It’s Okay to Say No

I am the queen of collecting time management books. Each one I read gives at least one “Ah ha!” tip that helps my life run smoother. These wonderful books have touched all areas of my life as a wife, mother, and homemaker. I can now clean my house better, faster, and greener. I use a spreadsheet to map out my “perfect week.” Although I have yet to experience a perfect week, I have a goal to shoot for!

The one common thread to all of these books is the word “No.” Yes, it’s “No.” You just cannot say yes to everything that comes along in your life. For example, your kiddo wants a kitten. Ask, “Is this the best time to bring a pet into our family?” Think through: is this season of your family’s life open to adding another family member? Will the responsibilities be upon your shoulders or someone else’s? As much as we want to be Supermom, we don’t want to be Supertired Mom or Supergrumpy Mom.

That question was intentionally pointed at a child’s request. But what about your life, Mama? Are there activities you want to participate in that are just not the best for this season of your life? It’s okay to say, “No.” Most activities and leadership positions will be there years down the road. Personally, I had a hard time saying no to a weekly prayer group. I love to pray with my community! As I contemplated the amount of time it would take, I decided that it would be a better fit post-homeschooling. That was a fifteen-year wait, but so worth it!

When people approach you with an offer to serve, and they know you are the perfect person to do it, it is hard to say, “No, but thank you for thinking of me.” Some things I have learned over the years:

  • Talk with your husband. See what he thinks because his perspective might be 180 degrees different than yours!
  • Pray for the Lord to provide the right person. And if that person is you, pray that He will confirm that to you and your husband.
  • Evaluate your season of life. Do you have littles that need a consistent stay-at-home schedule? Are you homeschooling and need to be at home? Does your husband travel and you need spontaneous breaks to celebrate his return?
  • Would this activity be good, better, or best for you? For your children? For your marriage? For your family life?

It really is okay to say, “No.” When we overbook our already busy lives, we remove the margin that our hearts and families need. Margin is that white space we all need in our lives ~ husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, and children. I got the next idea from a Contact Mom. 😊 If you are feeling stressed just reading this, ask your husband what he thinks should go in your schedule. It might surprise you as to what he thinks what will add or subtract from your family’s happiness! Get ready to say some “No’s” so you can enjoy this season of your life and live life well!

 

Glen and Jerrine Hicks have been married 32 years and live near Sedalia, CO.  They have two adult daughters and one son-in-love.  Jerrine’s idea of a perfect day would include a pot of PG Tips tea, some dark chocolate, a Jane Austen movie, and time reading Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Jerry Bridges, Emilie Barnes or L.M. Montgomery.  She loves couchtime with her Glen.  She is an introvert.  😉  The Hickses have been involved with Growing Families since 1996.
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