• Kathleen Van Engen






How easy do you find it to say? I don’t mean a ‘walk around’ version of it; I mean a nice no room for confusion, DIRECT, straight-up, NO. I was terrible at it for years. I’m a little better at it today. I found it hard to say no to anyone except for my parents and even then, I only said the ones that weren’t important. “No, I don’t want to clean my room” or “no I don’t want to eat that”. Those no’s don’t really matter, at least not in the long run (except for the fact that I should have been nicer to my parents).

Do you know what’s really brave? Saying the REALLY important no’s. It takes practice, it’s a learned skill, but once you get it? Giiiiirrrrrllll you’ll be SET.

So, what are the important no’s?

Make it your own, but here are a few ideas just to get you started:

No. I won’t accept that thought as truth any longer.

No. Respectfully, you don’t have the place in my life to say that to me.

No. I can’t take that on right now, I’m committed to as much as I can currently handle.

No. You shouldn’t have said that. It was rude, racist, sexist (fill in the blank).

No. I didn’t think that was funny.

No. I actually don’t like that, I like _____.

No. I don’t give you permission to kiss me, touch me (fill in the blank).

No. I actually don’t feel that way about you. I’m sorry if you misinterpreted my actions.

No. I don’t want to go there.

No. I don’t do that.

No. I’m not okay.

No. I can’t do this on my own.

No. I won’t lie.

No. I won’t cheat.

No. I won’t compromise who I am and what I believe to be liked by you.

No. I won’t accept that you’re not willing to change in this area any longer.

No. I won’t keep that secret.

No. I can’t make that promise.

No. I’m worth more than that.

No. I DO have something to say.

No. I shouldn’t have done that/said that and I’m sorry.

No. I actually can do it.

No. I won’t sit by and watch anymore.

No. I won’t stay silent.

Those are just to name a few. So, what does your no need to be today?

You’re likely to say it more than once. That’s okay. Say it loud and say it often. Just make sure they’re the important ones. When you get good at saying no to the right things, you'll fall into saying yes to the right things. Let's make more room in our lives for the good stuff, the worth it stuff, the "who we were meant to be" stuff. Anything that gets in the way of that? No.

Always cheering you on,


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