The Inability To Say No

So while I have been going in once a week to the GP practice I was attached to, to assist on surgeries, I realised I was not really learning much. I had realised this back when I was actually on the rotation. Why then, did I agree to this?

Also, I got called in one day to be the nurse. That is, to triage patients and make phone calls. I remember the practice manager actually saying “Well I know there’s no compensation for this. But we’d really appreciate if you could help”. So I said yes. Even though I was sick and really should have rested.

And then, the GP asked me to do another poster for her. To educate nurses at her hospice about the signs of dying. I wasn’t really going to gain anything out of doing this. The last time I made a poster for her, it took me ages, I got stressed and annoyed and I had a million tabs open on my computer for a week. Besides, I’m on my holidays and I am trying to study and relax at the same time! I do not have time to do this poster.

So. When she asked “Does that sound like something you’d like to do?” I politely said “Thank you, but I don’t think I’ll be able to do the poster at this time”.

Yeah right.

Actually what I said was more like “Oh that sounds great! Yes I totally understand how beneficial this poster will be so don’t worry I’ll get started on the research and send you the first draft asap!”


Why did I say yes? Now I’m stuck actually doing this poster. And it is NOT fun. Following the first draft, she actually said no it’s not good enough, here are some resources to go through and do it again and make it much bigger thanks!

Why do I say yes to these things? I had to seriously reflect on this as I stared at my computer screen aimlessly going through palliative care guidelines. Anyone else would have said no. She’s not actually my supervisor anymore, I don’t owe her anything. She’s already pretty impressed with me. Then why?!

Is it because I’m such a gosh darn angel and I just love to go out of my way to do things for others and it would be such a sin to say no and disappoint someone?…. Nope. That can’t be right. Because I complain all day long about how I shouldn’t have agreed to take these things on. Then WHY?

I tell myself every time that next time I will absolutely say No………….. you can imagine how successful that is. >__> I mean… Why?

I guess it goes back to when I was in intermediate school. When I was in 8th grade, I was in the choir. And every year, one student was chosen to be the lead singer of the choir. This was the equivalent to being knighted back then. It was a huge deal. During the year, I didn’t get to be lead singer. Another girl did. Disappointing as heck I know.

But at the end of the year, for the final assembly performance, the lead singer was absent and they needed a substitute. Again, not me. It was a girl in my class from the 7th grade. Major humiliation. But then, she declined the offer to be lead singer, and I was chosen!

Actually what happened was, the choir teacher called me up and said that the other student declined because she was too nervous and asked whether I could do it. I said yes of course and thought dreams do come true!

After the performance, on the last day, I overheard the choir teacher telling other teachers about me. “She didn’t say no at all! Lovely girl that one. Said yes I can do it immediately!!”

I can’t say why, but I had this furious pride at hearing that. Hell yeah! I’m the girl who never says No. I’m the girl that can do it all and is ready for everything!

Oh God. Sounds pathetic doesn’t it?

But yep that’s why I can’t say no. It’s really just that selfish ego boost every time I do something I don’t really need to do. It’s not really about pleasing any one person. It’s about how I feel about myself. I can’t even say no to people I really do not like.

Oh but don’t get me wrong. When I do things for my friends/family etc, I  do it because I want to make them happy and I don’t complain about that.

But doing things like this is just all about me.

It’s kind of like the random acts of kindness thing. People say that can become an addiction because of how good it feels and you just go looking for that feeling again and again. Creepy right?

But anyway off topic. As I complete this poster, I hope I can shake off this awful habit.

No really. It’s not always a good thing. I put off the important things I need to do for these things I don’t really need to do.

When it comes to conflicts or important decisions, having the ability to say No is very important. I need to learn.

But for now, gotta go finish this flowchart poster. Sigh.

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