Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Learning to say no

I have never thought of myself as the kind of person who has a hard time saying no. I would always hear people say "I just don't know when to say no" and I thought that was the most absurd thing I had ever heard. Fast forward to today. I have got to learn how to say no. I just have to. I am so overwhelmed with obligations to other people that I find myself totally exhausted.

I think the problem is that I say yes, when I should say no and then I care way too much about the things I have said yes too. I agree to be on a committee, only to realize that I am the only one on the committee who is willing to actually do the work. I find myself losing sleep and worrying about something that I have volunteered to do, something that really has no bearing or effect on my life, something that is not life or death and doesn't even matter that much.

When you own a business, it seems that everyone wants something from you. I don't know if people think it means you have all kind of free time and money to give, but that is how they act. At least once a week, we are approached to do something or be a part of something. That is great, really, it is. Its nice that people think of us, but if you cannot say is a problem.

I think I finally reached my breaking point a while back. Lately, I have actually told people "I'm not able to help out right now, I am spread too thin. I believe you have a worthy cause and wish you lots of success". Translation - "No".

About a year ago, Trevor told me that I was not allowed to volunteer for anything else. He commented that everytime I went to a meeting, group or organization, I came back with a job...a job that didn't pay.

In some way, I enjoy all the things I have volunteered for, its just too much. I am going 7 days a week right now and I need a break. I have one last major obligation - that will be over by the end of June. After that, I will be an expert at saying NO. I have learned my lesson and will put that knowledge to good use. Enough is enough.

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