Learning to say no.

By Cole


The Word NO: one big problem with two little letters.

Me before parenthood: I would love to help you move. Sure, I will pick that up for you. I would be happy to cohost 3 showers within 3 weeks at my home. Of course you can count on me for that fundraiser. Yes, I am sure I don’t need any help. Yes. It was always yes. I have always been a yes person, mainly because I have always had a hard time saying no. That little word has never been in my vocabulary, and until Bam Bam came along I was pretty okay with that.

I have been called many things: a “go getter”, type A, control freak and even on occasion bossy. None of these terms have ever bothered me, mainly because I have always felt like if I am going to commit to do something, I want to do it right and see it all the way through. This mindset usually leads to me tackling projects by myself. This coupled with the fact that I genuinely like to plan things, start and finish projects and help people has kept me in a perpetual state of being overextended for as long as I can remember. That being said, that version of me did just fine pre-baby. The current me is struggling with being able to balance my three full time jobs: wife, mom and career and the things and events that “yes me” used to be able to do.

Since returning to work I have be grappling with how and when to say “no” and more importantly how to ask for help. Because to be honest I hit a wall, a wall of exhaustion and frustration, and finally came to the realization that it is impossible for me to say yes to everything. Whether I like it or not I have to learn how to say no to taking on more than I can handle and instead say yes to allowing others to help me when they offer.

Saying “yes” to the following things has been extremely helpful:

  • A meal train service. What better way to be able to spend more quality time with your little one than by not having to worry about meal planning and cooking!
  • Help with cleaning your house. This one was hard for me. You want to clean my bathrooms? Are you sure? Thank you!
  • Babysitting so that you can leave the house or do something nice for yourself. Alone time is hard to come by and if someone is willing to give you a little time for a walk, pedicure or even a nap take it!
  • Talking to someone about the challenges you are facing as a new mom. Whether this is a friend, family or a mental health professional everyone needs to vent, talk about how you are feeling and share stories.


What have you allowed yourself to start saying “no” to? Or more importantly what are some of the things that you started to say “yes” to that help make your job of being a parent a little easier?


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