The Fine Line Between “Yes” and “No”
Conflicting Wellness Advice
Do you ever feel like you have to be some sort of an information ninja? With all the conflicting information out there on every topic, it has become an important skill to discern what is truthful or clickbait. It doesn’t matter whether the topic is health, politics, or fashion, there will always be articles to support opposing viewpoints.
On the topic of how to live your best life, there are many people who tell you to say “yes!” to any and all new experiences. There are others who will tell you that saying “yes” to everything is to not have boundaries, and that it’s important to say “no” to lots of things in order to sharpen your life to the things that mean most to you. While I lean a little more to the latter view, I believe what’s most important is knowing which things to say “yes” or “no” to. There are a couple of instances that I see in my own life where I think there could be a lot of improvement.
Why Being A Yes Person Doesn’t Work. Just Say “No.”
One example of too much yes, is something that I struggle with: in recent years, we’ve termed this FOMO, or Fear Of Missing Out. I love attending vegan events, whether it’s food vendors, speakers, or a big party planned by a friend for their YouTube channel, I’ve immersed myself in the big vegan community in Los Angeles, and don’t want to miss out on any of the fun, learning, or food. After working a 40-hour week, it’s non uncommon for me to have a weekend packed to the gills; so much so that I feel like I need another weekend after my weekend!
Recently, I found my perfect compromise: there were three vegan events I wanted to attend, and I chose to go to one all day Saturday, and catch the tail end of one on Sunday. While I love these events, I also like having a restorative weekend, and being able to catch up on errands. Having too many fun things is a pretty good problem to have. But it’s also necessary to skip out on some events, for the sake of my sanity. Finding the balance that works for you is key.
Why Being A No Person Doesn’t Work. Just Say “Yes!”
There is one instance of a “no” that I see all the time, which should absolutely be turned into a “yes.” Often times, I see friends of mine want to attend an event, but they turn it down because they can’t find a friend to go with them. Maybe this is more of a thing for women than men; women like to go places together (even the ladies room), and it’s even a little safer. But most of all, I think people find it uncomfortable to go places alone. I am a strong proponent of going to places alone, if you can’t find a friend to go with you.
One perfect example – Several years ago, I was invited to an event that was shrouded in secrecy, and had rumblings of being potentially fabulous. I invited every single one of my friends, and each one turned down the invitation. If they had previous plans with a friend, I said, “bring your friend!” Most people simply didn’t want to put in the effort to come out, and I said, “I really think this is a can’t-miss event.” Despite my protests, I ended up going alone, and had a great time – it ended up being a surprise birthday party for Snoop Dogg, and an unforgettable night! Needless to say, I had many friends feeling regret. Now, when I hear of friends who want to turn down going somewhere simply because they can’t find a friend to join in, I encourage them with this story.
Making Up Your Own Dang Mind
When trying to discern whether you should say “yes” or “no” to something, it’s most important to check in with yourself and see how you feel. What do you want to do, honestly? Visualize your options, and see what feels most expansive to you. Some other questions to consider: Am I saying no because this is something outside of my comfort zone? Or because of fear? In that case, it might do you some good to say yes, to broaden your horizons. Do you say yes too often because you are a people pleaser, or because you don’t have established boundaries with your time? Or do you say yes to everything, knowing that you’ll be exhausted afterward? In that case, it would do you some good to say no to some things. It’s important to know which direction you lean, to be able to reign yourself in on what is not working for you.
It’s a bit too simplified to either tell someone they should be a “yes person” or “say no more”, since each has its own pros and cons. When we figure out how to trim out the unnecessary things in our life, while also trying out the fun and unique every once in a while, in a way that feels good to us, then we are living our best life.
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Jessica Steinberg is a health coach and motivational speaker who is passionate about helping people thrive through a plant-based diet, optimal wellness practices, and a lifestyle glittered with a limitless amount of fun and enjoyment.