Why You Must Yes and Also No

yes and no

I’m in a season of No.

It’s not near as glamorous, impressive or blogable as being in a season of Yes. At least, I’ve heard that some people’s Yesses are glamorous. This summer, one of the books I’m reading is Let’s All Be Brave and of course I get to the chapter called Say Yes and I’m all squirmy and uneasy. Because I’m fighting for my No right now so to read someone talk about how brave saying Yes is, can sometimes shake me up a little. I audibly exhaled at the end of the chapter when I turned the page and read the next chapter title “Say No”.

Even though Yes and No are the exact opposite, we absolutely must say both every day. I need that reminder that NO is brave too and I’m so grateful that Annie recognizes that.


If you need someone to hold your hand on your brave journey, Annie is your girl.

Today, for me, brave looks like choosing to be absent from things.

What does brave look like for you today?


  1. What a timely post! I’ve managed to say ‘no’ this morning already to a weekly meeting I usually attend. I said ‘no’ so that I can finish some business ads for my husband. (it will make him happy, and I can go to the meeting next week :) I am by nature a ‘yes’ girl and try to please everybody. But I am learning that it’s ok to use ‘no’ sometimes, and you don’t need to explain why either!

  2. I’m in in the season of Yes right now, but I try not to forget to say No when it’s necessary. It’s hard for me to say no (do people think I’m weird? antisocial?), but when I do I feel better because I’m making a conscious choice for myself. I like that. What does brave look for me today? Hmmm. Probably “being more patient” with my loved ones. Now you helped me set a goal of the day – thanks!

  3. Yes, there are both!! Today holds beautiful yeses of a pink cake with aqua and green dots, Red Lobster rolls and 4 giggly girls as we celebrate my daughter’s 12th birthday. Over these past years, as I’ve seen myself in her, I’ve said brave loud noes to people who placed weighty responsibilities on my young shoulders that were far too heavy for any child. I find missing pieces of myself as I learn to love these children. Today is a celebration of sassy yeses and bold brave noes and I look forward to finding encouragement for those in Annie’s book!!!!

    My noes have been loud and bold these past years as I’ve found missing pieces of myself while learning to love my children.

  4. Love it. Brave for me right now is taking daily steps toward becoming the person I need to be to create the life I truly want. That means doing the hard things and being 100% committed to waking up everyday and being my best self.

    It’s working.

  5. Im happy I ventured over today and of course the title of this post pulled me in…..Today would have been my older brother’s Birthday….He would have been 32. So, I am trying to be brave, brave for my children, my husband, myself, my nephew, but truthfully…all I want to do is crawl in a hole and cry. He has been gone 5 years. Perhaps crying would be brave too…..~Ashley shehimthem.wordpress.com

  6. I’m not handling brave very well right now. I’m working on learning to say no and yes, depending on the situation.

  7. I have a friend who is a breast cancer survivor. She now has bone cancer and cancer in the lining of her brain. She has two children. No job. On chemo. Every time I go see her, I feel that I am seeing BRAVE in action. Pray a prayer for her please.

    • most definitely, without question, sincere prayers for your friend – and many prayers that you remain her friend; and strong, to spend as much time as you can with her, to be a loyal supporter.

  8. It’s important to know when and how to say NO. Not easy some times, but necessary. I’ll look for the book. Thanks.


  9. Opting out. That’s what brave has looked like for me this summer. Not going to all the things, being OK that I do life exactly like everyone around me. It’s made for a good summer.

  10. Brave for me right now is holding on to my self-control and trying to show my daughters what grace and respect look like. We’re going through an ‘attitude’ season and I’m saying ‘yes’ to teaching them how to have a heart of kindness.

    Does Annie have a blog?

  11. Brave looks like a few things right now.
    It looks like “No” also. It is not buying gifts and finding myself short otherwise. It is saying No to invitations I cannot afford, and attempting to take better control of my finances.

    Brave is going to a therapist in the hopes of saving my relationship from a series of indiscretions that happened when I was preoccupied with my mother being in hospital. “No” comes back in when well meaning friends tell me to stop trying, and just leave.

    Yes may be brave, but I would argue that No is braver. It is more difficult. It is not the popular, desired answer, which may sometimes have to be given to those that mean the most to us.

  12. This is something I had to learn that hard way (isn’t that often how we learn the most important lessons?). After spending one November/December being out too often and too busy I learnt how important it is to spend some time over the summer (December/January here) holidays just sitting with God and asking “what do you want for and from me this year? I’ve been able to confidently, but politely say no to the things that are not mine to take on and fully engage in the things that are mine for the season I’m in.

    I have spent the past four years saying “no, this isn’t my season” because of my study/work/family juggling act. I can’t wait (but I’m petrified too!) to see what God wants me to say yes to next year.

    Thanks for highlighting this as something that is important to get right, and to find a resource that gives us (especially women) permission to make the decisions we bravely need to make. Because how hard is it to say ‘no’ even when that’s what we need to do!

  13. Today brave for me is getting through even though I am tired (physically) and exhausted (emotuonally) and have to go to work and figure out scheduling for a sensitive situation involving a long term house guest. Being brave is overcoming my extreme desire to self protect and hide away from life. To take a deep breath ..hold my head up and make things happen like a boss! #chinupbuttercup

  14. Being brave means saying YES to something I know, deep down inside, I am meant to do. Thanks for the reminder! Cheers to new adventures!

  15. Today, brave is taking the leap to follow dreams, to explore ideas and inspirations without the fear and worry that it won’t turn out as I hoped. Brave is stomping on the fear of failure. Brave is treating everyday as the gift that it is. Brave is knowing that God gives grace even when His plan is different than mine.


  16. Gen Williamson says

    I have a devotional that says, “Your yeses mean nothing until you learn to say no.” When we say yes to too many things, we end up doing none of them well. There is no shame in knowing your limitations and choosing to limit yourself so that the things you say yes to can be completed honorably and without taking away from your family and priorities at home!

  17. Being brave is to me living a small life. Simple. Saying no to the unimportant stuff. When I’m ready to say yes it will be to myself when I finally find out what it is I really want.

  18. You definitely have to be more brave to say no then yes in my experience. Saying yes is easier in the moment!

  19. SoCalLynn says

    Thank you for this. I have to say no to a woman who I know is in a tough spot, but I just can’t help her in the way she wants me to right now without totally stressing my family out. I really don’t like being in this position. But saying no to this is important.

  20. HI
    Nice post.
    This thought just makes a fantastic approach.
    Keep it up.

  21. This brings back memories. I am one who loves to serve and always say yes to any opportunity. But there was a season, after the birth of our third child, on the heels of 3 moves in 6 months and all ordained by God in His most perfect timing, that I had to say no or collapse in a puddle of ugly meltdown. That year, I dropped our two older children off at the church for VBS, and drove off for a few hours of sanity. It was so hard. We attended a small church where everyone pitched in. But a friend had assured me, this year was a year to sit out. It a struggle wondering what others might be saying. But really….it was because I used to think that of those who did the same…ugh…humbling, refining, and healing…God is amazing when we trust Him to guard and protect our times of “no”…bless you <3

  22. I’m starting my season of No also. For me saying no takes a lot more bravery than saying yes. It’s so hard for me to turn an opportunity down. But I’ve yessed myself to sickness and have had very few well days in over a year. There’s only so much a body can take. It helps me to remember that when I say no it gives someone else an opportunity to shine. And my no, is really a yes for something else—which is usually my family.

  23. Yes! I know what you mean. :)
    When it becomes hard or I feel like I’m missing out or falling behind I tell myself that the rest of “no” is “t right now.” I will have a chance when it’s time.

  24. As much as I find beauty in the imperfect, you still need an “i” in “beautifully” in your picture with text at the start of this post. I’ve got your back :)

  25. This is just what I need to read this morning… thanks for offering freedom in a season where my Nos are outweighing my Yeses. Excited to grab Annie’s book. Also, loved the (in)courage post… “choosing to be ignorant!” YES!!!

  26. Ooh, this is going on my must-read list! Thank you! :)

  27. Thanks…I needed that…right now, I too am in a season of No. I’ve recently discovered just how busy my Fall seasons become each year and am purposefully saying no and stepping out of commitments. It’s so difficult when the no is to a good thing – but that no allows you to say yes to something even better.

  28. Wow, this is very encouraging. It’s amazing how many people struggle with saying “No”. Thanks for being honest and for the book recommendation!

  29. Thanks For the article. Yes Every successful businessman go through this phase because No give you the strong power to prove yourself and stay positive..

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