One of the best things I can do for myself, my family and those I influence is to “Just Say No!” I know, I know…it sounds cliche…BUT when it comes to prioritizing your life and maximizing on the time and influence you have with others around you…learning to say, “No,” is crucial.
Some may argue that following this advice seems negative. It’s actually a matter of perspective. Every time you say “No” to something, you are in reality saying “Yes” to something else. Think about it…if I say “No” to a guy’s night out, I am saying “Yes” to dinner with my family. If I look at my son and say, “No” almost every time he asks me to buy him a candy bar or video game when we are at the store…I am saying “Yes” to investing that money in something he actually needs. When we say “No” to that temptation that stares us down daily or weekly, we are saying “Yes” to building character, discipline and integrity in our lives. In a world that is constantly screaming at us to say “Yes” to doing this or consuming that…I say no…and I am trying to teach my sons to do the same…BUT…they know it’s okay to say “Yes” as long as doing so is saying “No” to the right stuff. Are you confused yet?
You see, there is a “catch 22” here…every time we say “No” we actually are saying “Yes”…and if your really smart and catching on…every time you say “Yes” to something, you are actually saying “No” to something else. There is a great book out there that calls this, Choosing to Cheat. The key is choosing to say “Yes” and “No” to the right questions. It’s about taking the time and weighing the pros and cons. It’s about weighing the consequences not just for those “big issues” in our life, but the everyday small ones that come at us when we least expect it. The life lesson here is that no decision is insignificant…because it will always have an effect on more than just you.
So what about you? What are the things in your life right now that you need to say “No” to more, so you can say “Yes” to something better?