When there’s no obvious escape route–and, in the digital world, this can often feel like the case–then you must remember a few fundamental principles.
The Fundamental Principles
You are allowed to say you don’t want to talk anymore.
I’m still guilty of not being able to say no. I want to make people happy, so it’s really hard for me to say no.
But saying no is a commitment to my mental health. If I never learned to say no, I wouldn’t be where I am today. I would be a miserable bag of bones drifting away in a sea of other people’s wishes and wants.
You can say no. You are allowed to choose yourself. When you say no to another person, you’re not crushing their dreams. You’re saying no to that particular interaction.
You don’t have to give an elaborate reason for why you don’t want to talk.
Here’s a big one. I also felt I needed to justify my behavior when I said no to someone.
But good news, folks. It’s not a thing.
You don’t need to come up with an elaborate excuse. You don’t need to weave a yarn about other plans or other people you need to talk to. Do that, and you’re only asking for trouble. It gives the person pursuing you something to hang onto. It gives them a thread to continue to dangle from.
You can say you don’t have time. You can say you don’t want to talk anymore. You can say you’re tired. Or sad. Or whatever honest feeling is in your body and mind at that very moment.
That’s it. And then you can say you need to go.
Your mental health must come first.
Here’s the big one. Your mental health is your operating system. It’s your furnace. If you waste all your energy on a conversation that is not serving you, what then? What happens when you have to get back to your life and what you were doing before this person sent you the 24th message you didn’t want to respond to?
Responding in a fake, half-hearted way is not being nice. It’s doing a disservice because you’re not being your authentic self.
Save your energy. Save it for situations in which you want to be your authentic self.
The world will get more from you that way, and you will give more to the world.
Has this ever happened to you online? What did you do? What did you NOT do? What will you do now?
Have a great Wednesday. Put yourself first today.