I’ve always been a “Yes” person, I’ve always found it hard, or impossible to say “No.”
This past year, when I finally decided to take a step back, reprioritize, and focus on what matters for our family, I felt like I was being inundated with multiple employment offers. While I am so grateful for these opportunities that I said “Yes” to, I also had to learn to say “No, thank you.”
I recently had to step back and say, “No, thank you,” to a job, that while I was honored to have been considered for, I realized was not the right fit. It was going to require more time than I could afford while still being able to cherish those precious moments with Mon Cœur (MC) and Chouchou.
These past couple of months, specifically, I had felt pulled in many different directions for others’ needs. While I was exploring those options, and sometimes having options pushed on me, I forgot why I had taken the year off. I felt stressed and pressured to be the person that people knew and expected.
I needed the time and space to grieve, to watch MC grow, to have family time together, and to be a positive force for Chouchou as we navigated our life. With his unique work schedule, it would be very rare to find time to spend together as a family if I continued in the traditional nine to five job I had.
I also found myself involved in situations that I realized were toxic and not helping me achieve what I was wanting for myself and our family. I felt pushed upon, and for the first time ever, I pushed back.
I have always been self-critical, and so naturally whenever I begin to be realistic about a situation, I wonder, “Am I being a pessimist? Should I be more positive and upbeat about this?” I have finally come to understand that it’s not me being unreasonable, and that when I find myself in these uncomfortable situations, I should extricate myself.
I recently read a Smarter Living article through the New York Times, titled Thinking about a job or career change? Read this. It discussed the importance of being introspective – and knowing your values so that as you are seeking a change you are keeping your core values in mind. As much time as we invest in our careers, this is a very valid (yet often overlooked) detail. It also mentions that we should routinely be in check with ourselves and not just at moments of crisis or loss (which, to be honest was the first time I realized I should check in). The article really resonated with me as I was considering whether I should pursue opportunities or not.
Understanding myself better, and what I will and won’t endure in both professional and personal situations has helped me to create boundaries and learn to say no.
Being back at home, I have plenty to focus on: MC gives me many reasons to laugh and smile daily, I have various projects I am wrapping up, and we are preparing for a big trip soon.
How do you create boundaries for your well-being?