A to Z Challenge 2015 · An Encouraging Word · Charles H. Spurgeon

N is for No

Celebrating the A to Z Blogging Challenge with quotations on the writing life.

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Learn to say no. It will be of more use to you than to be able to read Latin.

Charles H. Spurgeon

By nature and by upbringing, I am a people-pleaser. I genuinely enjoy helping. I like saying Yes.

“Sure, I’ll help in the kitchen.”
“Yes, I can fill in to teach the three-year-olds today.”
“I’d be happy to make copies of that music. Right now? Okay.”

Unfortunately, when it comes to gauging time, I am too much the optimist. I keep trying to pack 30 hours into a 24-hour day.

“You’re doing the A to Z Challenge? Hey, I’ll do it too.”
“Camp NaNoWriMo is in April? I think I can write 10,000 words.”
“I bet I can write three chapters this weekend and finish my book.”

Basically I take on too much, right? And then I flounder. So one of the lessons of my adult life has been learning to say No.

Sometimes I say No to people in order to carve out time (and energy) for writing. Other times I say No to writing in order to make time for people.

Photo: Pedro Ribeiro Simoes (Creative Commons Flickr). Image is link.

11 thoughts on “N is for No

  1. This is a good one. It’s very difficult to say no, but I’ve finally learned. I no longer do anything that I don’t really want to do. I no longer say yes so people will think well of me. I no longer give away time doing what I love for what will merely please someone else. All of the things I was doing were good, but some of them had to go if I was truly going to accomplish anything.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I know how hard it is to find people to do things, especially at church and at school, so I tend to volunteer to take pressure off the person who is stuck organizing. It’s an empathy thing, and it shouldn’t be.

    I am learning to say no unless I have a compelling (positive) reason to say yes. Amazing how when I step back, someone else comes forward and fills the need.

    Like

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