That little quote is from the book, “The Power of No: Because One Little Word Can Bring Health, Abundance, and Happiness.” The book talks about the power of saying no, and the freedom it can bring, while admitting the anguish, desperation, fear, and anxiety it can also bring. It is a brave word to say.

Have you ever noticed how young children, toddlers especially, love to say “no” – but don’t love that word nearly as much when someone says it to them? I think adults can learn something from that! While we still hate when other people tell us no, when did we start equally despising saying no ourselves? Hellloooooo social pressure. We have somehow come to believe that to be successful, to maintain our reputation, to get that promotion, to be liked and loved, we must do anything and everything people ask of us – whether or not it fits into our schedule, life, or even our goals.

I’m here to tell you it is okay to set boundaries. In fact, it’s healthy for you, your family, and your company. You cannot fulfill your job and your intended purpose if you are constantly a slave to other people and other projects.

I’m really not one for setting New Year’s Resolutions – mainly because I’ve never been good at keeping them, so I kind of gave up hope. In 2016, I did manage to keep a resolution I had been making on Jan. 1 since I was a young girl – lose weight. I finally did it last year (can I quickly tell you how relieved I am to not be making the same New Year’s Resolution again??). So now I’m feeling emboldened by my newfound ability to follow through on promises to myself, and have found a new strength and confidence in the last year. Sometimes it just takes overcoming a hurdle to prove you are valuable – and so is your time, effort, and ability. While I didn’t make a resolution to say “no” more in 2016, I think I did – simply as a side effect of finding success with losing weight. I said no to foods, no to drinks, no to commitments that cut in to my precious gym time, no to toxic relationships, and no to being someone who was married to her work. Until 2016, I didn’t realize there was any other way to be; if I wasn’t married to work, I wouldn’t be successful, and I would let people down. That is just simply not true. You must care for yourself, too.

This issue talks a lot about the word “no” – in various forms. First, Michael Pinto talks about the power of “no” when you know some advice you are receiving on a project is incorrect. His two real-world examples will blow your mind. Then, Andy McCabe shares his feels on being on the receiving end of a “no” recently. And on page 44, Annissa talks about learning to work with other contractors, and learning when to say no when the job just doesn’t fit in your schedule or match your company’s goals.

What will you say “no” to this year?