Guest Author - Vannie Ryanes
The new year is just around the corner, it is time to make a change or changes for making your life better. Although I no longer make resolutions, I have told everyone that I do make promises to myself. This coming year my one promise would be to say "no" more often. This is not easy for me, it took years to learn to say “No.” If you are like me, you too have learned it can be difficult to say “No, I can't do this or that.” Or, you may have found that saying no does not always work because your answer leaves questions or gives permissions. It goes something like this, you have been asked to join a be an officer, committee member, etc. You should say no because you are already busy with a number of committees that take much of your time. However, you want to help. And that's the rub, the thing that makes you waiver toward “Okey-dokey, I will do it but remember, I am not available 24/7 for this.” Take time to think about what the commitment will mean, then, give yourself permission to say no, that's what I plan to do. It is up to you (and me) to learn from experiences that caused so much stress and grief.
Talk to your children about saying no. Often a child wants to belong, she wants to have what others have, or may feel pressured to do something that she knows her mom or dad would approve. How about the old, "If little Susie/Charlie jumped off the roof, would you jump off too?" This is not a question that can be easily answered or with a simple yes or no, it depends on badly you want to fit in, or how high the roof is. Learning to say no can be a life saver.
Resolve or promise yourself that you will celebrate something every day. My daily celebration comes from my early morning peek out of the window each day. Celebrations do not need champagne, a cup of tea or soft drink will do. How about the promise of taking time to read a book? It is a perfect way to celebrate your personal space, claim this quiet time.
Also, make a promise that you will laugh more. A good friend has taught me to always try to see the funny side of life. A daily dose of humor is good for you.