Learn to Say No: Do you find it hard to say no to people? If so, you are not alone. Some of us hate to disappoint, upset or lose favour with others. If saying no doesn’t come naturally to you, don’t worry, you can learn.
Why is saying no difficult?
– We fear letting others’ down.
– We worry they might get angry with us.
– We put their needs ahead of ours.
– Because we want to be seen as obliging and helpful.
All of the above are some of the reasons some people just can’t say no. But never saying no can leave you feeling exhausted and shows a lack of self-care. It can be even harder to break the cycle as others’ learn that we will always say yes, and expect this from us. When we decide to change, we also need to re-educate those people about our new stance.
Why it’s good to say no to things that don’t support us:
– It is a sign of strength and self-worth.
– It is helpful to others who have a tendency to take all the time, to know that you are no longer supporting that. Supporting ‘taking’ behaviours enables it.
– It preserves our energy and supports balance and wellbeing.
– It means we have more time to do important things.
– If you are not sure how to answer a person when you want to say no, it’s okay to say: ‘I’m not sure, I’ll check this out and let you know soon.’ This gives you time to prepare your response.
– If someone was to go on and pressurise for an immediate answer, I would refuse, simply because asking for more time is a reasonable request and they have been disrespectful by not allowing that. Unless it’s a life or death situation of urgency, of course.
– Keep it short and simple: ‘Sorry but I’m not available.’ Don’t give endless reasons why – unless you think it’s any of their business. If you keep justifying why you are saying no, you show that you are totally uncomfortable with it and are open to persuasion.
– Be polite. Look them in the eye. Just because you are saying no, doesn’t imply that you are mean, don’t like the person, or don’t respect them.
In Energy EFT, we can check in with how we feel about saying no to people. Rate yourself on the SUE scale below. If it’s hard to say no, it’s in the minuses, with -10 being the worst. At zero, you feel indifferent about it. In the pluses, you feel pretty good about your ability to say no when it’s appropriate.
As we raise energy flow through the energy body it also helps us to feel more empowered. Being a doormat or people pleaser is indicative of living in the minuses, with energy blocks. Give yourseslf the gift today of saying no when something is asked of you that doesn’t feel right.
‘When I loved myself enough… I came to know my own goodness.’
– Kim McMillen.
Sometimes we can be our own worst critic, and are the ones harshest on us of all if we make a mistake, omit to do something that we ought to have. Would we say the same to someone else as what we say to ourselves?
If you give yourself a hard time about things, start to reflect on how useful this is. Who is it serving? Is it helping you to do better? Quite probably not. When we make a mistake, if we use it as an opportunity for growth and learning, we can improve. By asking the question, ‘how can I do better the next time?’ we support ourselves to do better.
The mind on auto-loop: Some people give themselves a hard time over and over about something. This can be agonizing and eats away at their self-worth. Again, they wouldn’t dream of doing this to a good friend, but to themselves they keep on and on, wagging the finger.
One strategy to overcome this is to have a ready rehearsed response that you teach yourself to say each time that judging, unforgiving thought pops in.
Judging thought: You are no good as a _____ because you ______
Pre-rehearsed response: You are learning ways of being a great _____ all the time, and each day you are getting better and better
The mind can run on auto-pilot, so if you were to do this a little thought and preparation needs to go into it. The more you respond with the rehearsed response, the more the mind takes it into the subconscious. It becomes your new, more helpful belief.
List any things you recognise you find hard to forgive about yourself and be open to spotting them over the next few days to catch any you didn’t remember today.
Write these down and then underneath each one write down a more helpful statement, such as the one above called the ‘pre-rehearsed response.’
Practice saying these out loud and in your mind, and keep the page in a safe place so you can refer back to it. The more you practise this the better it works. You are re-training your brain, and persistence pays.
Guilt and Shame:
Guilt is where we regret something, whereas shame is quite deep-running and is more about what we think of ourselves as a person. Shame can be a very destructive emotion, and those who suffer from it might be best to work with somebody, such as a counsellor or Energy EFT Master Practitioner.
In Energy EFT there are a number of approaches to overcoming unforgiveness. You can tap on a positive such as ‘forgiveness,’ or ‘compassion’ to invite these qualities for yourself. Another technique is to talk about the thing you feel bad about whilst tapping around the points. Remember though to de-stress first, otherwise, you can end up taping on stress talk and not experience improvement.
The video below is a brief demonstration of using Energy EFT to overcome unforgiveness to self.
When our mood is low, from an energy point of view, there are energy blockages. I love Silvia Hartmann’s diagram, below, that shows an energy block before and after tapping. The stressed one (left) is relevant to low mood, somebody feeling frightened, jealous, angry, bereaved and so on. We tap to improve energy flow and thus remove the blockage.
So, what can you do about raising your mood with Energy EFT? I recommend:
Rate yourself now on the energy or SUE scale (see above)
Start by de-stressing first if you are in the minuses, by tapping on a word such as ‘peace,’ ‘calm’ or ‘relax.’
Now think of a word that is positive and uplifting to you. It might be joy, happiness, bliss, confident, romantic love, lottery-winning-ticket, and so on. Any set-up that would give you a boost of positivity.
Tap a round on that and keep tapping. You can use the same setup or a new one. After each round check in with the Energy Scale again and rate how you are doing.*
The idea is to keep improving energy flow, which usually naturally correlates with our mood. The better the energy flow, the brighter your mood. Energy EFT gives us a fast and free way to improve energy flow. You can really have fun with this too. Using Positive EFT, you can tap for any number of fun and uplifting things.
Move whilst tapping. Don’t be afraid to tap while you dance along to an uplifting song.
If you comfort eat when your mood is subdued, tap before you start eating. This may help you to eat more mindfully, and if you eat too much, it may help you to opt for a healthier portion size.
Tap a gratitude tapping round on all the things you can think of that you feel grateful for. They don’t have to be big things, even that you have shoes on your feet is fine.
Do something kind for someone else (or for yourself!!). Think random acts of kindness. Doing something kind for someone else helps take the focus out, which can be helpful when in a low mood state, which can tend to be inward looking.
Plant flowers/bulbs. Get your hands dirty. Feel the earth in your hands. This is very grounding, and satisfying too. At time of writing in Ireland it is Autumn, perfect for planting daffodil/snowdrop/crocus/tulip bulbs etc., which will brighten up another day early next year. Win win!
Smell something nice: incense, aromatherapy oils or whatever you can and that you like. Stimulating your sense of smell with a lovely aroma can give you a lift.
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