Stop Saying YES to Everything!
For over 30 years I owned and operated my own dance studio business. The rewards and satisfaction from teaching were wonderful! In fact, after all these years, I am still friends with many of my former students, some of which are now bringing their children to the dance studio for classes.
But there is another side to the business and that is ALL the stuff that everyone wants you to do. Can you perform for this event, or can you choreograph 2 musicals this year plus choreograph an entire 'Requiem' for our Civic Chorus? Oh....and can you also choreograph Color Guard routines for our high school marching band? And my child needs private lessons because she is entering a competition next month! WHAT?!!
I was not only the business owner, but was the ONLY teacher besides my assistants and my daughter (who took over my business in 2004). People sometimes think that we are SUPER HUMAN and can DO IT ALL! Oh....and by the way, I had 4 little children of my own that also required some 'mommy & me' time :-)
My thinking was that people thought that I had an EASY job and all I did was go in the studio and teach for 5-6 hours a day. Little did they realize that it takes another 6 hours+ to create/choreograph for classes each day plus more hours for all the EXTRA things that people asked me to do! There is ONLY 24 hours in a day, if I am correct ;-)
Did I get compensated for all the extras? I received very little compensation, but got plenty of recognition within my community and surrounding areas.
Don't get me wrong.......recognition is wonderful! It feels good to be liked by everyone, complimented and possibly even get more students from it. But.......I did not need any more students. I was already at the maximum that I could handle 200+ students. For one person....that was plenty, don't you agree?
Here's the thing: Saying YES to everything really can create burnout, frustration, stress, and unhappiness.
As a business owner, it really was my right to decline, and I knew I would benefit far more from taking a break than working until dawn. But I wasn’t at all surprised when the instinctive replies came out of my mouth, ‘Yes, of course, thanks for asking. I'd love to help you out'. Then I would go home and ask myself why oh why did I say YES again!!
I have always been a people pleaser. I was so anxious to be liked that I would do or say almost anything to seek approval and avoid confrontation. In the past that was exactly how I always did things. I am not sure where it came from. My mother was a stay a home mom, and my father was in real estate & politics. Who knows! What I did know was that I had to change my way of thinking.
Over the years, I LEARNED to SAY NO!! Once I began saying NO, I became healthier, more self-confident and FREE to do ALL the things that I wanted to do and not tied down doing all the things everyone else WANTED ME TO DO!
Here is what I learned:
Saying NO does NOT mean that you are a BAD PERSON.
Realize that YOU are of GREAT VALUE.
Decide if it is REALLY WORTH IT.
Learning to say no has been one of the best things I have ever done for myself. Not only has it challenged me to overcome my fear of rejection, it has helped me to feel in control.
I don’t feel trapped, resentful, or guilty anymore. Instead, I feel empowered and FREE!
If you want that same feeling of freedom and empowerment, then take control, challenge yourself, and learn to SAY NO.
Enjoy this fabulous weekend everyone!!