Simple Saint or Brazen Bi-otch? Finding a Balance.

by Guest Blogger, Amber

A few months ago, Miss Dre wrote a pretty spot on article regarding How to Be a Mean Girl. Let's face it... every now and then, we all feel the need to take off the white gloves and let our claws out. What I really liked about her article is that she put the personal spin on it, and explains,

"I never turn anyone away because I like to make the lives of those closest to me a little easier."

I think this is something we can all relate to, but where do you draw the line? Can we turn down the obligatory feelings to help friends and family every now and then and still walk away guilt-free?

Finding a balance between being a Simple Saint or a Brazen Bi-otch can be a tricky one. No one wants to be a pushover. But no one wants to be an undependable friend, either. You don't want to hurt anyone's feelings... but you always want to have "you" time, too, right? Here are some simple tips to help you find a balance:

1) Recognize that "No." can be used as a full sentence. This is something you should always remember. Don't feel obligated to go out with friends if you want to have a night in, or give your best friend a ride to work, even if it's 1/2 hour out of the way. You don't need to have an excuse for not wanting to do something that inconveniences you! It is not your responsibility to lend out money, give rides, and go way out of your way to do something other people won't take on as their own. A simple "no" -without having to explain yourself- will suffice. If anyone pesters you, tell them that, as much as you'd like to oblige, you already have a prior commitment.

2) Make time for yourself, at least 2-3 times a week. Whether you like to go out of your way to help people or not, this is an important thing to keep in your routine. Having "you" time once or twice a week will truly keep you sane. Especially those weeks where you feel overburdened with your boss needing this, and your sister wanting this, and your cat needing three trips to the vet. Knowing that you have your own time to yourself won't make you grumble and growl as much if others are asking favors for you because you know that you're still getting in your (much deserved) R&R.

3) Repay favors in your own way. If someone goes out of their way to help you, don't let them hold it over your head. It was their decision to help you, after all. Not to say you shouldn't repay the favor, but don't let them come at you with, "Well, I did such and such for you, and you can't let me borrow your cell phone for the night even though your expecting a big important call about a new job?" Or something similar. Remind them that you're really thankful they were able to helped you out and repay the favor when it's convenient for both parties.

4) Don't expect things in return. This goes hand in hand with repaying the favors. Don't you be the person that holds things over anyone's head, either. It was your choice to go out of your way and help someone. Maybe they'll return the favor, maybe they won't... just be sure you are 100% aware of this when doing something for someone. Doing it to be kind -not because you want an IOU- will make you feel a whole lot better about the situation.

5) Know your worth, girl. Just remember your time is valuable. Your time is everything. So don't waste it! If a friend, colleague, or less-than responsible family member wants to take up your time and you're not interested at all, just say no. That is your right. After all, you could be doing a lot of other great, beautiful, inspiring and world changing things. Right? ♥

*Amber is the lovely blogger behind The Sofisticate, the lifestyle guide for alternative chicks.  While Amber discusses beauty, fashion, and art on her site, she focuses on self-love and inspires others with her positive vibes.  Please be sure to check her out over at The Sofisticate!  You won't be disappointed!
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