It’s not always easy listening to (or differentiating between) what you need versus what you want.
It’s even harder when you add what other people expect/need from you into the mix. But prioritizing the things you need – things like rest, supportive relationships, positive self-talk or mindset, nutritious foods, hard work, exercise, and moments of quiet and reflection – is so vital to living your best life!
I’ve found that I have to make actual space in my life for the things I prioritize or else they’ll get overlooked. This means sometimes saying no to things, even good things. I know, it’s so much fun saying, Yes I’m In! to every invitation that comes my way…but we are limited. Our bodies get tired. Our spirits need times of calm and refreshment. And there are only so many hours in each day. So it turns out, sometimes RSVPing No Thank You is how we can best honor ourselves and the people we love.
I once had a plan for my family to travel off island to our good friends’ wedding. But when it came time, I found that I was just not up for more travel. As much as I wanted to celebrate our dear friends, I had to do what was best for the family, so we declined. (P.S. I heard the wedding was beautiful!)
The reality is that the most important and meaningful relationships in our life may suffer if we say yes to everything. I cherish my marriage and family above all, and often we have to say no in order to protect those relationships.
I’ve brought this No Thank You mindset into other areas of my life too. If I’m surfing a lot, I’ve stopped adding an out-of-the-water workout. No Thank You. It’s one or the other. If my energy is low, then I’m learning to listen to my body and not overdo it (more in Shaved Ice and Slowing Down). If you’re feeling overwhelmed too often then that’s a big sign you may need to slow down!
No Thank You isn’t easy, but it’s of great value! It’s counter to the professional athlete or the hustler mindset of push-push-push, stay dedicated, and work harder. But, the flip side of Yes I’m In! is that it’s way too easy to get burnt out – and I don’t want to do that with the things that I love – career or not!
If you’re feeling overwhelmed, burnt out, or struggling to identify and prioritize the things that you need in life, practice saying No Thank You. It might not come easy at first, but trust me, you’re worth it!
p.s. Slowing down in order to better focus on your priorities is the first step in my Unstoppable Year program. Join us!