This took me a long time to learn. I guess I’m still learning it. I think we’ve all been taught you can’t just say “no” with no explanation. It’s rude. It’s blunt. Why? You can’t say it without a reason. Parents drum it into children. “Why?” “Because.” “Because why?”. Teachers demand explanations. Bosses want answers. All this is fine, and in some places and instances, you do need to supply an answer. But sometimes you don’t.
If you don’t feel comfortable, if you don’t think it’s in your best interests, if you think you’re gonna get hurt, you can say no. You don’t have to tell you friends or your partner why if you don’t want to. You shouldn’t feel like every time you use that word you need to justify it with an answer. What happens if the answer isn’t good enough? Then you feel obliged to do whatever it is you don’t want to, or make more excuses.
You shouldn’t feel forced to do anything. If people want to think you’re rude or a flake or a scaredy-cat, then let them. No is a powerful word. A very powerful word. If you start to throw in reasons and excuses, it loses it’s power. It allows people to twist it, change it, weaken it. You don’t want to go home with that guy? No. You don’t want to drink tonight when you’re out? No. You don’t want to take that dead end job? No. You don’t want to let someone treat you poorly? No.
It’s tough. It really is. I didn’t drink when all my teenage friends did. Every time I turned down a drink, they wanted to know why. They wanted to change my mind. At first I gave excuses, but after years of coping it from people – including people saying “I’ll just slip some alcohol into your coke!” – it was easier to give no explanation at all. Why is it anyone’s business but mine? Why do I feel the need to justify my answer to anyone who’ll listen?
It’s time to break the habit. It’s time to stop letting other people’s questions and opinions overrule your judgement. It’s okay to use the “N Word”. It’s okay to stand by it.
No. No no no.
This, and many more prompts, can be found here.