Monday Mantra: I Am My Own Advocate

“Say no.” It’s become such a powerful quote in the name of mindfulness—so much so that I’ve started to ignore it. I’ve started to label it as cliché and unimportant. [Oh how our arrogance is never far, even in the practice of mindfulness.]

So, last night I hit play on a favorite podcast of mine, Dear Sugar with Cheryl Strayed and Steve Almond. The topic was “no” and I honestly didn’t think it pertained to me too much, but I listened anyway because it’s my favorite and because Oprah was the guest, (rule in my book—if it involves the big “O”, you pay attention.)

I already had today’s mantra written, but after listening I knew that this week’s mantra had to be about saying “no”. Not because I thought you needed it—but because I did. 

As an empath saying “no” has always been hard for me. I am a people pleaser. But saying “no” is not my biggest struggle. Actually my biggest struggle it’s letting other people say “no” to me.

I let people say “no” to me left and right, without resentment and without care. Someone says “no” and in return I say, “that’s fine” and I truly mean it. I change my course and I’m on my way.

I tend to always find the best in any situation. I literally think I could find a way to be happy in most situations. And that’s not to brag, it is a quality of mine that I treasure, but it has also gotten me very comfortable with settling.

What hit me last night as I was listening to the podcast is that when I allow other people to say “no” to me so easily, I am really saying “no” to myself. If I continue to let people change my course, I will never be on the course I want to be on—the course that has not been dictated by another person.

Nobody will ever be the advocate for you that you need. No one—best friend or partner—knows your desires like you do. And no one can decide you are worth those desires unless you decide you’re worth them first.

The thing is, I do know my worth. Yet, I am very quick to give it away in the name of ease, convenience, or the happiness of another person.

This post is very specific to my situation, but I wonder if you can see some of yourself here. Or maybe you see a friend. Whether it’s your lesson to learn this time around or not, I think we can all benefit from being reminded that we are our own advocates. Start there, be firm there, and the rest will come in time.

I am my own advocate.

That does not make me selfish or narrow minded.

I say “no” to your “no” so that I can say “yes” to me.

Have a happy & healthy week!