The Fear of Missing Out

Refusing to Say No Out of the Fear of Missing Out Yesterday we talked about some of the reasons we have a hard time saying no. What we didn't touch on was the fear of missing out! Sometimes we say yes to things because we are afraid that we will miss out on an opportunity if we say no.

Sometimes I'm afraid that one of the following scenarios will play out if I say no:

1. I will miss out on an opportunity that will advance my business.

2. The opportunity will go to the competition.

3. My entire future will be determined if I say no to an opportunity.

4. I will never, ever again get another opportunity because I was ungrateful by saying no.

Choices 1 and 2 are actually rooted in reality. The truth of the matter is that if I say no to an opportunity it probably will go to someone else. If I'm wavering on a decision one of the main questions I ask myself is, "would I be okay if this went to my competition?" It helps me name and establish my priorities.

Choices 3 and 4 have to do with my frantic thoughts. If I turn something down it typically won't signal the end of my career. Every decision isn't a hairpin turn on which the rest of my future relies - life just doesn't work that way. Most things are in a middle area that is neither bad nor good, but rather just about building experiences.

Every now and then there IS a choice that is so important it really could change the direction of my life.  In those situations I try to do the following:

1. Make one decision at a time.

2. Make decisions from a place of contemplation rather than fear.

3. Ask my trusted advisors what they think.

4. Ask if saying "yes" would mean compromising who I am / my morals.

5. Discern if it is a season of creating boundaries or a season of growth.

Then I make up my mind. I say yes or I say no. Sometimes it isn't the right decision, but if I am acting from a place of quiet discernment most of the time the choice is correct.

Also, I'm not great at all of this! I have anxiety around the idea of saying no (which is why I've been talking about it all week). But, I do realize that all life is a gamble. There is very little that we can control. We just give things a try, speak our truth, and keep marching ahead. That's all we can really do!

When you say no what outcomes feel rooted in reality? What outcomes are from a place of feeling frantic? What are some ways you discern if saying no is correct? (Please let me know. Seriously. I'm trying to learn!)