Minimalism, Self Growth

11 Things I Intentionally Say No To

As someone who has been a chronic people pleaser / yes person for the majority of her life, I went into this new year with a different perspective. Saying no more often has been such a powerful tool in gaining back freedom & growth in my life. This mentality has encouraged me to choose what I do, listen to, & even say more wisely. Here are 11 Things I Intentionally Say No To…

Being Bothered If People Don’t Like Me…

When there are 7 billion people on this planet, chances are you won’t vibe with all of them. Once I learned to let go the heartache that came from someone not liking me or not wanting to be my friend, the more at peace I felt with myself. I turned the statement more inward & discovered there were people I didn’t particularly like either. And that’s ok. It’s actually really freeing when you stop expecting every single person you cross paths with to like you. You ultimately learn to love yourself more & find the people who are meant to be apart of your lives.

Believing Everyone’s Life is Perfect

I have a love / hate relationship with social media for this very reason. I was tired of comparing my life to other people’s highlight reels. They are just that – highlights. Or even purposefully curated photos to hide the normalcies & downfalls of life. Nobody’s life is perfect. We all experience ups & downs. Photos are still moments in time. We have no idea [ unless the person tells us] if they had a breakdown before the selfie was taken. We don’t know if that person received bad news in the middle of an event. Or the event wasn’t as wonderful as the photos showcase.

Responding Immediately

This is a habit I’m really trying to break. I’m so used to replying to my phone so quickly regardless how busy I am. I used to think it was a talent to multitask to that level. But this only allows people to think you are always available to their beck & call. On purpose, I’ve been retraining myself to reply to texts or phone calls a day later or even a week later if I’m THAT busy. I’d rather be intentional with my time & reply to something when I’m fully ready. In the world of technology, this has been rather difficult. I don’t respond to emails or notifications [ I actually have notifications turned off of my phone completely]. I let phone calls sometimes go to voicemail & get back to them later. I have even let people in my life know they don’t need to reply right away / respond when you have time. Let them know, they can also be intentional with their responses. By practicing this new way of responding has helped me gain control of my busy life.

Being Authentic With My Feelings & Conversations

It’s so easy to say to someone you are doing fine when they ask how you are. But I’m tired of not being authentic with how I’m feeling & telling it like it is. If I’m having an off day, I say it – unapologetically. I don’t care if me being true to myself makes others feel uncomfortable. I think if you are more real with people in this way, you actually create better relationships because there’s no hint of fakeness. Not only this, but you are becoming more comfortable in your own skin in the process. Being vulnerable, sharing in depth conversations instead of staying on the surface, is where those authentic relationships lie.

Impulse Purchasing

I’ve been wanting to be more intentional with my purchases. Instant gratification only satisfies you in the moment. Most of the time, when I instantly buy something, I end up wasting money & donating said item a few months later. I’ve recently been purchasing quite a few items for our wedding & new outfits for certain events. And on one hand, I’ve allowed myself to replace my old decluttered items in my closet with updated ones that showcase the person I am now. But I also want to get ahold of retail therapy. The things I bring into our home need to hold a purpose in some way. If I do see something I like, I delay the purchase as long as possible. If I still want the item, I will know I truly want / need it.

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People Who Drain My Energy

I’ve learned it’s healthy to have a balance of alone time & community but with the right people. If you are surrounding yourself with people who ultimately drain you of your energy, it’s not beneficial. I’d rather spend my time alone in these cases. But over the last couple of years, I’ve really curated a group of people who truly add to my life & it has made a difference in my individual growth.

Having Too Long of a To-Do List

When you expect yourself to complete a to-do list that is pages long, I personally immediately lose interest in it all together. Instead, my to-do list on my phone usually holds a max of 3 tasks per day. Whatever I want to complete in that direct moment, I will have on my list. It’s not to say I don’t have other tasks I wish to complete later, but only seeing 3 tasks visually is more motivating.

Hectic Mornings

I’ve been adamantly establishing slow living into my routines. Regardless of my busy schedule, I have learned slower mornings, routines with fewer products or steps really make a difference in my mood. On the weekends, when I’m not busy with work or other obligations, I take those mornings to sleep in a little later, make a warm beverage or smoothie & sit in my chair in silence or reading a book. This has also has taught me the importance of “me time” & prioritizing relaxation into my routine regularly.

Having High Expectations

I struggle with being heard & taken seriously in situations. With that, I tend to lean on the side of controlling a times. When things aren’t going the way I planned or people are just not listening, I get frustrated. Lately, I’ve learned to have lower expectations on people & situations. It’s not that I’m giving up exactly. But I’ve found when my expectations are high & they aren’t met, I’m only hurting myself. I’m learning to go with the flow & let things play out. The only person & reactions I can control are my own.

A Perfectly Clean Home

Instead of calling our home messy, I like to use the term “lived in” because we are doing just that – living! So many minimalistic homes are seen perfectly clean & organized. And the reality is your home won’t be like that 24/7. I will say, when you properly declutter you will ultimately have less to clean up. But don’t get yourself down if you have toys all over the living room or clothing all over your closet floor. We are imperfect humans just trying to live our lives.

People Adding Unnecessary Problems To My Plate

Setting boundaries & saying no go hand in hand. My life is busy enough & when other people throw obligations into the ring sometimes, it just adds to my stress. Going back to the first point in not caring if people like me, saying no to their requests or “favors” is a lot easier. It’s not to say I won’t ever help someone out or agree with a suggestion at some point. But I’ve learned sometimes, it’s not mentally help to add anything else on my plate. As you know, I like to keep things relatively simple.

58 thoughts on “11 Things I Intentionally Say No To”

  1. This is a great article. I have actually set a time when I will check and reply to all mails. Also, I love to read all blogs in detail and it was taking a lot of time. So, I have scheduled a time to read blogs. Slowing down is definitely a struggle and sometimes when family and friends visit my place suddenly, everything seems a bit off place. But scheduling posts in advance definitely helps.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. There is so much truth to all of these points. The first point resonated with me a lot… it bothers me when ppl don’t like me. It’s easier to forget about them when I don’t have to see or deal with them. But when I still see them offline or online and can’t get away from them, it’s hard for me to move on. I find this happens on FB, on WP, and in the workplace a lot. I try to avoid said places but there’s only so much avoidance I can do. Not everyone will like us, and learning to deal with them is another animal.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I love this B! I’m also saying no to extremely high expectations and allowing people to drain my energy. It’s made my life so much better.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. These are all such great tips for slowing down and living in the moment. I have just started beginning to slow down my early morning routine. I’m retired and I don’t need to jump out of bed and run around to begin my day anymore! Thanks for the encouragement and wise words.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I love this list! My two favourites are hectic morning and responding immediately. I am lucky enough to be retired and I cherish my mornings now. I refuse to make appointments before eleven o’clock. This is my writing time and I love slow mornings with quiet music. It is always a good idea to make decisions carefully and saying, “Let me think on this and get back to you,” is a great way to give yourself that time.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I loved this list because it really shows the importance of being intentional with your own time and energy. I think in today’s society it’s always so fast-paced and you’re expected to be “on” all the time, that can really take a toll. It’s exhausting. I especially loved the section about replying to texts/calls/emails right away. I’m SO bad for that. At my old job my boss would text me in the middle of the night to do things, and my people-pleasing self felt obligated to answer right away every time. That was a huge wake-up call for me. Great post as always!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. this is such a good point! i’ve also been there in terms of answering emails from my boss or them calling me last minute on my days off to come in. most times i would say yes, but there were quite a few times where i could have used that mental health day of rest.


  7. This is such a great list! I’m the absolute worst when it comes to responding straight away – it always breaks my concentration – but I think being more intentional with my replies will really help with this. I really need to cut back on impulse buying too (particularly with books), it’s becoming a bit of an issue at this point. Thanks for sharing, this was a really interesting read x

    Liked by 1 person

  8. This is such an impactful post! I can relate to just about every single one that you listed here. I like the Responding Immediately, thats a good one that most people may not think about but thats a huge things for me too.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. This article has really helped me to self reflect and realize that you have to also prioritize yourself. Thanks for the insightful post.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. These are all excellent points and reminders! I am still trying to overcome some of the obstacles you mentioned, like not being bothered if people don’t like me and having high expectations.

    I feel bad when I don’t respond to something on my phone immediately, especially when life becomes hectic. I need to remind myself that it is okay if I don’t respond instantly.

    Thank you for sharing this blog post! I really needed a reminder about some of the points you mentioned. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Awesome list! I see several of these are behaviors that I do that stress me out- like falling into the comparison trap, trying to keep the house perfect etc. I would like to work more on saying no to them as well! This post has inspired me!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Great tips.

    I ditched toxic people a while ago! But still struggle with some of these, like not replying immediately. I also put too much pressure on myself.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. This was such a great read! I used to feel bad for not answering straight away and about people’s opinions and if they liked me or not. But shedding all these things has been so liberating x

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Well, I don’t think a day would be good for the other person haha. But I feel you because I had this problem, And now I fixed it and reply a few minutes to hours late. Ir depends if it’s urgent or not.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. I really love this, B! I started saying yes to my needs and wishes instead of thinking about what others around me would think if I did something. This is our journey and we don’t need to explain our decisions to anyone. I’m now learning to stop being a people pleaser and start showing more compassion towards myself. I’m also not replying immediately to anyone, either, and it feels very liberating!
    Thank you so much for sharing. x Penny /

    Liked by 1 person

  16. This is a great post, thanks for sharing. As a chronic people pleaser I resonate with most of these points. I have good intentions but I find it difficult to put them in practise at times- especially if I’m around certain people who are quite intimidating! I will often slip back into people pleaser mode then feel annoyed with myself afterwards! Affirmations seem to help, but I must remember to do this before meeting with the person (in laws) so it helps to keep my guard up.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thanks for reading! i can sympathize with the people pleasing. it’s something i continue to work on today. ah, yes – i will have to try affirmations. i’ve always learned with in laws & all people for that matter – a simple no is a sentence & the more we explain ourselves, the worse the people pleasing can be.


  17. I love reading this post. I agree that it’s not possible to please everyone. I’ve also learned to set boundaries, say no, and yes… stay away from people who drain my energy.

    Liked by 2 people

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