Sometimes ‘No’ Needs To Be The Answer

I’ve always valued my alone time, but I also enjoy leading a relatively busy life. Unfortunately in the world of a communication major, this means alone time is rare – it is communication after all, which normally implies more than one person is involved.

I bring this up because I have been busting my butt to exert all effort possible in my three classes, on-campus job, job at the St. Cloud Times, playing rugby, and most of all, being the editor of my college paper. All of this while also maintaining a social life. Holding these positions is what I have spent four years working towards – I love what I do, I am passionate about it. But I’ve been finding myself wondering when it becomes too much.

I rarely go to bed before 2 a.m. – two days a week I am at the Times until midnight, Wednesdays I spend at least 15 hours at the newspaper office, and other nights I spend doing homework or writing. Saturdays are rugby days, as are three afternoons a week. Sundays are budget meetings. Most days I make it until about 2 p.m. before realizing I have forgotten to eat, yet somehow have downed three cups of coffee.

So I can’t sleep like a normal person, but I can eyeball a font and tell you the size and style. I can’t eat three balanced meals, but I can recite a large portion of the AP Stylebook. I rarely consume water, but drink at least four cups of coffee per day.

Dont get me wrong. I’m not complaining by any means. I realize I am lucky to be doing what I love in multiple capacities and that I am paving the way for a successful future. I really do love what I do, and in a way I even love the chaotic nature of the time-management aspect. It makes me better under stress and a more adept problem-solver.

Even so, I have realized that I need to start saying no. I can’t keep taking on responsibilities (or picking up other people’s responsibilities) and still expect to lead a healthy and happy lifestyle. I need to begin trusting people to cover their responsibilities and learn to delegate. It comes down to the fact that I don’t need to be doing everything I am doing – instead I am doing it because I am a control freak.

I am a person who needs that alone time, time spent reflecting like this. That means that sometimes I need to be selfish – I do not constantly need an excuse when I tell someone no. I need to learn to say no simply because I want to say no – for my own sake.

Starting tonight. Tonight I am saying no. I am also taking a nap and eating a normal meal. It’s a start.

2 Replies to “Sometimes ‘No’ Needs To Be The Answer”

  1. Just came across your blog. Pretty neat! I’m also from NJ and also the former editor of my college paper. And of course – also in recovery.

    1. Sounds like we have a lot in common! Thanks for the read 🙂

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