Is not something you say to a people-pleaser. The thought of “just saying no” tends to work against every grain of their reinforced and automatic response of saying yes. That being said, when we always say yes, we put ourselves in a position of not being important; we have negated our own needs and the flexibility required in order to honour what works for us.
Ultimately, in order to move to a healthier position, we need to give ourselves permission to reflect on whether or not it works within our schedule and energy level to say yes. An example would be “I will have to get back to you about this; I have to check on a few things.” This will give you the space to decide whether or not it works for you. If it does, great! But if you feel that you are sacrificing at your own expense by saying yes, you can move to “I’m sorry, but I can’t say yes this time.” Saying no gently is a good alternative because you are tempering the no; it doesn’t feel so rigid and final. Saying no may not feel natural or comfortable at first but that is okay; you will have begun the process of reinforcing a healthier position for yourself in the long run.
Photo credit: http://Photo by Kai Pilger on Unsplash