Learning to Say No: Survival Mode 7-day Challenge (Day 1)

I am blogging this week about Crystal Paine’s book, Say Goodbye to Survival Mode, and her 7-Day Challenge related to the book.

Say Goodbye to Survival Mode

The theme for the first day of the challenge is titled “Learn to Say No” and discusses how you have to say “no” to some things so that you can move toward your goals.  Whether it’s saying no to PTA or MOPS duties or deep-cleaning your house, you have to do only what is right for you and your family, and not for other people.

The moment I stopped feeling obligated to other people, I finally felt like I was living. Really living. I could breathe. I could laugh. I could love.

Wow, that sentence really hit home for me.  Right now I am reading Unglued by Lysa TerKeurst, and did some thinking just last night about how, when I feel like I am being watched and judged by others, I am not the same mom as when I am focused only on my kids and their needs.  I need to do for my children what Picasso and Cassatt need, and not what other people think they need to see from a mother.  I am not responsible to them, and it really does not matter what they think.

In the same way, I need to do what is needed for me, my family, and our goals.  Other people needing me to be involved, to participate — need someone who can follow through.  If I am over-committed, I am not the person they really need.

The challenge for today was to make a to-do list for your day, then cross off 3 things from that list — say no to them.  Making the list wasn’t hard.  I had 3 different to-do lists on my phone, so I compiled them onto a single sheet of paper.  Man, that’s a long list.  Then cross off 3 things?  After some deliberation, I decided on things that can wait: organizing MOPS paperwork, vacuuming the stairs, and decluttering (which I try to do every day).  I wasn’t happy about crossing these things out, but I knew something had to go.  Right now, I’m going to bed in 2 hours and still have 10 things on my list!

Are you doing the challenge?  What can you cross off your to-do list today?

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About Sarah

Stay at home writer and mom of two young boys, Picasso (5) and Cassatt (3). Former lawyer and avid advocate for children's education. Passionate knitter and friend.
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