Say "No" to someone. Then...say "Yes" to someone else. For the right reason. Hint: cause you want to
I suck at both of the above.
I feel guilty if I say "No."
Or I say "No" because I'm afraid to say "Yes."
Getting older helped a little bit. Having less time to spend on regret, or just on things I don't want to do, the "Nos" are less painful. But I still find myself out when I want to be in or caught up in the complications of situations I never asked to be part of more than I'd like.
I'm an introvert, but my "mask" fools people. I like that they like me, but the only child in me prefers her own company. Or a good book, a beloved film--ONE friend, at a time. Intense talks over coffee and whatever we choose, perhaps.
I do not schmooze. I do not enjoy soirees...group things. Especially regularly scheduled ones that I "have" to attend.
After years of regimented days as a school administrator, and, before that, deadlines at newspapers that had to be met...I love nothing more than deciding, on the fly, to do something fun. Something new.
But, paradoxically, I also feel the need to be rousted out of my comfort zone sometimes. To talk to someone I usually wouldn't, especially. Such pleasant surprises I've had when I did.
A good friend once decided to say "Yes" to almost everything for a full year--I don't know how he did it. But I watched his life blossom in ways none of us could ever have imagined that year.
Which turned out to be both the best and the last of his life. Passed away suddenly, very suddenly, toward the end of it. As if the Universe had wanted him to finally fulfill his every dream before he left us.
What an amazing gift...
It is almost as if turning our lives upside down, doing the thing we don't want to do sometimes and then doing ONLY the things we want to do at other times--dancing between the two, making ourselves a little uncomfy and then as comfy as we can be--may be a lovely way to make our lives more interesting.
Let's test that theory. Baby steps.
Say "No" when you really mean it. Today. At least once.
Then, "Yes," even when you're not quite sure you want to. Even if your stomach clenches a little bit. See where you wind up. And come back and talk about it here.
I'm still waiting for some intrepid soul to take me up on that invitation. Will it be you?