How Do You Say No
& Remain A Happy Family!
I am often asked by mothers and grand mothers how do you say no and still have a good relationship with your adult children?
The word no as diminutive and simple as it is, can be one of the most difficult words for people to utter. Although it is often attached to a negative response, it can have positive effects on those who conjure the power to use it.
Saying no is not being obstinate or disagreeable, but is often where we take control of our boundaries and capabilities. This little word can actually be the basis on which relationships find balance and maintain a healthy stability.
Free as a bird or..
For many, especially those who are retired, family members may perceive your schedules that have become untethered from having to punch a clock as being free and clear.
Retired or not, grandparents may find that the simple joy of spending time with their grandchildren is strained by those who go beyond fair requests of childcare or assistance. An inability to to say no to unrelenting requests for childcare and other favors from adult children needs to be addressed before it causes other problems.
The stress and guilt that is associated with saying yes when we mean no can create long-term problems and even health concerns. The internal conflict can manifest into physical symptoms such as headaches, muscle tension, digestive issues or simply become toxic over time. If you are already suffering read my take on how to relieve stress which may provide you with a place to begin changing some things in your life.
We must first realize that the word no is only an answer to a question and has no correlation to what type of person you are, how much you love your family members, or your capabilities. By over-agreeing to things that we may not want to do, we can find ourselves stressed even more so than if we offered up the no answer to begin with.
But how do you say no?
Learning to say no and to reclaim control of your personal boundaries can begin when you say..
“I really would like a little time to think about that,
and then I will get back to you.”
This immediately allows you time to fully grasp the request and your desire or capability to carry it out. Remember that you do not have to say no any more than you have to say yes and the choice is ultimately yours!
The best way to start is to practice on those who offer less pressure and intimidation. You will notice the response, even if it is disappointment, does not have any long term ripples in the relationship. You will also be able to reflect when others may tell you no to your requests as well. It is simply a common word in our interactive vocabulary.
The answer to the question.. How do you say no
is to give the answer that you want to give. My tip.. If you are taking the easy way out because of feelings of confusion take a quick look at
one minute meditation and see if you can use it to find calm again before making decisions. If you are retired, you have earned the right and do not need to always come to the rescue of others just because you have less designated appointments on your calendar. Being able to speak your own personal truthful answers is empowering and you will rid your life of excess turmoil and resentments. Since resentments simmer under the surface, many a relationship can deteriorate without resolution. Sometimes it causes people to drift apart without ever really knowing why.
So.. how do you say no? The word is short, sweet, and simple–no It is not as much negative as just an answer. Sometimes we need to say it to keep our sanity. And for the times you have to say it and you are worried about the reaction, remember the words of..
Dr. Seuss–”Those who mind–don’t matter,
and those who matter–don’t mind!”