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learning to say “no” – so that you can say “yes” to what matters


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One day I had a bit of an awakening.

I looked at my life and saw I was at a fork in the road.  I could continue down the road that I am currently on, which is a lovely road.  Well paved, with manicured grass and people rushing around me to & fro.  No one seems to have much time here, and constantly goes from one thing to the next.  My husband & I often pass each other like silent ships in the night on this road, as we hop from one meeting to the next & exchange the kids in the process.  This road offers the financial stability for vacations, but no time to take one.  The ability to buy lots of “things” – none of which seem to really quench the desires I have.

I glanced to the other path in the road and it frankly looked a little scary.  It’s a less traveled on road, not nearly as well manicured as the first – but everyone on this path seems so much more relaxed.  No one is rushing, and they look so happy.  They may not have the latest trending item that the Jones family just purchased and when they travel they stay at a 3 star hotel instead of 5.  But… they travel.  Because they have time to do so.  Their lives are more stripped down to the things that genuinely matter to them.

I recently read a quote by Ann Voskamp that says “the real hidden cost of everything you buy is how much LIFE it costs you to buy it.”

I am a quote junkie by nature, but this one in particular hit me like a ton of bricks and has stuck with me since.  Here’s what I know to be true, friends.  There are SO many things that pull for our attention.  Especially as women – moms, friends, wives, business owners.  If we don’t consciously begin to say NO to some of the things around us, we will never be able to say YES to the things that truly matter in our lives.  When I think back to some of the most joy filled & fulfilling times in my life, I don’t recall what I was wearing at that moment.  I don’t remember what brand of mascara I happened to use that day, how many weddings I had booked to photograph that year, if my home decor was just right, or if my desk was too cluttered.

I remember people.  I remember sunsets.  I remember emotions.

I have found that it is so important to stop & really analyze where we are spending our resources.  Turning away good things often brings with it the ability to have the BEST things. The things that make us tick and keep our hearts full of life.  I will choose to keep driving my paid-off ugly van, because it allows me to take a few less clients and instead spend that time with the passengers in the van.  Because they’re the ones that really matter.


5 Comments on learning to say “no” – so that you can say “yes” to what matters

  1. Jennifer Morales
    December 22, 2014 at 10:11 pm (5 years ago)

    I absolutely love this message of this post! Very well said!

  2. Dan Shallenberger
    December 12, 2014 at 10:21 am (5 years ago)

    You write in such an elegant manner. Well said. I love driving my paid off car!

  3. Andrea
    December 11, 2014 at 8:54 pm (5 years ago)

    Amanda, I love the way you wrote this! I appreciate your perspective and really admire your honesty here. Going to let that quote marinate and work on me tonight. Thank you!


  4. Sybil Brun
    December 11, 2014 at 3:15 pm (5 years ago)

    Yes & Amen! Such life-giving truth and wisdom here!

  5. Abby
    December 11, 2014 at 2:14 pm (5 years ago)

    Omigoodness. So well said, Amanda. Love, love, LOVE this. Thank you <3


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