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August 06, 2012


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Love your outlook!! My old excuse for not doing a stuffy, snotty dinner with the in-laws was because I was tired, worked late, had a headache. The next excuse is "because I'd rather do anything else". Like sit on the couch and catch up on Nick Jr with my kids. You know, the important stuff. :)

I really need to remember this in my own life! There have been so many times I say yes or agree to do something simply because I felt like I should, not because I actually wanted to. Thanks for the reminder! :)

Right on damn it! :)

Grea article! Thanks!

Right on, sister! I just quit the PTA after two years of doing a job week after week after week that didn't bring me any pleasure AT ALL. I got no personal satisfaction from it, I had to deal with a pushy jerk parent regularly and my son didn't even know that I was doing it (it was all computer based) so he often asked me why I didn't volunteer for the PTA. A few people are trying to guilt me into staying in the position still, but even so I feel great to have this awful time-suck off my to do list.

I say no. Regularly. I know my limits. I take on too much, e.g., 18 thousand school volunteer projects, and I end up on the losing end of life satisfaction.

I'm reminded of a favorite quote from a college lit class. The prof was tangentially discussing Melville's story "Bartleby the Scrivener," whose standard reply to multiple requests was "I would prefer not to."

There's quite a bit of power in that simple statement!

On a related note as you're reconsidering your priorities is another line from that class by Auntie Mame, "Life's a banquet and most poor sonsabitches are starving to death."

Jeez, can you tell it was a Transcendental Lit class? ;)

I often take this approach to the extreme ( according to my husband - it makes me immature.

And maybe I am. But setting absolutely unnecessary goals for yourself.. Such as "I HAVE to visit the in-laws three times a week" and then getting annoyed because you're seeing them too often, wait - that doesn't sound so immature anymore.

Thanks for this post!

This is so true. The other day the girls were pelting me with more requests/demands/cries-for-help than usual, I mean it felt like a hazing. I started to do the thing where I explain which I'll do first and to please be patient. But I didn't.

I said no.

No one died. No one cried. And after I did it I took a deep breath. I never knew I could just say no.

I absolutely agree with you. And I especially feel strongly about this because my in-laws are the exact opposite - they are people-pleasers who only do what others want them to do, never taking into account what they would actually LIKE to do. So I'm around it, I see it, and I can't stand it and I try to live the opposite, only doing the things that I want/need/should do, screw what everyone else thinks.

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