after she had become internationally famous, she felt she had to say yes to virtually everything. It was only when she realized that after years of struggling with saying no, I finally got to this question: “What do I want?”

Being able to say no also helps you manage your time better.

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Warren Buffett views no as essential to his success. He said,

“The difference between successful people and really successful people is that really successful people say no to almost everything.”

When I made ‘no’ a part of my toolbox, I drove more of my own success focusing on fewer things and doing them well.

How We Are Pressured to Say Yes

It’s no wonder a lot of us find it hard to say ‘no.’

From an early age, we are conditioned to say ‘yes.’ We said yes probably hundreds of time in order to graduate from high school and then get into college. We said yes to find work. We said yes get a promotion. We said yes to find love and then yes again to stay in a relationship. We said yes to find and keep friends.

We say yes because it feels better to help someone. We say yes because it can seem like the right thing to do. We say yes because we think that is key to success. And we say yes because the request might come from someone who is hard to resist like the boss.

And that’s not all. The pressure to say yes doesn’t just come from others. We put a lot of pressure on ourselves. At work, we say yes because we compare ourselves to others who seem to be doing more than we are. Outside of work, we say yes because we feel guilty we aren’t doing enough to spend time with family or friends.

The message no matter where we turn is nearly always, “You really could be doing more.” The result? When people ask us for our time, we are heavily conditioned to say yes.

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How to Say No Without Feeling Guilty

Deciding to add the word ‘no’ to your toolbox is no small thing. Perhaps you already say ‘no’ but not as much as you would like. Maybe you have an instinct that if you were to learn the art of ‘no’ that you could finally create more time for things you care about. But let’s be honest, using the word ‘no’ doesn’t come easily for many people.

The 3 Rules of Thumbs for Saying No

1. You Need to Get Out of Your Comfort Zone

Let’s face it. It is hard to say no. Setting boundaries around your time especially you haven’t done it much in the past will feel awkward.

2. You Are the Air Traffic Controller of Your Time

Remember that you are the only one who understands the demands for your time. Think about it, who else knows about all of the demands on your time? No one. Only you are at the center of all of these requests. are the only one that understands what time you really have.

3. Saying ‘No’ Means Saying ‘Yes’ to Something That Matters

When we decide not to do something, it means we can say yes to something else. You have a unique opportunity to decide how you spend your precious time.

6 Ways to Start Saying No

Incorporating that little word ‘no’ into your life can be transformational. Turning some things down will mean you can open doors to what really matters. Here are some essential tips to learn the art of no:

1. Check in With Your Obligation Meter

One of the biggest challenges to saying ‘no’ is a feeling of obligation. Do you feel you have a responsibility to say yes and worry that saying no reflect poorly on you?

Ask yourself whether you truly have the duty to say yes. Check your assumptions or beliefs about whether you carry the responsibility to say yes. Turn it around and instead ask what duty you owe to yourself.

2. Resist the Fear of Missing out (FOMO)

Do you have a fear of missing out (FOMO)? FOMO can follow us around in so many ways. At work, we volunteer our time because we fear we won’t move ahead. In our personal lives, we agree to join the crowd because FOMO even while we ourselves aren’t enjoying the fun.

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Check in with yourself. Are you saying yes because of FOMO or because you really want to say yes? More often than not, running after fear doesn’t make us feel better.

3. Check Your Assumptions About What It Means to Say ‘No’

Do you dread the reaction you will get if you say no? Often, we say ‘yes’ because we worry about how others will respond or the consequences of saying no or because of the consequences. We may be afraid to disappoint others or think we will lose respect from others. We often forget how much we are disappointing ourselves along the way.

Keep in mind that saying ‘no’ can be exactly what is needed to send the right message that you have limited time. In the tips below, you will see how to communicate your no in a gentle and loving way. You might disappoint someone initially but drawing a boundary can bring you the freedom you need so that you can give freely of yourself when you truly want to.

4. When the Request Comes In, Sit on It

Sometimes, when we are in the moment, we instinctively agree. The request might make sense at first. Or we typically have said yes to this request in the past.

Give yourself a little time to reflect on whether you really have the time, or can do the task properly. You may decide the best option is to say ‘no.’ There is no harm in giving yourself the time to decide.

5. Communicate Your ‘No’ with Transparency and Kindness

When you are ready to tell someone no, communicate your decision clearly. The message can be open and honest to ensure the recipient that your reasons have to do with your limited time.

Resist the temptation not to respond or communicate all. But do not feel obligated to provide a lengthy account about why you are saying no.

A clear communication with a short explanation is all that is needed. I have found it useful to tell people that I have many demands and need to be careful with how I allocate my time. I will sometimes say I really appreciate that they came to me and for them to check in again if the opportunity arises another time.

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6. Consider How to Use a Modified ‘No’

If you are under pressure to say yes but want to say no, you may want to consider downgrading a “yes” to a “yes but…” giving you an opportunity to condition your agreement to what works best for you.

Sometimes, the condition can be to do the task but not in the time frame that was originally requested. Or perhaps you can do part of what has been asked.

Final Thoughts

Beginning right now, you can change how you respond to requests for your time. When the request comes in, take yourself off autopilot where you might normally say yes.

Use the request as a fresh request to draw a healthy boundary around your time. Pay particular attention to when you place certain demands on yourself. If you are the one placing the demand on yourself, try to evaluate the demand as if it were coming from somewhere else.

Try it now. Say no to a friend who continues to take advantage of your goodwill. Or, draw the line with a workaholic colleague and tell them you will complete the project but not by working all weekend. Or, tell someone in your family you can’t loan them money again because they never paid you back the last time. You’ll find yourself much happier.

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Featured photo credit: Chris Ainsworth via unsplash.com

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