Monday, August 29, 2016

Sometimes We Just Have To Say No.

"Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around for a while, you could miss it." --Ferris Bueller

For most of us, life is moving at a pretty fast pace these days. There's so much going on, we hardly have time to think. Technology has made it easier for us to take on more. We think it's great because we're so efficient but really are we that much more efficient? If we're taking on more, killing ourselves to do it all, leaving us so exhausted we can barely function, how is that efficient?

Then one day, we hit bottom and then we ask ourselves how this happened, how we didn't see it coming, why we didn't do a thing to stop it. Well, it didn't happen overnight, it came upon us so slowly we never even realized it. We were good at getting things done. People relied on us more and more. The better and more efficient we got, the more they relied on us. Why did we do it? Maybe out of a sense of loyalty, duty, responsibility, guilt, compassion, whatever the reason, we just kept on taking more. 

Until....

When that moment of realization hit us, the panic set in... what the hell do I do now?  We're asking ourselves how we stop the continuous loop and regain control. 

The answer my friends, is simple. We have to say no.  Oh if only it were that easy. Perhaps it is just that simple. Of course saying it is simple, it's just not so easy to put into practice. 

One word: no

Maybe just saying no politely and calmly is too subtle and it's just not enough to get anyone's attention, especially our own. Maybe what it takes is a bold statement like stopping in the middle of traffic on a Monday afternoon at 5 pm, getting out of our cars and yelling to the world, "I just can't do this anymore!" 

Now, how many of us are likely to go back to bad habits when our proclamation has been recorded by some not-so-well-meaning bystander and broadcast all over YouTube as part of the Nut-Of-The-Month Club? 


The bottom line is --we can't do it all, we just can't.  That well will run dry. Life is too short to live in exhaustion because we've got some warped sense of priorities. We have to take steps now to stop the insanity. It's not enough to just decide we're going to do it, we have to tell everyone. We can't just go around saying no and then going back to old habits. Once we say it, we have to mean it.  . 

Now that we're thinking seriously about doing it, the next step is to stop feeling guilty or irresponsible or like we 're letting everyone else down.  What about us? What about letting ourselves down? Doesn't that matter? Don't we matter? 

Yes, we do.

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