What happens when you say "no" as a kid?
Punishment? Retaliation? Love withdrawal?
Usually society conditions you to be tamed and docile rather than being a wild free thinker.
For many people, saying "no" to a parent could mean emotional or physical threat.
You could get abused just because of refusing to comply.
So, it is easy to carry this pattern when you grow up.
You might tend to say "yes", when in fact it's "no" you want to say.
You do that because you want to be agreable, you want to be loved, accepted and safe.
See it from the other side as well:
What is your emotional response when someone says "no" to you?
Check it out!
Do you get defensive? Aggressive? Or do you fully respect that person's choice without emotional charge?
Respect of each other's freedom is something to practice both ways.
The challenge when you do the opposite of what you want is that you end up making choices or being in situations that don't serve you.
You end up drained or lost.
Some of these forced decisions might lead you to drastic steps like getting married, taking a job you hate or commiting yourself to something that limits you.
When you say no, when you would rather say yes, you disconnect from your truth, you let go of what feels right to you and allow someone else's agenda to be more important than yours.
In other terms you lose power in the process.
Usually the more you step out of your truth, the more people disrespect you.
These dynamics are very subtle and I encourage you to have a deep look at them, see if you can master your ability to stay in your truth.
It's interesting to notice as well that some people might give you systematic "no's" just to prove their independence.
You can go too far with that too and shut down to opportunities or connections just because of being too guarded.
This whole topic is called "boundaries".
Having healthy boundaries in the fields of love, sex, friendships, family, profession, life choices, etc, is one of your core life skills.
It comes down to mastering the art of being able to say both "yes" or "no".
It is as well the art of accepting both a "yes" or a "no" from those around you.
Want to practice or explore?
- Think of a recent situation where you said yes and feel that no would have been more true to you.
- What could you have said instead? How would you phrase it exactly?
- What would be the consequences if you stick to your truth?