The Year of No


I keep reading about YES days, YES years, saying YES and seeing what happens. But you know what? I’m tired of saying yes. I say yes to too much. Saying yes has gotten me to a state in which I’m exhausted, stressed, scrambled, chaotic, and feeling blurry. I say yes to things out of guilt, out of obligation, out of fear of hurting someone’s feelings. I say yes because I’m capable, because I have a spare second, because I’m (occasionally) a nice person.

So this year I’m going to change that (well, not the being a nice person part, I hope…). I’m going to add a powerful word to my vocabulary. A word that my two-year-old has mastered to a tee. She says it unabashedly, without worry, without fear of consequence. I want to be like her. So this year, I’m taking a page from her playbook and saying this word far more often:


The Year of No

As moms we are presented with thousands of opportunities to say yes or no every day. There are a gazillion options from which to choose for sports, holiday events, school activities, playdates, scout outings, birthday parties, social events, etc. Our kids want to do a gazillion other things: play this or that, buy this or that, go here or there. We need to be more frugal with our yeses. We don’t have to see Santa seven times. We don’t have be somewhere, or doing something, every second of the day.

In order to live our best lives, it’s time to start saying NO for the right reasons.

NO to invitations on those already too busy weeks. You don’t have to hop between four different parties in one night just because you were invited to all of them.

NO to extra projects or tasks that don’t serve any purpose other than “busy work.”

NO to sacrificing sleep for non-essentials.

NO to over-booking our kids and ourselves.

NO to mindless social media scrolls.

NO to things that will add more stress than good.

NO to things when the sole reason for wanting to say yes is FOMO.

NO to things that don’t fit our goals, our budget, or our interests.

Let’s reserve those yeses for the things that do matter. By adding No, we’re actually opening the door to a whole new slew of yeses. Good yeses. More time with loved ones. More availability to help friends in need. More energy to pour into the things we love, to reach our goals, to stay focused. More clarity to see what our yeses and nos should be.

YES to challenges and the unknown.

YES to helping someone in need.

YES to exciting adventures.

YES to reading and continually learning.

YES to sitting down and playing with the kids.

YES to talking on the phone with a friend.

YES to being open and available.

YES to down time.

YES to strengthening relationships.

YES to things that help us grow, love, live.

Take some time to give this some thought. Where will your best Nos and Yeses fall this year?


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Family is everything, and I can think of no better town to live in with my high school sweetheart and our four young children. Although we've been here for a few years now, we often find that it still feels like vacation. Embracing the natural beauty and slower pace were easy. Learning to love Orange wasn't too hard. However, my mid-western roots shine through in my inability to accessorize my daughters with giant hair bows and my preference for unsweetened tea. Being a mother is more incredible than I ever dreamed, and even though our days are utter chaos riddled with exhaustion, I wouldn’t have it any other way. I blog about anything and everything related to motherhood at Stroller Savvy..


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