Don’t buy into the hype. Self-care isn’t simply about warm bubble baths and face masks. When you’re establishing a real self-care routine, take a moment to look inside yourself and determine what makes you feel happy, comfortable, and supported.
All too often, we walk through life without paying proper attention to our needs. You might find that you’re under pressure at work, have a hectic social life, or that you need to juggle many commitments. However, you should never be too busy to look after yourself.
Believe it or not, one of the best self-care tips you will ever get is to say ‘no’ now and then. Setting strong personal boundaries (and adhering to them!) is essential to your happiness. Within this guide, we will take a look at just that and provide tips on how to get it right.
The Importance of Setting Personal Boundaries
Are you a people pleaser? While there’s nothing wrong with helping others and supporting their needs, doing so all of the time can harm your well-being. If you are continuously putting others’ needs before your own, that could quickly lead to a burn-out. For example, you may find yourself saying ‘yes’ to certain things simply because you feel you have to.
From helping someone with a work project to social plans you don’t have the time or energy for, there are plenty of ways we over-stretch ourselves. Get into the habit of doing these things too often and you will start to feel out of sorts. So, what’s the answer?
Two words: Personal boundaries. By learning to say ‘no’ when you need or want to, you can start to set boundaries. The truth of the matter is that you don’t have to do many of the things that you feel obliged to do. Whenever you’re feeling stressed or like your energy levels are low, take the initiative to say ‘no’ to that extra thing you don’t need to do.
3 Quick and Simple Tips on How to Say ‘No’
Needless to say, understanding that you should say ‘no’ and actually doing it are often two different things. That’s how we get ourselves into commitments that we don’t want. You might worry about how people will react when you refuse an invitation or say that you can’t help them with something. Here are three tips to help you get started:
1. Don’t over-explain yourself
You have the right to say ‘no’. Whether you don’t want to meet your friend for coffee or can’t do overtime at work, it’s perfectly fine to say so. When you’re doing that, avoid over-explaining yourself or coming up with excuses. You don’t need to. Keep your language simple and say something like “I can’t join you today but thanks for asking”.
2. Avoid apologizing
You haven’t done anything wrong. When someone asks you a favor or a question, there’s always a chance that you will say ‘no’. Apologizing for doing so suggests that you should be saying ‘yes’. That is simply not the case. Keep things polite, but don’t say sorry.
3. Don’t let it be personal
Not wanting to meet a friend tonight doesn’t mean that you don’t like them. Not having the mental energy to work overtime doesn’t mean that you hate your job. Often, when we worry about saying ‘no’, it’s because we think that it has these deeper implications. It doesn’t have to. Avoid overthinking the situation and keep things light.
Enhance Your Self-Care and Set Boundaries
When you start to set boundaries and learn the power of ‘no’, it will be a real revelation. The more you practice this form of self-care, the easier it will feel. It’s all about having the confidence to know what works for you and to say it aloud. Take the time to consider what matters to you and don’t be afraid to stand firm in your beliefs. Give it a go today!