I'm sure everyone has heard that you should say 'no' more often because if you don't you have too much going on in your life that you can't keep up with everything. Saying no helps you relax more because you have more free time, and it helps to not place too many things over your head that you know will eventually fall down over you. Or does it? Does saying no really help you?
I have never been bad at saying no. Well actually I'll say: 'I don't think I can find the time', or 'I'm quite busy', which might not be a lie, but it is just the easy way out of saying 'No I do not want to come.' The worst part is that saying: you don't want to because you don't want to is not a solid excuse. Because people will ask 'why not? What other plans do you have?' And if you don't have any they'll think you don't want to spend time with them which is not the case.
As I said I do say no or come up with excuses when I feel like I'm too busy or don't feel up for it because doing too many things simply stresses me out. Yet, I feel like I get punished for saying no And though I tried to avoid being stressed by saying no I then end up stressing over what people think of me. Because of course, I don't want them to think I'm a bad person. And I don't want them to think I don't want to spend time with them that is not the case. But being an introvert I get drained of energy by constantly being surrounded by people, whereas it's the exact opposite if you're an extrovert. Now, it's not that I feel like I'm drained of energy every time I'm with people, but with some people I put in more effort than I do with others. E.g. I never feel drained of energy when visiting my parents because I can just tell them 'no I don't want to do that', or I can hide in my old room if I want to be alone. But sometimes if you have people over or you're visiting someone, you can't suddenly disappear for a couple of hours and tell them you need some alone time. (At least I wouldn't do that).
But saying no really should not make you feel bad, and it should not be so damn hard. Because let's face it we all have moments when we don't feel up for certain things, and what's worse? Going anyway knowing you won't enjoy yourself to please someone else or staying at home knowing you'll feel good, but maybe also offend someone? I feel like it's a non-ending battle and no matter what you're going to lose. But why? If saying no means you'll feel less stressed then I'd say it's not a bad thing. Putting yourself first should be a reality. There's no shame in that because if you don't put yourself first how will you expect anyone else to? Besides you need to be happy first, in order to make anyone else happy. However, that does not mean it's easy saying no. But who the hell said that life was easy? Take small steps and focus on yourself. I'll almost go as far as to say it'll make you happier, but everyone is different, but there's definitely no shame in saying no even if you don't have an excuse for saying so, and there's no one else who should tell you how to live your life.