There are times when I really enjoy serving people. I’ve been volunteering for one thing or another my whole life. Part of it was how I was raised (serving in the church, being a helpful person) but another part of it early in my life was my inability to say “NO”.
I didn’t WANT to say “NO”, but I also really didn’t pay much attention to the fact that every time I said YES to something – I was actually still saying NO to other things in my life. The same is true that when you say yes to one thing, you may not realize you are saying no to other things.
Yes to staying late at work is saying no to more time with your family.
No to staying late at work is saying yes to more time with your family.
No to getting up early to hit the gym is saying yes to that bagel or muffin that I will need to fuel my morning.
Yes to getting up early to to hit the gym is saying no to that bagel or muffin that you won’t need or want after you work out.
*** is there anyway I can work out and still eat my bagel? Probably, but you get my point!
This is a POWERFUL tension in our lives – or at least it can be when we fully understand the kind of control we have over making intentional choices with our time. It doesn’t have to STRESS US OUT every time we come to a decision if we simply learn how to say those YES’s and NO’s with intentionality.
Once you realize the power of your YES’s and NO’s – you will want to make your YES’s THE BEST YES’s and your NO’s the BEST NO’s they can be for your life.
We all need to know what THESE are in our own lives. My priorities might be different than your priorities. That’s okay. You just have to know what they are for you. Who comes first- God? Family? Yourself? You need to have some sort of understanding as to what your priorities are so you can align your YES’s and NO’s to help you fulfill those priorities.
“Matt – I don’t have enough time in the day to meet ALL the needs of ALL of my priorities!”.
If this is your first thought, then you fail to understand the concept of priorities 🙂 There has to be someone/something that is MORE important than others. Then something that follows, and so forth. The failure to make something a PRIORITY is more than likely rooted in a fear of disappointing people (people pleasing) and taking on other people’s expectations for your life. That’s just going to have to be a separate blog post because these are 2 major issues for most of us!
Your YES’s and NO’s also change in different seasons of life. With younger kids you may not choose to travel as a family as much. With older teens, you may choose to start a new business because you have more margin. There are seasons of personal rest and there are seasons of investing your life in others. No matter the season, knowing your priorities helps you determine your BEST Yes’s and your BEST No’s for your life right now.
3. Divine Interruptions
I want to separate this out. Whether or not you have GOD as your first and main priority, I noticed there are many times in my life that God brings about an interruption because He wants me to take notice of something RIGHT NOW that MIGHT NOT align with my list of priorities. I have to be open to the idea that God might choose to interrupt my regularly scheduled life and want me to say YES to something and say NO to a priority for a particular reason – at a specific time!
NOTE – not every interruption is from God. It takes a close relationship and a daily practice of listening to His prompting in order to get better at discerning these interruptions.
Understanding and working through your priorities, seasons, and divine interruptions – you can change the TENSION in your YES’s and NO’s from being STRESSFUL… to being POWERFUL options in your life.
When you realize the POWER in this TENSION, you will be living a life with purpose and experiencing the LIFE YOU DESIRE by leveraging your BEST YES’s and your BEST No’s.