Oh, HELL NO! That’s what I feel like saying a lot during this time of year. But somehow I always get sucked into the madness. I do things that leave me frazzled and overwhelmed. But as a fellow introvert, I think you’ll understand that it’s not entirely my fault.
You see, a lot of people believe that introverts don’t want to partake in the holiday festivities, because we don’t enjoy them. That’s not entirely true. Often, we want to do so much more than our energy allows. So, we say yes to all things shiny and bright and full of cheer. And then we regret it.
I must confess that I definitely overcommitted this year. On top of volunteering to host our family Christmas dinner in my tiny apartment, I also said yes to an invitation to perform at a salsa dance event, AND I started a new introvert website.
There were a smattering of other unnecessary yes’s over the past couple of weeks. So, in the hopes that you don’t make the same mistakes I did, here are 7 things I’m saying no to at Christmas from now on.
1. Presents for everyone.
Buying presents for everyone is seriously one of the most stressful parts of Christmas. This year, I’m giving nearly everyone in my family the same homemade gift, except for my little nieces and nephews. If I host Christmas at my house again, I’ll probably suggest a Secret Santa type arrangement.
2. Going here, there, and everywhere.
Nothing stresses me out more than having to run around town to buy everything on my shopping list. I know a lot of introverts feel the same way. If you can, order your presents online, or get all your shopping done in one place.
The same goes for specialty food items. I’m vegan, so believe me, no one knows the temptation to go grocery store hopping more than me. But this time of year, it’s just not worth it. Choose the one-stop shop whenever possible.
3. Committing to activities I’m not excited about.
As introverts, we have to be selective about where we spend our energy. If you’re asked to volunteer your time for, say, a church activity, or a fundraiser, think carefully about whether it’s worth the energy. If it’s not that important to you, say no thanks.
4. Keeping every gift I receive.
In this blog post, Denise Duffield-Thomas says, “Just because someone’s gifted you something doesn’t mean you need to make a shrine of it in your house and keep it forever.” Being a major minimalist myself who absolutely hates clutter, this was music to my ears. If you know you’ll never use it, go ahead and regift it, donate it, or throw it away.
5. Trying to be perfect.
I don’t know who I’m trying to impress, but there’s some evil little pageant mom within me that’s constantly nagging me to put on a great show. I put a lot of pressure on myself to be the hostess with the mostest. This year I’m saying no to being perfect, and HELL YES to self-compassion.
6. Trying to do it all on my own.
This one is closely tied to trying to be perfect. It’s as if I can’t win unless I do it all on my own. But for highly sensitive introverts like me, accepting support is the key to staying sane over the holidays. So, let your friends and family shoulder some of the burden.
7. Spending time with people I don’t really like.
The older I get the more I value close friends. I see that superficial acquaintances just aren’t worth the energy, especially if you’re an introvert. So, give yourself permission to say no to invitations from people you don’t really jive with.
What about you?
What do you wish you’d said hell no to this Christmas? Let me know in the comments below. I’d love to hear from you.
I know that saying no and speaking your mind as an introvert can be tough. That’s why I’ve created a new website dedicated to helping introverts develop confident conversation and connection skills. I’ll be adding new blog posts this week. For now, you can grab my free Introvert Conversation Cheat Sheet Here.
Christmas brunch at my place with my BFFs. Follow me on Instagram.
I am saying hell no to everything this year. I am going to spend Christmas at the beach, recharging and alone. It’s something I have wanted and needed to do for years. Merry Christmas everyone and I hope you can spend it the way you want to as well!
Sounds like, bliss, Rick! Enjoy! 🙂
Rick has a great idea…..
Michaela hits another homerun with this blog…..
I will be enjoying my Christmas Eve by my lonesome(but not lonely) while my wife and kids visit my very Extroverted relatives for hours of “fun.”
Polar Express, Hallmark movies and the Weather Channel here I come while feeding my squirrels by the dozen.
A few beers and a chairmans select wine are within reach if needed too…..
Hey last year was the last time I said yes to everything and everybody this year I give it all up I told myself first He’ll No and then others who came I said He’ll No you can handle it get help from others today I’m relaxing and enjoying the holidays and people who I want to spend it with
I loved reading this! In the past, I have said yes to far too much, either out of obligation or desire. This year it was hell no to Christmas as usual. I’m taking a lot of breaks to recharge my batteries and ditching the sugary foods.
I’m saying hell no to family gatherings that go on for days (if the extroverts have their way!). A nice meal or trip out with my ever-growing family is lovely, but why do we have to do it all again the next day with pretty much the same people ? Hell no!
joe santella im staying home this year i wanna relax and catch up on my sleep i dont bother calling anyone i dont wanna be selfish but i want some alone time that’s all. cheers merry x-mas michaela xoxo yur friend joe santella
I’m saying no to feeling I have to compete with the “how are you spending Christmas” question. Heaven’s grown adults, seniors even, will rapsodize endlessly about the extent of their Christmas celebrations….my daughter and are unwrapping a few gifts the night before, sleeping in, bringing the dog to the dog park whereupon we will meet numerous other Christmas refugees and evacuees…she will go to the movies with her boyfriend at some point…..and feel perfectly free to do nothing….we’ve already attended a church concert event this weekend and dinner afterwards with friends. Good Enough. Content enough. Simple enough. Grateful enough. Not competing!
Hell no was easier this Christmas than any past ones, partly due to the pandemic and the size of my small house and new pets inside. My sis understands and I honestly think no one else really cares, but it is easier with new pets to stay at home and wonder of wonders, it snowed today. I don’t hate being with others, I just hate all that goes along with a religious tradition I don’t believe in.
Not feeling guilty about setting boundaries and making my comfort/needs just as important at as anyone else’s is something I have been working on this year with success and I will be carrying that over into the new year.
I said ‘no’ to everything except work. This is something I absolutely love, especially during this time of year (the slow season, and when nice people tend to become vicious).
I’m using the time to conserve energy, finish another book, enhance my skill set, and do what I love, not what everyone else ‘thinks’ I should do…
I will love starting this journey with you. I am a pet sitter and its perfect for me as an introvert because my clients and buddies all have four paws😻. And its heaven to work with them as they love their humans like no other😊.
Christmas with the pups. ..Ain’t
Me too, saying No for the first time ever, to much of the Christmas folly. One example: not getting out every single Christmas decoration I’ve accumulated over the years! Just a couple of favourites. And not even using the special Christmas cloth table napkins that would need to be washed and ironed after. Found some lovely old paper ones in the box which will be just perfect.
But to tell the truth, being alone on the beach sounds much better. Maybe next year!