I had an interesting awareness yesterday that you might appreciate – I was offered a leadership opportunity in a professional association I’m part of. I was flattered, but also hemmed and hawed about it for a few weeks. Here’s why…
Two things kept coming up: my business and my energy. My plate feels pretty full. I have some ambitious goals. But when I thought about my colleagues in association leadership, I felt silly saying I was “too busy” to serve. Like I was a wimp! Like I was feeling scarce about my introvert energy and capacity to handle as much as my colleagues.
So while my brain knew that I needed to decline, my heart kept saying, “yes, but it’d be wonderful to be of service.”
But was it my heart? Yes, but an even bigger NO! It was my ego.
My self-important, keeping-up-with-the-Joneses ego.
My I-need-to-prove-that-I-can-play-in-the-sandbox-with-the-big-kids-and-be-as-crazy-busy-as-everyone-else ego.
It was my ego stepping in and ignoring what I knew about my energy, my need for down-time, and need to create space around my carefully chosen priorities so I could give them my best.
I finally realized that if I was going to say “yes,” it needed to be from a place of confidence, love and power. As it stood, I would have been saying “yes” out of fear that someone else would think I was a light-weight.
Needless to say, I respectfully declined. And that felt powerful!
So when you feel torn about saying “yes” or “no” to something, consider who’s in the driver’s seat: your heart, your head, your ego, your inner critic, your fear… one, some or all of the above, or something else entirely. Notice if you’re trying to compare your energy to someone else’s. Sit with it long enough to discern what’s true for you. Then make your decision based on that place of personal power that reflects you at your best and doesn’t give a hoot what others think.