Tag Archives: self love

The Fine Art of Saying “NO” Politely

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No, is not only one of the shortest word of English vocabulary, but it’s also one of the most hardest for many of us to say.

Read on to learn how to put your foot down with these master manipulators.

1) Flattery Expert:

Whether it’s the friend who tells you how smart you are and how much she’d appreciate your help on a volunteer project she’s working on, or the school mom who insist that the students will be so disappointed if you don’t make your special cupcakes for the class holiday party, the flatterer plays to your vanity by making you feel indispensable.

Reality check: If you find it pleasurable to do—than it’s fine. According to Susan Newman, (PhD, author of The Book of No: 250 Ways to Say It—and Mean It and Stop People-Pleasing Forever.) If it’s not brain surgery, others can do it—perhaps not with your pizzazz, but it will get done and the cosmos will not explode in the process”.

Ideal Answer: Flattery can go both ways. Instead of complying, put the ball in the flatterer court. Say something like, “You’re a great baker—I can hand you the recipe! Why don’t you try it; I’m sure the kids would love it”.

2) Guilt Expert:

Your mother insists that you never call—never meaning your three calls a week aren’t enough. Or your friend sighs that you seem to have time for everyone but her—and does it while the two of you are together having dinner.

Reality check: Step back and get perspective. If it were a perfect stranger in your position, what would you think? If your grown kids behaved this way towards you, how would you feel? Ask a friend for some insight. If it seems like a bigger minefield than you know how to handle, consider talking to a psychotherapist to help you sort it out.

Ideal Answer: According to Dr. Newman, no one can do enough for certain people, so don’t. Avoid argument— its futile and you can never win—so it is better to calmly address the person how it’s going to be. “Mom, I’d rather we didn’t have this same argument over and over. If we can’t talk about something else, let’s hang up and call back when we can”. Or tell your “neglected” friend, “I’m sorry you feel this way, but I try to see you as much as I can”.

3) Sabotage Expert:

You’re committed to losing those excess pounds, but every time you go out with a certain friend, he tries to get you order dessert. “Just this one time can’t hurt”, he says. “But you can’t come and have the chocolate cake!” This category people tries to validate their choices by making you behave as the do.

Reality check: Consider yourself as a leader, not a follower, and ponder about how furious you’ll be when the number on the scale rises after all that hard work. “Saying no is not about selfishness but about self-respect. You’re standing up for what is right for you”, says William Ury, PhD, (Harvard University).

Ideal Answer: Stand firm, and then redirect the conversation. You don’t need a lot of explanations or excuses. “No, thank you. Tea is just fine for me. Are you going to watch American Idol this season? I wonder how the new hosts will be.”

4) Whining Expert:

Every time your coworker receives a hard assignment, she starts in on how unfair it all is, that she’s the one who always gets difficult stuff. Just to make her stop complaining, you end up offering help.

Reality check: Even if she has a point—your boss does give her more difficult work—this has nothing to do with you. It’s between the boss and her, and it’s up to her to deal with it.

Ideal Answer: Cut her off at the pass before she really gets rolling. “You know, you may have a point. This does seem to be a pattern. Why don’t you set up a meeting with the department head to see if you can sort this out?”

5) Bullying Expert:

Bullying among the adults is more commonplace than you can imagine. According to a 2007 study of 8,000 workers carried by the “Workshop Bullying Institute” proved that 38 % of workers had been bullied. Bullying amongst adults can take many shapes, but the bully always uses his intimidating demeanor and anger to get you to do more work than you desire to do.

Reality check: No matter what you have done or not done, no one deserves to be treated disrespectfully or in a threatening manner.

Ideal Answer: A bully wants to get under your skin, so don’t let him see you sweat. Don’t respond in anger and don’t allow yourself to be browbeaten into doing something you don’t want to do. According to Dr. Ury, a neutral, firm, quiet, calm voice is more powerful than a flat loud “NO”. Speak assertively and be very clear about what you want. Say, I don’t appreciate being treated this way. Come back when you calm down,” or “ I think I’ve made myself clear—I won’t discuss it anymore”.

Stay healthy!
Kiran

Stop Blaming And Start Loving Yourself

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Self- love is the most precious gift you can ever give to yourself. Here are a few ways to show yourself some love:

Stop negative self-talk: Pay heed to your internal monologue. And whenever you feel it shifting into criticism of your relationships, your actions, your choices, your body, try to stop. It takes some time to truly overcome negative self-talk, so begin by just making yourself aware of it. How often are you berating yourself? Could you do it less? Give it a go.

Acknowledge your success: Before you go to bed each night, think back on your day. What stood out as something that you did well, that felt great, that was a major or minor success? Did you kick ass at a presentation or did you close a deal? Did you put together a fantastic outfit? Did you spend quality time with your kids? Some days this will feel more challenging than others, but keep at it. Even if the day’s success seems small, acknowledge it. And give yourself credit for it. You did it. You succeeded today.

Speak to the mirror: It’s an Old Chestnut. But I recommend it because it WORKS, guys. Before you begin your day in earnest, look in the mirror. Say good things about your body out loud while looking at your reflection. Say, “I have lustrous hair.” Say, “I have kind and welcoming eyes.” Say, “I have strong powerful legs.” Try to think of something new each day. You may run out, so feel free to recycle. Just try it. It’s amazing.

Forgive yourself quickly: We are all our own worst critics. Next time you “mess up” and fall down a self-hatred spree, listen to how you are talking to and about yourself. Would you talk in the same tone with your mother? Partner? Sister? Best friend? If not, why are you saying them to yourself? Everyone stumbles, and it is essential to learn from mistakes. But focus on the learning and forgiving, and try to move away from self-loathing, blame and shame.

Praise a lot: In my experience, praise is returned by praise. Giving praise to friends, family members, colleagues and even strangers creates a conducive environment to positivity. Pay a compliment to someone—for a moment of bravery, a good decision, an action, a choice—-and you will be surprised at how quickly that praise come back to you. How is this going to help you in Self-Love thingy? Simple, receiving compliments can be very encouraging for your self-confidence that leads to self-love. But on a subtler level, when you dish out praise to others you are acknowledging the fact that the successes of others bring you joy. You are not buying into the myth that there is a limited amount of beauty, success, or happiness available in the world. You are creating abundance for yourself and others. And that feels at once liberating and secure.

There are countless ways to love yourself. These are just a few to begin with. Good luck.

Stay healthy!
Kiran