Monday, April 25, 2016

Saying no.

I've heard some people talk about "the year of yes" or challenges that they have to themselves to say yes more often. It's good in theory - try new things, get out of your comfort zone, take what life throws at you, etc. However, for me, saying yes has never been my problem. I am a yes girl.

"Want to stay for another drink?" "Yes!"
"Want to go to the movies?" "Sounds good."
"Hey Katie, want to run a marathon in Paris?" "Okay!"
"Want to go on vacation to Iceland?" "Sure!"
"Want another serving of ice cream?" "YES."

I tend to say yes a lot. It's my go to response and I like being a yes person. It gets me into adventures. It makes me someone for my friends to rely on. It gets me out of my comfort zone. And a lot of times I end up with good stories.

However, the down side of that is that I have a really hard time saying no. It stresses me out. I fret over it. I agonize if I am going to miss out on something or if I am making the wrong choice. If the path of "No" is going to lead me to missing out on life's next big adventure or the night out that something amazing and life changing happens.

Many in this day and age refer to that as "FOMO" or "Fear Of Missing Out," which is definitely something I struggle with and haven't been shy about that here. But what if it is sometimes more than just fear of missing out, but fear of making the wrong choice, of turning down your next great adventure, or turning away your future husband.

Okay, so maybe that is still FOMO, I don't know, but whatever, I struggle with it. I struggle with passing up a night out (although I have gotten much, much better at that) and with big life choices.

Over the past couple of weeks I have been contemplating some pretty big life choices and it scared the heck out of me. I struggled with what to do and it took a lot of mental energy and focus out of me. Deciding what I want for dinner is hard enough, but deciding what I want out of my life is even harder. And then in the end, I said no to a couple potential options. They were no's that were really, really hard for me to say and that was a big learning experience for me.

I'm not used to saying no. I'm not used to turning away adventure and excitement and new things. However, this wasn't a vacation or a new cuisine, but life and career choices. I think I made the right choice, but there is some sadness in turning down new opportunities.

I was told today that it is sometimes more courageous to say no than to say yes. And I think that can be true. I am learning that in my personal life. In my career. And in a place where it isn't always talked about as much -- in training as well.

Sometimes it's not smart to stupidly stick to a plan because it is written on a piece of paper. Or run a race that you haven't prepared for you. We don't always get that point of view when your Facebook and Instagram and whatever other social media feeds you follow are full of people boasting about beasting their workouts, toughing it out no matter what and training 3X a day. Okay, your feeds aren't full of that? Well, mine is.

But life happens and you need to be smart about what is right for you in that moment and at that time. I am learning that a lot with the past few training cycles I have gone through and especially with Half Ironman training and as we get down to the wire. I am doing the best I can with fitting in what my schedule allows, accepting that I have to say no to some workouts and things that are on my training plan I mapped out, and not fearing the unknown. I need to eliminate the "What If's?" and focus on the now.

I mentioned it yesterday but positivity and relaxation are going to be key elements of my last month of training. Controlling what I can control and staying positive and happy with where I am in my life. I am learning to embrace the no.

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