Happy New Year!
I’ve been toying with whether I want to post my new year’s resolutions here, mostly because then I’d actually have to be accountable for them (lol). So instead I wrote about a discussion my sisters and I had…
Every year we have this tradition where we sit down and write our resolutions out and this year one of my sisters wanted to put down “Be more selfish”. I instantly dismissed it as negative but she insisted it wasn’t as bad as it sounded. We’ve talked a lot this year about having the confidence to say no to people and this resolution was a summation of that. Having thought about it, I honestly think it’s something we all need to be putting on our lists because let’s be real, you don’t owe anyone anything.
Here’s a list of things you definitely don’t owe anyone:
1. Favours – You do not owe anyone a favour. This is one of the harder ones to remember and often we can let guilt suck us into doing things for other people but it’s important to remind yourself that wanting to help someone should come from kindness, not obligation.
If someone did something nice for you, that’s great. Remember to be courteous and thank them but you are not indebted to them.
2. Apologies – This has become increasingly important to me as I’ve grown older. I believe that you don’t owe it to anyone to say “I’m sorry”, unless you genuinely feel you want to apologise for something. Sometimes an apology can seem like the right thing to do to calm a situation but if it’s not heartfelt then it’s just words isn’t it? An apology given when we are not ready to move on will only temporarily heal the wounds – anger towards someone will usually resurface and cause greater harm in the long term. Apologies should be given when the issue has been resolved in our own minds and when you genuinely mean it.
3. Relationships – Be it romantic or friendships we don’t owe it to anyone to associate with them. This one can be tough and one that I can relate to because recently I struggled to make the realisation that just because I may have known someone for a very long time that does not necessarily mean we need to be friends. People change and grow and as they do, their priorities and outlook on life changes. These people will always have a special place in my past but I guess I’d rather they just be somebody that I used to know. As sad as it may seem, time spent with somebody who isn’t the person that you used to know is time that is wasted.
4. Time – You don’t owe somebody your time just because they have requested it. This sounds incredibly harsh, and obviously doesn’t apply to the workplace (can you imagine the response you’d get if you said this to your boss?!) but more so in your personal life it’s important to remember that you don’t have to see or spend time with somebody if you don’t wish to. You don’t have to accept a date just because you have been asked. This one is one I’m struggling with and I feel an enormous amount of guilt but if it doesn’t make me happy or triggers my anxiety then I’ve got to learn to say no!
5. Privacy – We don’t owe anyone our life story or our secrets. If you don’t want to talk about something personal, you don’t have to, even if a friend has asked. And, to be fair, a genuine friend would not push you to if you weren’t comfortable. As a blogger, it can be hard to find that line where you want to keep things private but it’s definitely something I’ve always been wary of.
Reminds me of a quote – “Everybody always asks if you have a career, if you’re married, if you have children. As if life was some kind of grocery list, but no one ever asks us if we are happy. ”
It’s all a huge learning curve especially if you struggle with confidence but I guess we’ve all got to remember that it’s totally OK to put yourself first because yup, you guessed it, you don’t owe anyone anything.
Which of the above have you struggled with?