A friend of mine once said, “When we say ‘yes’ to one thing, we’re also saying ‘no’ to something else whether we realize it or not.” Wise words. And I find the opposite to be true, too. We often think of “no” as a negative response, but when stated purposefully it can open doors for very positive results.
It’s in that spirit that I write this—as much to myself as to you. I eye the bowl of leftover Halloween candy on the top of the cabinet, the birthday cupcakes in the freezer, the containers of Party Mix on top of the fridge, and know all too well how easy it is to indulge in a bite here and handful there. But when I stop and think about what I’m saying no to in that wordless, mindless “yes,” I realize I’m preventing myself from feeling strong and centered and wholesome and good. And those consequences cascade beyond just my body. After just a few spontaneous yeses to empty indulgences I begin to feel unbalanced and unmotivated, which takes a toll on my family, my relationships, my work.
Those are some big costs for little yeses. And understanding that is a big part of mindful eating practice.
So this week, especially as the paths are laid for the holidays ahead, I want to practice just saying “no” and feeling the fullness, balance and joy that comes as a consequence. I encourage you all to join me, and to notice the impact it has on you in the days ahead. And if you’re so inspired, share your experiences in the comments below . . . I’m curious to hear about all the yeses that come from saying no.