Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Deciding When to Say NO

Sometimes it is really hard to say NO when you're asked to do things that you are very interested in and enjoy doing. Especially when those things are church-related.

The last week found me sorely tempted to say YES to requests from my church and from Greater PresbyLand (and, no, the Presby request wasn't from anything GA related). Because I was already feeling a bit overwhelmed by existing commitments, I prayed and thought about it first instead of impulsively agreeing, for a change, and finally declined both.

Good Friend Dorothy and I often remind each other when we think its time to get our virtual NO refreshed on our foreheads. She will be very proud of me!

So I decided to make a list of reasons I said no, even though I would have liked to say yes, for future reference:
  • Number and scope of previous commitments
  • Time of day ( already have too many evening meetings)
  • Number of trips to Houston per day added (part of the price of living in the suburbs-- I can't tolerate too many 2 trip days)
  • Complicating Sunday mornings for the family
  • Remembering that too much busy-ness is bad for the soul, even when it is at church. Maybe especially when it is at church!
When you say no when you would like to say yes, what influences your decision?


Presbyterian Gal said...

I have a 10 year old, so the "No" is easier for me.

Gannet Girl said...

I think I will print out that list and glue it by the phone and computers.

I am, thanks to Spir. Dir. No. 1's advice in the context of reflecting on his own life at 79, per my request, slowly developing a much keener sense of what my few real substantive priorities in life are, which helps a lot.

Like you, there are many things I want to participate in, but not so many that fit in with my deepest desires and hopes.

I also try to remember the 7 Habits analogy of the rocks and sand in a jar.

Anonymous said...

I try to figure out if it would energize me or drain me...

jean said...

I'm proud of you.
1. I pray about it.
2. Unless I hear a definite "Yes" from God, I say no.

I learned to say no about age 40, so I've had a lot of practice across the years.

Dorothy said...

I am very proud of you. Now I need to get my 'NO' tattoo renewed!