Monday, November 20, 2006

Uh, What Part Of "No"...

I came to the conclusion, one fine day that someone else's decisions for my life do not have to then become my decisions. Too many times I've seen people go along with another's demands "just to be polite," but ended up miserable and, ultimately, always putting their own likes aside "just to be polite."

Perhaps we should, as Nancy Reagan once proposed, "Just say 'no,'" and say it without excuse. If you come up with an excuse, or a reason, people can get around it. If you say, "No, thank you," it's a polite door-closer. "Why not?" "Because I don't want to, thanks."

It's nice to pick up on opportunities; people can open us to experiences we might not have had otherwise. But there are times when we just do not want something, or we don't want this or that person dictating to us. That's when we drop the "just to be polite" leash and run our own lives.

There are plenty of people who will suggest things they think we might like and will leave it up to us to decide if we’d like to do it right then. They are friends; they know us and know in what new directions we might like to explore. But that’s it; they’ve planted the idea and in time we might want to try it out.

Getting people excited about something is an art. It takes knowing the other person and knowing what they might like even before they do. You also have to know just how far to go when you present it as a possibility. Then you step back and let the plant grow.


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