This year, my sole resolution is to embrace the word, no.
Usually thought of as something negative, the word, no, can be a positive if you learn how to use it to your benefit and as a complete sentence. Can you work today? No. How about the next 4 days in a row because I was incredibly shortsighted and didn't plan for a dearth of nurses even though I'm the one who gave them all that time off? No. All by itself, it's an answer that requires no further adjectives, verbs or nouns. Not, no, I'm busy. Or tired. Or sick. Or overwhelmed. Just, No. I will grant you that the only way it's positive is if I count it as thus. For instance, months ago, I set my schedule and worked full time ahead of the holiday so I could afford to take the entire week off between Christmas and New Year's Day. When my boss begged me to work extra this week, I capitulated, allowed myself to be cajoled, and worked an additional 20 hours I'd not planned to work while she went on vacation. Who's the fool? Me. Today I'm exhausted and feel completely empty after a marathon stretch of days triaging the problems of the sick. Changing from full time to contingent this past year was to benefit me, not others, but I'm allowing myself to feel pressured to say yes all of the time. Well, not anymore. As of this moment forward, if it doesn't fit into my schedule, I will allow myself to say NO to my heart's content. If this decision is thought to be selfish, well, so be it. If I don't see to my own well being and sanity, who will?
While I fully realize that this can be perceived as a negative at a time I'm supposed to be positive and looking forward, I kind of think that making time for myself is positive, and learning to use the word, NO, liberally, is a good way to start my year.