Sometimes we feel pushed to act in a certain way, or to prioritize a value, when it’s actually not fully authentic to us. It comes from outside of us, not from within.
- You might feel pressured to value family time on top of your passion project, because that’s what we are “supposed to do”.
- In another environment, you might feel pressured to prioritize career growth on top of health and family time, because that’s “what it takes to succeed” and everyone around you is doing that.
- Or you may prioritize travel and fun because it’s what your friends are doing on Instagram, while what you actually wanted was to stay home reading, and save that money for your retirement.
When we give in to forces like these, we act in ways that are not aligned with our core values. Perhaps we do that out of guilt, peer pressure, or to people please. Whatever the reason, we often regret these decisions. Something inside of us -dies- hurts whenever we ignore our most authentic needs.
If you pile enough decisions like this, it’s quite possible that you end up with a lot of regret in life. You become disconnected from who you are and what you want—your truth. Of course, nowadays we can easily forget this pain by numbing ourselves with a never-ending stream of distractions—but that doesn’t lead to a fulfilling existence.
The way to revert this tendency is to be hyperaware of who you are, what you want, and what matters for you. In other words, to have clarity about your values and aspirations, and embrace them boldly.
Here is the challenge for today: stay true to yourself. Say yes when you want to say yes. Say no when you want to say no. Feel the resistance, and do it anyway. This is the way to integrity and self-respect.
Check out the templates for saying no in chapter 33 of Mindful Self-Discipline.
For help processing the fear or anxiety that may come when you thing of saying “no” use the ROAR Meditation in the Mindful Self-Discipline app.