Real Talk: “No” is a complete sentence.

I adore Ina Garten.  I love her show, I love her cookbooks, I love how adorable her husband Jeffrey is whenever he is around, I love it all!  (And I think this Twitter account is just hilarious.)  A little while ago, I read this article from Forbes about Ina’s speech at the third annual Forbes Women’s Summit.  It’s all good, but one particular part of the article stood out to me:

“She reminded the accomplished audience that ‘no’ is a complete sentence and making time for oneself is equally important.”

Of course it is.  Duh!  But I needed a reminder.

I remember checking in with myself a few months ago, trying to think about what I had learned in the first months that I had been at my job.  The biggest thing:  “no” is an okay thing to say.

I’ve always preached the “say no” message, but I get now that it’s much easier said than done.  And I do — I say to say “no” much more often than I do it.  I want to help, even when I can’t.  I will do my best to make the time, even when I shouldn’t.  But I’m learning that “no” is an important word.

“No” is not about hurting feelings or making enemies.  “No” is about setting boundaries and managing expectations.  “No” is about being smart, knowing yourself, and keeping space where you need it.  Deep down, I think we all know this, but Ina did a nice job of reminding me.

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