I Never Say “No”

More than often, I wonder how the heck I’m still surviving. As the years have passed, I’ve obviously changed- I’ve learned a few things, been hurt, found great friends, fallen in love with Jesus, and so on. But, something that just has not changed about me is my weird, dangerous, kind of foolish way of running non-stop. I’m always in a rush, always busy, and trying to multi-task as I overbook myself.

I love to say “Yes” to as many things as I can.

You want to get lunch today? Yes.

Meet for a group project? Yes.

Go to the beach? Yes.

Do homework by the bay? Yes.

Wake up at 7am, and go get donuts? Yes.

Rollerblade? Yes.

Go get a half-hour massage from your massage guy at 9pm (long story)? Yes.

I love saying “Yes”, and if it’s hard for you to do this- you should start practicing it. Because, it opens doors for memories, new experiences, and all the good stuff in between.

I’m not sure if my need to keep moving is FOMO (fear of missing out), FONM (fear of not moving), or FONBBABL (fear of not being busy and being lonely). But, what I’ve discovered about this habit of saying “Yes” are a three things.

  1. I am never home.
  2. I am so tired.
  3. I (for lack of better words) half-ass things.

I’m never home anymore. I do not sit down (I think I get this from my mom, we’re both really bad at being still.) Once my day starts, I’m out the door, at school, then home for lunch, back out to meet with Younglife girls, grab coffee with a friend, go to the beach, at the library, go to work, get ready for a show, or walk a dog- it could be anything. I get home at 9pm or later from whatever, I crash- and I crash hard. I’m never home to spend time with my roommates, and when I am, I just want to go to bed- and that makes me kind of crappy. I don’t like to sit still, I don’t want to do nothing, I don’t want to feel lonely.

If you haven’t learned much about being an extrovert or an introvert, I’m going to give you a quick crash-course.

Being either of the two doesn’t rely or revolve around whether you’re shy or outgoing, loud or quiet, or anything of the sort. It’s about the way you re-charge and feel filled up or energized. Whenever you’re tired, if you find that the way you get your energy back up, is getting away from noise and others, and taking time for yourself to be alone, maybe read or watch Netflix, you might be an introvert (fun fact: Jesus was an introvert). But, If the way you re-charge, is by being around your friends and people- being social, you could be an extrovert. One is NOT is better than the other.

In case you can’t figure this out, I’m an extrovert. I love being with people, I love making plans, I love it all. But every introvert needs time to be with people, and every extrovert needs time alone, and like I said: I am so tired. If I never sit still, even if I’m re-charging constantly, how do I get all of this energy out, other than being by myself?

To be honest and vulnerable, I’m entering into a season of singleness, and being alone with Jesus actively. But for some reason, I don’t let myself be alone for too long- and I am so tired. More than likely, I think I’m scared to feel lonely, so I avoid it as best I can. What I’m trying to do now is really rest in Jesus, and trust that He’ll help me combat this feeling. It’s scary, and like I’ve said, I don’t like to stop moving- because if I’m moving, loneliness can’t catch me. Then, I hear that little soft voice in the back of my head say “Tori, you can’t be lonely if you have Jesus. Because you are never alone. He will never leave you. He makes you whole.” and then I’m like “Ugh, little voice, you are so right.” But, the doubts still rise, and I have to practice this thinking over and over again. I’m tired,  I need rest, so I have to force myself to sit still.

I love being busy, I love saying “Yes”, but when I do this too much, other things and people get put on the back burner- and I don’t do my best. If I say “Yes” to lunch, to studying, to rollerblading, to grocery shopping, to grabbing coffee, and to playing a show- something is going to get sacrificed, because there just isn’t enough time in the day.  I don’t fully give myself to things that I shouldn’t. This is a really crappy thing to do. When I say “Yes” too much, I let people down and I let myself down. I neglect to do my best- whether it’s on an assignment, or having a good conversation with my friend. It’s because I’m focused on what’s next for me.

I’ll be having lunch with a friend, having great conversation, but in the back of my head I’m going through my to-do list.

“Alright, I have lunch right now- but I need to make sure I leave in 20 minutes, to get home to do this piece of homework, and then go to work. But, I also need to make sure I figure out what time I’m going to get off of work, so I can make it home at a decent time to make dinner with my roommates- I’ll probably get off at 5:30 (knowing I probably will not get off until 6:15- but maybe if I try hard enough… it’s bad) and then I can get home, shower, make dinner, and then do more homework and turn it in by midnight.”

What the heck am I doing?

I’ll tell you what I’m doing, I am running myself into the ground.

I feel like we’ve been encouraging each other to say “Yes” more, for quite some time. This is a good thing, I stand by this- agreeing to do things, go on adventures, and love yourself better is great! But, why have we made saying “No” such a bad, selfish thing?

I know I have.

I think that if I say “No” I’m not being thoughtful of others or myself. But, when I say “Yes” and don’t give my everything, I’m doing something much worse: I’m letting myself and my people down; I disappoint.

Turning something or someone down, in order to give yourself or something else quality attention, is not selfish- and it’s needed. I’m still trying to teach myself this, and I am scared of saying “No”. I never say “No”, this has hurt me more than once. It causes me to not be the best friend I can be, the best student, or daughter and sister.

So, my encouragement for this is for you to think about which answer you say more often. My hope is that you already have a great balance of how often you say “Yes” and “No”, and I hope to be more like you one day.

But, as for me, I hate to turn down an opportunity, because I don’t want to sit still. So, maybe instead of saying “No” to something or someone, I’ll just say “Yes” to Jesus when he asks me if I would PLEASE stop moving so much, and just be still. I’m better at “Yes” anyways.

But, I’m going to try and start saying “No”.

 


 

Five things I’m thankful for today:

  1. My mom’s sweet, encouraging, funny texts.
  2. Phone conversations with my brother that make me laugh a LOT
  3. Being alone, and listening to The Lord.
  4. Breezy mornings, like today
  5. Good pens. God, I love good pens.

I like writing these things down. I’m starting to do it every day- five things I’m thankful for that day (lol, it’s only day 2, but I suggest it highly)

In the words of my mama, Sweet Diane:

“Have a happy day!!!”

-T

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