Friday, December 11, 2009

The Magic Word

We are raised to use "Please" and "Thank You" in our every day lives. We are taught from the time when we can understand Big Bird that please is the magic word to get what we are wanting/needing.

As an adult, I've discovered a new magic word. NO.

It's next to impossible for some of us to learn to say this word. I know that I have had an extremely hard time re-acquainting myself with this word. As children we are all VERY familiar with it. (Who hasn't heard a precocious 3 year old loudly proclaim "NO, MOMMY!!" when in a restaurant/grocery store etc?) As you grow older, you learn to spare people's feelings, and bend your schedule to accommodate other folks.

I had myself extremely overbooked and since I am a people pleaser, it is extremely hard for me to say no to something. I am normally the person that will just make things work to help out whoever I can. Don't get me wrong I love helping folks out. I just lost sight of boundaries. I got a rude awakening this summer when I agreed to take on a project that while near and dear to my heart as a cause, I could already see into the future was going to eat up any possible free time I may have had as well as been a bad match with the cause's leader. It took me a week of going back and forth, fearing that the people I agreed to help would be disappointed in me, that they wouldn't want my help in any other capacity. Instead, when I said I had to step down, while it was met with resistance, when I stood my ground, it was AMAZING the feeling I felt afterwards.

Since then I have learned that wielding that word can prove dangerous, yet fruitful at the same time. Dangerous in the sense that if you don't phrase your answer juuuuuust right, you might truly hurt someone you didn't mean to, and the time to recover that is harder than the time it would have taken for you to think about what you were about to say. Fruitful because it sets up a boundary with some people that may need to be pushed back in your life for a season. You don't hate them, you don't not want them in your life, you just want them to respect the fact that you have to have some time (no matter how little it seems) for YOU.

How Full Is Your Tank?

Now, some would take this cliche (I can't for the life of me figure out the damn accent thing on words like that or fiance.) phrase a bunch of different ways. Is your emotional tank full? Is your spiritual tank full? Is your financial get the point.

However, since we all know that I am not a deep philosophical person...I simply mean energy wise. In otherwords: Am I the only person on earth who seems to be absolutely exhausted ALL of the time? (Yes, I've had my thyroid checked and no I don't have mono, so let's just get that out of the way now.) I don't know if it is the time of year with all the hustle and the bustle, the parties, the white elephant gifts you need to dig out of nowhere for that Secret Santa you forgot (no, I swear, it didn't happen to me.), the fact that it gets darker so much earlier in the day or what.

I am BEAT. Yes, I could go to bed earlier, but guess what, even if I'm all tucked in (TV off, laptop closed down etc) my brain refuses to shut off until at least 1130 or later. Last night, prime example. I didn't start making Pretzel Magic until 1030pm. By the time I sat down to wrap my brother, brother-in-law and sister's birthday presents for today, it WAS today. 15 minutes INTO today. I am not a morning person, not since working at the hospital (even then it was a struggle at times) have I been able to go to bed so early and then get up and work at 7am. Thankfully, I don't have to be at work until 830 now. Is it greedy that I would kill to be able to be in at 9 instead, and yet leave at 4 instead of 5? (I know...never gonna happen...) Maybe it's the lazy side of me, maybe it's the social butterfly in me...who knows. What has to give? Social interactions (the thing that I think I crave more often than ice cream)? If that is what I decide I have a hard time thinking about the fact that means telling more folks no. I REVELED in the fact that I had 2 whole nights where I didn't have to be anywhere at all other than the recliner those nights if I wanted to.

Ok, that is my little rant for the time being. I reserve the right to come back and edit as time allows/if I am up to it!