by Janne Robinson for Elephant Journal
We need boundaries like we need air.
We need to say no in order to continue walking in our integrity.
We must fire people, hold them accountable and have hard conversations in business, love, family and friendships.
When we say no in order to set boundaries and be in service to our integrity, we say yes to ourselves.
If we are going to have successful friendships, relationships and businesses we need to say no.
Saying no sucks. Period.
I have a friend whose web guy just took six weeks, after agreeing to a one week timeline, to update her website. She gave him three warnings—passionately, empathetically and gracefully. He dropped the ball, and it affected her business. She finally couldn’t wait anymore, as she has timely articles and content to share, so she wrote the company she found him through that works with artists and told them what was going on.
She felt guilty.
“What if he gets fired?”
The business-minded non-empath in me said, “He broke an agreement. It’s on him. He’s accountable for not doing the work discussed and you paid him for.”
I recently had a follower who makes beautiful art, just gorgeous poems, write me a 10th message asking for dinner or coffee with a passive aggressive comment about me not replying to previous messages.
I wrote back saying, “You’re an incredible artist. I love your work. Never stop creating. I’m not interested in having dinner or romantically knowing you, or anyone I meet online. And as far as not replying, I’m currently moving and was just in the hospital for a week and a half with an immediate family member.”
He wrote back angrily saying my message was impersonal and he wanted nothing to do with me.
You know how that felt? Shitty.
You know how having an ongoing conversation with someone I didn’t want to know personally or have dinner with would have felt? Fucking exhausting and unnecessary.
Saying no and setting boundaries is hard, uncomfortable and sucks sometimes.
It’s also part of life, being authentic and transparent.
We can walk out of alignment when we act solely to accommodate the needs of others.
People-pleasing and the desire to say yes constantly is a disservice to our integrity.
Hate em’ all you want, but you’ve gotta have ’em.