What can you do if you get a yes or no question and neither option seems like a good answer? How many times have you been in a yes or no spot when someone asked you a good question and you didn’t know what the answer was? How many times have you felt like any answer would put you in a bad position?
For example, you might get asked out on a date or dance. If you say yes, the person thinks you’re interested in them. If you say no, the person will think you’re awful and you don’t like them. You’re just in an uncomfortable spot. If you say yes, you’re wrong because you’re in an uncomfortable spot. If you say no, you’re wrong because you’re going to be miserable. There’s always a third answer you can give to a yes or no question. You can always say I don’t know.
I’m grateful that I know that today because whenever anyone put me in a yes or no position I felt compelled to pick one position. The problem with doing that is that if someone is trying to manipulate you, you’re in a position where you have to respond in a way that they’ve set up for you. If you just say I don’t know you can put the ball back in their court. If you say I don’t know you can put them in a position to force them to do whatever’s right for them.
If some asks you out and you don’t know what to say, there’s nothing wrong with saying I don’t know. If you do know and you’re sure that you want to say no, then you want to be honest. For example if there’s someone at work that you might like a little bit but you don’t want to go out on a date with them, but you don’t want to say no and have them think you don’t like them, there’s nothing wrong with saying you don’t know. Say that you don’t know if the right thing to do is to go out with them or to say no. If they are interested in you, then they would be interested enough that to be a friend and give you time to say yes.
I know I put my wife on the spot before we were even in a relationship. I forced her into an uncomfortable situation. She liked me and she wasn’t sure if it was time to be exclusive. She was afraid of jumping into something too fast. She went with the no answer because she wasn’t ready to say yes.
She didn’t mean no completely either. If she just said I don’t know, then I don’t know how that would’ve worked out. She also said no the second time I asked her and then the third time she said yes. That was almost 5 years ago now. If I would’ve given her some space instead of trying to push the issue it might have been a little easier for both of us because she was hurt to tell me no and I was hurt to hear no.
The next time you put someone in that situation and understand that if they don’t know they can say I don’t know. They may give you an answer that seems like the best at the time, but that may not be their final answer. You can cause a lot of pain and suffering to the people in your life when you stick them in yes or no situations.
I’m dealing with my mom who has not seen my daughter yet. She lives over 600 miles away and has a lot of health issues that make it hard for her to travel. She just went to see my grandmother right before she died and that was hard for her. She is having a hard time with coming to visit so she asked me on the phone. She said that she could come and visit my family if I paid for her hotel room. I told her that my wife and I don’t want anyone staying in our house right now. We just want the three of us here and my sister said that she felt the same way after having her kids, too.
Anyone that comes to visit has to either live around here or find a place to say. I made some suggestions of places mom could say, but she wants a hotel so she could stay on her own. she wanted me to pay for her hotel and I didn’t know what to say. I prayed to be a good son, but I didn’t know whether to say yes or no. I had the feeling that maybe it would be the right thing to pay for her hotel room. I also had the thought that maybe that’s not the right thing to do to pay for her hotel room. I thought it might encourage her to do something she may not want to do. Usually when people want to do something in life, they will do it and they will make arrangements for it.
I know when I want to do something in life, I just go forward and do it and I just do my best somehow. When I said, I don’t know what the right thing to do it. I told her I didn’t know the answer to her question and she didn’t know what to do with that. She then answers the question for me.
She could just say she was going to come and book the hotel and she was expecting me to pay for it. She could also say that she could wait until Christmas to see her. By saying I don’t know, I told the truth. I see possibilities where I could pay for her hotel and I see possibilities where I don’t know. I don’t know what the right answer is though. Most of the time in my life when I pray I can just see the right answer. For this, I didn’t see a yes or no answer that was right.
If she just comes and books it and expects me to pay for it then maybe I would. If she just decides that I don’t want her to come and she’s not coming, then I won’t pay for it. I don’t know what’s going to happen in the future. I don’t want to encourage her to come when she may not want to. I don’t know whether to discourage her from coming.
The truth is I can’t know all the reasons why she’s doing what she’s doing. All I can do is take care of myself and my wife with my daughter. I do my best to just do what I’m supposed to each day.
Lots of times I get frustrated when I think I know how things should come out. I think I know what I’m supposed to do and they just don’t come out that way. Last night I tried to stream some video games and she was a little antsy and then she just lost it. I was a bit upset because I thought it would be a good time to play some games and she was making it difficult for me.
When I realized that I don’t know what’s best for everyone else and I don’t know exactly what’s going on with everyone else, trying to tell a detailed storey about what’s going on with someone else is much more difficult because it’s a lie. It’s a creative endeavor. I don’t know what’s going on with anyone else on the planet. My wife is in bed right now. She could be asleep, she might not be asleep. My daughter is here, she’s sucking her pacifier. She could be peaceful right now or she could be ready to blow I don’t know.
I don’t know is a great place to live in. It’s hard for the ego, though. It’s hard for the person I used to be where I was a know-it-all. Every yes or no question always trapped me because a know-it-all person always has to answer yes or no to everything. They can’t sit there and say I don’t know. It’s painful.
I like to share these things because I have a wonderful life today. I am given these challenges to deal with and I’m honored to have the chance to be useful to you. It seems like the challenges I deal with are also the same basic challenges that everyone also deals with in one form or another.
It might not be your mother. For my wife, it’s her mother in law. It might not be your mother, it might be your daughter. It might be your son. For my brother, it’s his brother. We’re all in different situations but for the situation I feel like it’s similar.
I’m open to talk about these things and I’m grateful to have some awareness today of what’s going on beyond the situation itself.
Embracing the state of I don’t know might sound like a state of ignorance or stupidity but sometimes it’s the most powerful. I’m peaceful with the answer I gave my mom because sometimes it’s the most powerful and the most honest answer I could come up with. I feel like she knows what she wants to do. If I give her space to do what she wants to do, she will do it. If I try to push back with my own ego and my own expectations and my own will then there’s likely to be a problem. If I give her space and say I love you, I’m here, I want to see you and I trust you to do what’s right. It’s amazing how easy it makes life.
I also do the same with my wife. I say I love her and I trust her to do what’s right. That makes it so that I don’t have to micromanage things. I can do my work and trust that everyone else is doing their work. If you need to sleep right now, I will do whatever I can to help you sleep, but you have to do the sleeping. It’s tricky to manage all these things in life.
I’m grateful that I have the chance to share these things because sharing these things helps to get perspective. It helps to see that everyone around you is dealing with something in their life today. It’s some situation whether it’s family friends the bank, work, hobbies. Anyone around you has some situation that’s challenging.
I pray today that I’m willing to use I don’t know anywhere that it is the case. I pray to be open to giving everyone around me space to be who they are and to be the most they can be because that way I can love myself. I can accept and understand whatever I’m being at this moment. I pray today that I love everyone in my life as they are and not as I think they should be. In doing so the people in my life should love me for who I am and whatever I do and don’t know instead of what answer I am supposed to give or not supposed to give. I pray that you have the same opportunities today to do the best you can with the people in your life. I pay that you are able to watch what you’re doing with a sense of impartiality. I’m grateful you’re here. I’m grateful for all the time you’re spent watching my videos. I’m honored you’re here and I hope you have a great day today.