Last week we learned that “yes” is one of the two most powerful words in existence. It opens you up to live life to its fullest, conquer fears, and engage others in meaningful relationships that can change the course of their future.
Take a minute now and think of what the other “most powerful word” may be. If you guessed “No”, then you’d be correct. Doesn’t seem right, does it? “No” is such a negative word. It’s a word that we don’t like to say. It’s so final, so foreboding; like you’re gonna be missing out on something. It can make you seem cold and calloused. It’s often so much easier to say “yes” than “no”.
The fact of the matter is, however, that the word “no” is just as important as the word “yes”. “Yes” gives you a vision of the possibilities for your life. “No” brings focus to that vision so that you can actually accomplish it.
I’m a fairly gifted person. I could just as easily excel in music, writing, visual media, or any other artform that I truly wanted to. I don’t say this to brag, because giftedness doesn’t mean that you have achieved anything. My problem has always been the word “no”. I have so many areas of interest that I have never narrowed it down to just one thing. Because of that, my skills are passable in many areas, but I’m not excellent in any of them.
The problem is that we are just human and we have a limited amount of each of the following resources:
If we say “yes” to everything, we do not make a sufficient investment in anything. The word “no” helps us define our priorities and invest our life in the things that truly matter to us.
Here are a few symptoms of someone who doesn’t use the word “no” enough:
- You don’t have a craft that you are known for
- Your work life is eating into your family time
- You haven’t had a good devotional time in the past 3 days
- You go to bed past 12 on a regular basis
- Other people’s problems become your problem to deal with
- You spend most of the day scrambling to accomplish a “to do” list instead of the bigger picture
- You haven’t worked out in a week
- You haven’t spent quality time with a good friend in 2 weeks
- You haven’t been on a date with your spouse in a week.
I know that some of that applies to me, how bout you? So what do we do about it? We’ll talk about that in the next post. In the meantime, if you haven’t checked out the last few posts on saying “yes”, why don’t you take some time and do that in the next couple of days? In doing so, I hope it’ll help you reimagine the life that you truly want to live.