Learning to say “no”

Hello everyone:

One of the hardest things for a people-pleaser to do is to say “no” when someone makes a request. If you are serious about your future, sometimes you have to turn down a request to do something.

When starting college or a new job or caring for elderly family members, this is something you need to be able to say pretty quickly, or you will miss deadlines or wear yourself out. I used to be very active in my church, but taking on home schooling and a double major in college made it so I could no longer be at church every time the doors opened. ┬áThe amazing thing is that they replaced me pretty quickly. Ladies’ banquets still got planned and thrown, missionaries still got treated to a home cooked meal when they arrived, and children still got babysat in the nursery. And this happened all without my showing up to open up and set up and staying to lock up the church at the end of the event. What an eye-opener!

While I did enjoy continuing my involvement with the adult choir and Passion Plays, everything else could wait until I finished college. It took 14 years for me to complete my education, but the church is still running. The good thing about saying “no” is that you give someone else the opportunity to serve. You can still support the ministries through prayer; you can still support any causes you believe in through donations or encouragement. The bottom line is: You don’t have to do it all yourself! I have found that, if the cause is worthwhile, 100% of the time someone else steps up and does the job you felt you absolutely had to do.

What have you learned about saying “no?” How did you get over your feelings of being the only one who could do or run something? I would love to hear your thoughts!


Dr. Sheri

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