This past year, I had the opportunity to live in an intentional community of women. It was powerful. It was hard. It was awesome. I learned the importance of selfless living and service, while recognizing the power that my “yes” and “no” possessed.
If you know me, you know that I love getting involved, making connections and exploring what’s around me. Usually, it’s awesome & a lot of fun! Sometimes, it can be challenging because I learn all too quickly what it means to over-commit and to lack presence in my daily living.
I often feel bad or guilty for saying “no” to someone or something, regardless of convenience (or lack thereof). I don’t like disappointing people. I don’t think anyone does! I needed to dig deeper.
Oftentimes, we don’t like to admit our insecurities and our fears. Our pride clouds our vision and our determination can hinder us from making the decision that is right.
I don’t like disappointing people because I don’t want others to think less of me. If I can’t commit or can’t do something, I wonder:
- Do I lack adventure?
- Am I boring?
- Am I a mean person?
- Maybe I’ll never be asked to _______ again?
- Am I incapable?
It turns out, that thinking we might disappoint someone or a group of people is a load of hooey. If someone is going to be disappointed that I can’t make an event because I’m sick, it’s time to take a step back and look at what matters.
This gets me back to the power of “yes” and “no” and living intentionally. I have learned through successes & failures that if I over-commit, I’m not present. I’m thinking about the next thing that I need to accomplish, checking my emails and jotting down notes of what I can’t forget to do in the next x amount of hours. Sounds like fun, right??
In Matthew 5:37, it states: “Let your yes mean ‘yes’ and your no mean ‘no’.”
By being intentional with our time, we can be intentional with and present in our relationships, our commitments and our adventures. Instead of wavering in maybe-land – make a decision! Not only for others, but for yourself! Commit and stick to it. If you’re overwhelmed, recognize it and don’t add one more thing to your plate. It’s not worth it.
I have learned that saying “no” is just as important as saying “yes”. Intentionality and carefully (& oftentimes, prayerfully!) making decisions creates greater peace and far less anxiety.
You’re not disappointing anyone by your commitment and your intentionality. Don’t be that “maybe” on the Facebook invite. Make your decision, be humble & lead with intention. Allow for greater peace in your life – it’s a good thing!