It’s a busy world out there. Your to-do list is packed this week. You work full-time, have to get to the post office, make it to the dentist, do your laundry, make dinner…does the list end? Mine doesn’t. I can think of a million other things I need to do this week too.
Then, you’re invited to an event. An event that you don’t want to go to. It could be a party at a friend of a friend’s house, a work happy hour, anything. But you’re tired. You need to spend time with your significant other. Take the dog out.
Trust me. I get it.
Saying NO to Invitations
It’s common for people to feel guilty when declining invitations. Sometimes you’ll make up an excuse not to go. “My parents are in town,” you say. You know the drill. We’ve all done it for the sake of not wanting to offend the person extending the invite. But it’s okay to say no to invitations.
Declining Invitations Can be the Right Thing to Do
If you know that on Friday night, you’re going to be exhausted and need to relax, rejecting an invitation may be the right thing to do.
Saying no to invitations can be beneficial to both your time management process and your mental health. Trying to fit too many obligations and activities into an already crammed schedule increases stress and can increase the chance of burnout.
People from all walks of life can experience burnout. We’ve previously covered:
- Professional burnout
- Parenting burnout
- Caregiver burnout
- And ways that busy students can decrease stress
If your schedule doesn’t have time for an extra outing this week, don’t feel guilty. Take the time you need to manage your calendar effectively. Don’t over-extend yourself. It’s okay.
Learning to Say No
Still, it can be hard to say no to a friend or well-meaning acquaintance when they invite you out. So, what do we do? The best approach is, to be honest without being rude.
Simply say, “Thank you so much for the invite, but my schedule is packed this week. Maybe another time.” You don’t have to make up a lie or justify yourself for declining an invitation. And you don’t have to feel guilty about it.
When Someone Doesn’t Accept Your Answer
If a person tries to pressure you into going out, maintain your boundaries. If you know that going to an event will be detrimental to your time management and mental health, don’t go.
It can be hard when it’s close friends or family who are insistent on your attendance. Remember that you cannot take care of or be helpful to anyone else if you are not taking care of yourself.
That’s the golden rule.