#WordsForWomen / #NakedThursdays
It's time that we get real. Let's talk about something that a lot of us do often. Let's discuss a subject that some may think is touchy. Let's get down to the naked truth. I am going to give you a glimpse into my mind, heart, and life. Maybe you will relate or maybe it will help you to understand the thoughts of another. Either way, I hope that me expressing myself can help you in some way, shape, or form.
This week's topic is “Just Say No”. Immediately when I hear that I think of peer pressure. That is not going to be my direct focus, but in a way it relates to what I do want to discuss. Let me start by asking you a simple question: How often do you give 90% in a relationship, while the other person is only giving 10%? Do you feel like you are contributing more effort to a relationship or friendship, while the other person doesn't seem to give you the time of day? If your answer is YES, then you know exactly how I feel. I am not saying that giving and working on a relationship is bad. It is completely necessary. I am just saying that you cannot be the only one. Maybe it is time for you to just say NO.
Sometimes saying no to yourself is the best thing you can do. If you have ever felt like you don't matter to someone or ever wondered if they are thinking about you, then maybe it's time that you tell yourself to STOP putting in all of the effort. There was a very low point in my life when I was completely exhausted with reaching out to my friends to see if they wanted to spend time with me. I was feeling alone and really reconsidering a lot of my friendships. I realized that the past 5 or more times that I spent time with these friends, I was the one who called them. I was the one who cleared MY schedule and worked around theirs. I decided to do a little experiment.
I completely stopped reaching out to them. Every time I felt like I needed someone and wanted to call or text them, I told myself NO. The truth is, I would rather be alone than be with unreliable, careless friends. I didn't want to give in because I really wanted to see how long it would take for my friends to reach out to me. I figured after a week or two they would realize that something is up and contact me. I thought that they would at least miss me or be worried about me. I mean, I was living by myself at the time and did not have family to spend time with. Being my friends, they knew that I was basically alone in this world, which is why I valued my friendships so much. I would love to say that this story ends in a good way, but it does not. The honest truth is that my “best friend” at the time never reached out to me again. She lived 5 minutes away and never tried to call or write me. She never asked how I was. She never tried to make plans like I expected. In fact, I did not hear from her at all until I moved 3 hours away, a year later. Which, at that point, it was far too late. She asked to hang out and I just said NO. My other friend did show up at my house after a few months. To my surprise he apologized for everything. It was so nice to feel like someone cared. After that, we grew apart, but I still consider him a friend.
My “Just Say No” experiment went from being an experiment to being a regular thing for me. I don't need to experiment anymore because I know who cares and who doesn't. The moment I realize that I am making all of the effort, I just say no. I tell myself that I am NOT doing this anymore. I am not going to give and give and not get anything in return.
So, I dare you to try the Just Say No experiment. I will warn you. It is NOT going to be easy! It is going to be hard to NOT contact the people you are experimenting on. The most difficult part will be realizing who actually cares and who does not. You may lose people. It took me a really long time to come to terms with losing friends that I loved. It was a shot to my self esteem and to my heart. It's hard to let go of people that you dedicated so much time and energy on. The positive side of this experiment is you learn who your real friends are and you can build relationships with solid people.
Should You Do The Just Say No Experiment? Why or Why Not?
I wrote Get Rid of Careless Friends With the Just Say No Experiment as a part of The Naked Truth blog hop.
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Robin (Masshole Mommy) says
I am actually not friends with a few people because I was the only one making an effort in the friendship and I got sick of it.
Sharon Phillips says
It can be really sad when you truly find out who your friends are. But, as you stated in your post with friends like that who needs them? You are very right. I am sure we all have friends like that in our lives too.
Penny Struebig says
It’s so hard to say no sometimes — but so necessary also. Thank goodness I have a great core group of friends. Don’t know what I’d do without them!
Joyce Duboise says
It is a sad truth! Some days it breaks my heart to think about, but for the most part I am happy to know that I am better off!
Katrina Kaminaka says
I have had many friends drift away because I am going one direction and they are going another. I miss some because I have known them for a while but I feel freer in some ways.
As I got older my social circle did get smaller. Its sad but a part of life some people are not meant to grow with you.
Great post. I’ve recently tried saying ‘no’ more often! Going good so far 🙂
We do need to keep good friends close. Toxic should be far from us
Nina Say says
I definitely need to try saying no more often. I am an extremely giving person so it is hard for me to do.
Joyce Duboise says
What have you been trying to say no to? Anything related to this post and careless friends?
Carra D says
Great post. I totally agree and relate. Its annoying when you feel like you’re the only one trying to make a friendship work and connect .
vidya sudarsan says
Friends are so important in life! It is sad when they suddenly become toxic..
Vera Sweeney says
I have had problems saying no before in the past!! Life is so much easier once you are able to say no.
michele d says
I’ve actually done this myself. Life is too short and you gotta do what’s best for you not for them.
Chubskulit Rose says
I only have few real friends around here When I was still in my former country, I have a circle of friends that I could rely but now that I am here, very few.
I did an experiment before and it was the opposite. I said yes, as I was inspired by the movie, “The Yes Man.”
Bailey K. says
I wish I had done this before, but unfortunately, I had to go through it during a health crisis. While I wasn’t able to do much, my friends were forced to either contact me and visit me or not be my friends anymore. Some stepped up, but I lost a lot of friends. But my friends that stayed and made an effort are the ones that I cherish so much!
Joyce Duboise says
Aww that breaks my heart. I bet you really cherish them. It’s so sad when people that you counted on walked away. I hope you are doing well now!
Wendy Lopez says
This last month I had to deal with an issue in my life that involved a long time friend. One who I thought was my best friend. I found out quickly that I lost her as a best friend long before the falling out. As she was gaining a new best friend and slowly pushing me out of her life. I knew it was happening but ignored it and always putting my all into the relationship. But still it did not work. It was time I said no. I am really hurt it ended the way it did. And I was very kind in expressing my feelings. Expressing my feelings is what got me outed. I thought I would be sadder. I’m not so sad. I am angry that they are going out of their way to take away my other friends as well. But I am not so sad that part of my life is over. I thought I would grieve. But for some reason I am not. Is that strange?
Tessa Smith says
Wow. This really hits home with me. Unfortunately, some of the people I need to cut out of my life are not just friends, but family members. I have spent too long making a great effort only to get nothing back in return. This is so true, and sad. Thank you for sharing. This is beautifully written.
Derhonda Cundiff says
Sometimes, I am a people pleaser to a fault. I let other people take advantage of that because I try to please them. But you have to put boundaries up in life. Be friends but don’t let them walk all over you. Give what you get and get what you give in a friendship.
Margarita Ibbott (@DownshiftingPRO) says
Food for thought. I once got rid of someone that was very toxic in my life, best thing I did though some did not understand why.
Alyssa C says
This is the sad truth and probably the reason I’m not friends with a few people. Thank you for sharing.
Sam Sly says
Thanks for sharing, it sounds like a very challenging and possibly painful thing to do. I think careless is a good word, I also think some people just do not get it and expect other people to make the effort. It is sad, but ultimately you need to do what is healthiest for you.
Notorious Spinks says
I can understand your rationale but as I grow older, I have learned that people have their own problems. Everything isn’t about you…. sometimes people are doing all they can to hold themselves above water. Life is hard. Just because your friends don’t tell you’re dealing doesn’t mean they aren’t….
Joyce Duboise says
Great point, but even if you are drowning you should still show love and support for your friends. Like you said, everything isn’t about you. Therefor, you need to think of others and put yourself in their shoes.