Say “No” to the Right Things

Certain seasons of life can feel overwhelming.

Family, work, and extra activities can pile up quickly.

These areas of life may blend together at some moments while at other times they may feel as though they are pulling you in all different directions.

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I have heard parents of teens explain how they feel they are always on the go between their job, their friends, and their children’s after school programs. They want to be able to keep up and on top of each and every individual item but that’s not possible.

When we try to do it all, especially when we try alone, something tends to fall by the wayside.

There was a time when we lived in southeast Missouri, our lawn would regularly grow longer than it should have. We were always running around doing activities we hardly had time to manage the lawn.

Garages and basements may become disorganized, a bill can be forgotten, home repairs left unattended.

It may be even more personal. We might neglect our personal health, not making time to excercise or only eating microwaved meals.

There may be periods of time where we let friendships slide. I have seen posts on social media where people have apologized for being a terrible friend but promising they still love the distant friend.

The problem many of us face is we feel we must always be on the go. We get ourselves involved in so many “good” causes or activities but when we only pile on and never take away, we weigh ourselves down to the point of breaking.

We must decide at some point though we are going to have to say “no” to something.

In order to say no to the right things we have to sit down and decide what it is we will take off our plate. If we are not deliberate in our decision all the wrong things will get neglected (family, personal health, etc).

After we decide what it is we must decline we cannot allow ourselves to feel guilty about it. If we are too busy to excercise like we have in the past but have decided that is what we will put on the backburner we must then be okay with it and allow it to pass.

Tis is not to say we will never revisit that item again.

It is not deciding I will never again run ten miles I’m just going to be okay with not doing it right now.

It is not coming to the conclusion I will never again hang out with friends every Friday night, but right now it is not feasible.

No matter what we decide to cut out of our lives for the purpose of focusing on what we consider more important, it will hurt.

But it will be worth it.

It frees up more time in the schedule

It frees up more space in our minds.

And it allows us to release the guilt of simply not being able to do it all.

We can’t, you guys. We just cannot do it all.

There  are a lot of great causes out there which can grab our attention but we just cannot attend to them all.

Take  a step back and evaluate what takes up your time. List them out in order of importance. Think about what you are trying to accomplish in your life right now.

Is it growing your family? A business? A new skill?

Focus on what it is that’s important and say yes to the things in life which help with that and say no to the distractions.

It won’t be easy. Distractions are fun. But it will be worth it.