Let Go of Fear & Guilt… and Say “No”
Do you have a difficult time saying “no” to family and friends? By saying “yes” to everyone, you are recklessly giving away all your valuable energy. It could be that you are motivated by a genuine desire to help, but it could also be that you are acting out of response to a series of fears or from a deep-seeded but defective belief system that causes endless guilt.
Let me share a personal example: I have trouble saying no to my husband. A couple of years ago he went to Arizona and left me at home, recovering from a detached retina. When he asked if it was okay for him to go, I didn’t say no and my yes wasn’t authentic. What did I fear in responding that way?
The list is long (and irrational, but that is how fear works right?). I was afraid that if I said no to my husband, he would be disappointed and unhappy; he wouldn’t want to spend time with me; he would withhold affection; and I would lose his love. After feeling resentful for the entire time he was gone, I now realize that in saying no to him, I would have said yes to myself. He didn’t abandon me; it was me who abandoned me!
The irony is that in trying to avoid negative feelings between us, I created them. By the time he came home I was resentful and looked for ways to punish him. Understandably, he was confused. Saying yes due to “fear of consequence” is a downward cycle. Although he enjoyed being in Arizona, I was so difficult when he got home that he was indeed disappointed and unhappy, concluded I was acting childish and then withheld affection. Much that I feared would happen if I said no happened anyway in spite of my saying yes.
Somewhere along the line I established a belief system that a good daughter, spouse or friend is always there for others and always says yes. Believing that it was my job to make him happy, I sacrificed my needs for his. This is typical of women. Naturally imbued with Feminine Energy, we are so concerned with others we’ll say “yes” when we mean “no” and put their happiness ahead of ours. Obviously, it is counterproductive.
The ability to say “no” comes from your Masculine Energy. This independent, self-sufficient energy is present in both genders, but due to nature or nurture women may have to work harder to activate it. As Arianna Huffington says, “no is a complete sentence.” I have learned that if I want to preserve my energy bank account and live authentically, I must say “no” when I mean “no.” It may disappoint others in the short-term, but over the long-term, it builds courage and eliminates guilt. And I am healthier for it!
Watch for Betty-Ann’s upcoming book, Gender Physics: Unlock the Energy You Never Knew You Had to Get the Results You Want. Betty-Ann draws on her many years of experience as a senior vice-president at PotashCorp to show how she used both Masculine and Feminine Energy for maximum impacts. She shares her revolutionary Gender Physics system with readers to help them leverage their strengths in the business world. To learn more about Gender Physics and Betty-Ann, visit her website bettyannheggie.com.
By Guest Contributor Betty-Ann Heggie