Do you have difficulty saying “no” when other people ask you for help? Even when you have other more important things to take care of?
Saying “no” is a habit that many people find impossible to do – almost like going against the law! You feel guilty about turning other people down. You’re scared that they might grumble behind your back.
However, Cheryl Richardson recommends you do exactly the opposite: say no.
Say NO when you really do not have the time.
Say NO when you really have more important matters.
Say NO when you really do need to take time out for yourself.
This is the most important lesson Cheryl shares in her session during the 2013 Tapping World Summit: finding the power to say no isn’t about making other people happy – it’s about taking care of your self.
What Cheryl means here is not the kind of self care that involves getting enough sleep or eating well. Although these things are important also, the primary kind of self care is knowing what you need and fulfilling it first.
Take a look at this diagram:
1. You have your primary NEEDS
These are the needs that – when abandoned – result in long term DYSFUNCTIONAL behavior. For example, you might burst out in a fit of harmful rage when you put other people’s needs above your primary ones for too long.
According to Cheryl:
Chances are you’re going to over schedule yourself because you want to take care of other people instead of yourself. You’re too afraid that someone’s going to be disappointed or angry or upset or hurt. You want to avoid that conflict by instead putting yourself at risk.
“Putting yourself at risk” means not paying attention to your primary needs. This is the first danger.
The second danger is operating from a place of fear. You help other people because you are afraid to disappoint or hurt them, instead of helping them from a genuine place of abundant service.
This is why paying respect to your primary needs and putting them above other people is the first step towards healthy self care.
2. Besides your primary NEEDS, you also have DESIRES
According to Abraham Hicks, “Desire is creativity seeking expression.”
Every creative energy in your life must be properly expressed for you to remain healthy. If you restrain this expression, you end up blocking the abundant energy flow in your body and fall mentally ill.
That’s why if you fail to exercise your creative expression, you experience FRUSTRATION. You feel irritated, agitated, and resentful – in other words: you feel stressed out.
This stress comes from you neglecting your creative expression in favor of other people’s schedule. To avoid becoming stressed, you must be able to maintain a healthy level of expression, while also helping people from a genuine place of service.
If you were rewarded for being a good little helper, a good little girl or a good little boy, you grew up with this pattern of just being a good helper like I did. You start to believe that your value is found in your capacity to help.
However, the difference between DESIRES and NEEDS is that in certain circumstances, you can shift your focus on helping other people first. The nature of desire (according to the session by Cheryl) is secondary; whereas needs are primary – giving you some “breathing room” to move about.
In occasions like this, you will have to use your better judgement to determine whether it’s more important to express your desires or to help other people with theirs.
Which brings us to the third and final point:
3. How to apply truly authentic, STRATEGIC GIVING
The purpose of the session by Cheryl is to become a person with healthy self care. This is important so you can operate from a place of true authenticity – of STRATEGIC GIVING.
To quote Cheryl Richardson:
Do you want the illusion of being a good person on the planet or do you really want to be an authentic leader who makes a significant contribution to your own life first? When you do that you then naturally make the most significant contribution to the planet.
When you have true authenticity, you can make your unique contribution to your self, your fellow man, to nature, and all life in the Universe – as the greatest version of yourself you are meant to be.
Before that though, you must overcome all the guilt and over giving that comes from a lack of self care. You must know how to respond to the anxiety that pops up when you are faced with a situation where you have to say “no” to someone’s request for help.
This is where Tapping comes in: to help you reduce or eliminate that useless anxiety. Besides Tapping, one surefire method you can do to start healthy self care is to apply boundaries.
By applying boundaries or setting limits, you minimize the energy drain that comes from over helping. You also create more space in your life that you can use to rejuvenate, or meditate to get in touch with your true authentic self.
One example of setting boundaries that Cheryl uses with her private clients is to:
1. Set up an amount of time, e.g 6 months
2. For those 6 months, set up what you will or will not do
3. Make yourself unavailable to help requests
4. Tell everyone important that you are taking time out
Telling people ahead of time will give you room and make them understand. Though it might sound “weird” at first, this technique has been used by Cheryl to great success!