Imagine with me for a minute what it would be like to tell your children (or your spouse, boss, or co-workers) "yes" in response to all of their questions today. And beyond the "yes" words, actually allowing the answer to be yes and permission to be fully given for what they requested. The first time I was presented with this thought, my kids were young. I didn't even have teenagers yet and I thought, "No way!" I could think of all the reasons I need to tell them "no" and I could think of all the reasons it would complicate my life to say "yes." The idea of saying "yes" has surfaced in my thinking and I want to process it with you today.
The answer "no" is easy and it is often a habit. I often answer "no" without any thought as to why and sometimes without hearing the full request. Beyond it just being a habit, why do I say "no" so often? If I am honest, here are some of the possible reasons:
When I say "no" I am maintaining control over my kids. I retain control of their schedule, who they talk to, what they eat, what time they go to bed, what time they get up, what books they read, what movies they watch, what activities they participate in, etc. We are the parents, right? We should have control over all these things.
RESPECT and AUTHORITY
I want my kids to know that I am the authority in their life. I want them to be obedient. I want them to respect me. The way to gain that respect is by being the decision maker in their lives. Their job is to respond correctly.
No is definitely more convenient than yes most of the time. Saying "yes" often requires more effort, time, mess, clean-up, and less time for me to get work done (or stay comfortably on the couch).
Consider these questions:
How many times each day do you say "no?" Is "no" your first and most natural response? Recall the last few times you answered "no." Why did you (or do you) answer "no?"
What good things would come from saying "yes" to others? Good things for them? Good things for you?
Side note: There is a time and place for the word no - absolutely! But, perhaps our "no" would be more firm and powerful if we answered "Yes!" more often.
Will you try it out? Say "yes" today and notice the changes - notice what good things are created within yourself and others - and then post your findings on my Facebook page. I can't wait to hear what happens and learn from your experience.
(I’m Traci, the "Be Extraordinary!" blogger. I share insights that challenge and encourage moms to be the best version of themselves. To me, that’s an extraordinary life! Click HERE to receive blog updates and a free newsletter.)