For far too long, I have been part of the ‘want to please’ crowd, always jumping in to help, listen, and do whatever I could for others. My days were a blur of commitments—work, family obligations, volunteering, and endless hours spent listening to and solving others' problems. It wasn't until I faced my exhaustion head-on that I realized my lack of self-care, boundaries, and a deep-seated need to please others.

Self-care is so Necessary for Everybody
It’s funny how we grow up; “no” is one of the first words we learn, but as adults, saying it becomes surprisingly hard. This difficulty often comes from a deep-seated fear of letting people down or not being liked. Many of us turn into adults with an absolute fear or inability to say no.

Are You a People Pleaser?
If you’re unsure whether this applies to you, ask yourself a few questions:
  • Are you so busy you can’t enjoy your hobbies?
  • Do you feel guilty when you’re just relaxing?
  • Do you do things out of obligation rather than desire?
  • If you’re nodding along, it’s time to admit you might have a problem with saying no.

The Problem with Saying Yes Too Much
  • Saying yes too much can leave you feeling drained and unhappy. If your schedule is packed with 
  • things you didn’t really want to do, you’ll miss out on what truly matters to you.
  • Why do we find ourselves saying yes when we shouldn’t? Sometimes it’s because we like feeling 
  • needed or we worry no one else will step up. Or maybe it’s just because we want to be liked or fear missing out.

Rethinking Your Reasons for Saying Yes
Many of us say yes for reasons that, on reflection, aren’t good enough. Being flattered, wanting to be liked, fearing disappointment—these aren’t reasons to overextend ourselves.
Remember, if you don’t make your goals and desires a priority, you’ll end up living according to someone else's plans. Define what’s important to you and stick to commitments that align with your values.

The Real Reason We Can’t Say No
Deep down, people-pleasing is about seeking approval and acceptance. This need can lead us to put others’ wants above our own, but it’s not a healthy way to live.

How to Shift Your Mindset
Maybe we should stop being so nice and just be kind?
It’s time to stop equating being nice with being a doormat. You can be kind and considerate without sacrificing your own needs. Saying no doesn’t mean you’re a bad person; it means you’re putting your own well-being first.

Tips for Saying No
  • Take Your Time: Don’t feel pressured to answer on the spot.
  • Be Direct: You don’t need to offer a lengthy explanation.
  • Avoid Apologies: Saying no doesn’t require an apology.
Making the Choice
You have the power to change your life’s direction. Will you continue letting others’ needs dictate your time, or will you start living for yourself? Journaling, meditation, and other self-reflection practices can help you understand your motives and make it easier to embrace saying no.
Through personal experience, I’ve learned that prioritizing self-care and setting boundaries not only reduced my exhaustion but enriched my life immensely. While some relationships may change or even end as a result, the freedom and satisfaction gained are immeasurable.
I’m curious about your journey. Have you faced similar challenges? What strategies have worked for you in saying no and prioritizing your well-being? Share your thoughts below.



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