Why is it that saying No is so hard sometimes? It’s like saying No is a forbidden house that you can’t enter unless you know the guy, who knows the guy, who knows the guys cousin, who knows the guys mother, who has a friend, who knows the real guy, but they can’t unlock the door unless he talks to his best friends brother, but he can’t unlock it either unless he goes down to the bottom of the ocean in the general area where he believes he dropped the key on an expedition to Aruba. Complicated right? In reality the forbidden house is right across the street. It has no fence, and no one’s watching it(including no guard dogs). Plus, the door is wide open with a buffet of your favorite foods and it’s not a trick either!
I’m talking about the simple decisions, like, saying no to another episode of “Friends,” an extra cookie, the rest of the bag of chips, another hour of Call of Duty, and another hour of snoozing your alarm. We call these temptations and these temptations are out to get us like the dog going after the steak bone that made its way to the grass during the family barbecue.
Yet, why is it still so hard to say No to these “little” decisions?
The true answer to that question might be hidden in a treasure chest at the bottom of the Bermuda Triangle but… what I can say is that part of it has to do with reminding yourself daily about Why you’re here. Your Why will trump those temptations every time if it’s strong enough. And the Habits you implement to stop yourself from “straying away” from your Why will protect you from those temptations.
I’ve been battling this, saying No thing for quite sometime, and I’ll probably be facing this “little” battle for the rest of my life.
Although, just a few days ago, I had a major victory in my life…
I said, “No” to… another movie. Yes that’s correct. I didn’t watch 2 movies in a row. To some of you, this may sound silly, but to me this was a huge moment. A little backstory to this. Three weeks ago, I was finally fed up with my “abusive” use of watching movies. If you’ve been keeping track of my blog from the beginning, I told you about how in the beginning of the Spring I stopped watching movies, as frequently, and actually implemented a barrier that only allowed me to watch a movie when I finished a book. three weeks ago, I broke through that barrier and decided to watch multiple movies in a seven day period. Each night, during this time, I usually fell asleep on the floor I was so worn out. Plus, I decided to dig into quite a bit of junk food. Specifically, Turkey Hill ice cream was on the menu more than a few times. So, that played a part too. Because of this though, I took out a note card, put it up on my mirror, and wrote down no movies until the first of the month. This turned out to be 16 days with No “movie watching.” This turned out to be a crucial decision for me.
Back to what happened a few days ago when I said, “No” to another movie. It was, about 10:30 and after I finished up the movie I had been watching, I had another movie ready to go. It was a good one too, a classic James Bond movie. I was ready to see Bond kick some ass. I was ready to press play too, when… I remembered what habit I implemented a week ago.
I implemented a night time routine, where I read, reviewed the day, wrote freely, and planned out the next day. Out of the week since I implemented this habit, I had been pretty consistent with it, but before this night, I was on a two day dry spell. I changed that though, when I decided to turn the movie off. I read from a great book, planned out my day, wrote, reviewed the day, and got ready for bed.
It was a triumphant feeling and I woke up the next day feeling refreshed and knocked out my whole morning routine very efficiently. Thus, having a pretty successful day.
That’s just one victory though. If I want to continue to have this feeling and continue to accomplish my goals. I’m going to have to continue to say No. Temptations will be after me just like they’ll be after everyone.
“We gain the strength of the temptation we resist.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson