One thing that has been heavy on my heart to work on this year, is making my “No’s” strong so that my “Yes” can be stronger.  Many times we say yes to, friends, work, church, projects, engagements etc. out of obligation, sometimes out of fear.  No one ever wants to let another person down or be a disappointment.  But what I have found recently, is that out of saying “yes” in hopes to not disappoint, I end up either over extending myself, or not being present and available for something much more forefront and important in my life, such as my children and spouse.   A friend of mine sent this passage to me this past week by Jen Hatmaker and boy did it home.

“As you move into 2016 hoping for a saner schedule that prioritizes your actual life and keeps you focused on the things that matter the most, let me share the decision-making filter my agent Curtis always gives me:
“If it’s not a HELL YES, then it’s a no.”
So that medium yes, that I-feel-like-should yes, that guilty yes, that coerced yes, that I-actually-hate-this-thing yes, that I-guess-so yes, that who-else-will-do-it yes, that careless yes, that default yes, that resentful yes, that I-probably-shouldn’t-but-struggle-with-boundaries yes?
NO. Nope.
No thank you. I am unable to commit to that this year. Thank you so much for asking, but any new yes I give right now means a no to my family and sanity. I am so flattered you asked and count on my prayers, but I am at my maximum bandwidth right now. I appreciate your work so much, but I’ve already committed my time and energy this year. I’ve loved being a part of this, but I am no longer able to continue. We are aggressively focused on x, y, and z this year, so as a family we’ve agreed on no new commitments. This is what I can give but won’t be able to do more right now.
Now, the things that makes your heart race, your blood pump, the fire in your belly burn, your gifts to leap to life, and keep your family and home healthy and strong…the hell yeses? ALL IN, BABY.”
I read that and thought, dang.  I may be disappointing a few people this year, but the things that make my blood pump and heart race will get 100% from me when I can. It is hard saying no, but I do believe as we discover more of who we are and what we are meant to do, the “No’s” will become easier, people will understand what we are about and that “YES” will mean 150% of effort on our parts.  Please note that the formula above is not a here all end all.  Somethings we say yes to that we don’t want to do, but we know we are supposed to.  Or sometimes God asks us to do things that don’t make our heart race and belly burn.  But the decision making filter above is a good way to prioritize and focus on the right things laid out before us.  Just some food for thought for the  new year and something I will be trying desperately to go after… that firm “No” so my “YES” can be all in.  I hope this makes sense.
Now on to things “fashion!” I found this little grey dress at She In Official online.  Not only was this dress less than 20.00 but it is the most comfortable, and cute piece to pair with just about any shoe! I love how I feel in just about anything off the shoulder! It gives this sexy/ yet sophisticated look and feel.  I had to pair this dress with these OTK boots because, lets be honest, I can’t take them off.  They are my absolute favorite pair of boots this season.  Also, a steal for less thatn 90.00 at DSW! Go get your pair.  I hope you all had a great weekend and have an exciting week ahead! For me, just lots of work, although, I am headed to SF for the weekend, just Ben and I and I cannot wait! Thank you so much for stopping by the blog!
Lots of love,
Ruthie xo

 

grey dress- pom pom
grey dress- accessories
black hat- grey dress  Grey dress- half wigs
grey dress- over the knee boots  grey dress- silver rings
grey dress- red lipstick  grey dress- cross body bag

Grey dress- red nail polish
grey dress- silver jewlery

All images by: Sarah Schweyer Photography
Dress: She In

OTK boots: DSW

Bag + Pom Pom: DSW

Hat: Target

  • Comments ( 50 )

  • avatar
    heather

    Looking amazing Ruthie! I love that gray dress and how you styled it for every day – so functional, comfy and chic! Now, about this goal of yours to say no more – I LOVE this and wow are we really on the same page – I also included this in a recent goals post <3! So hard to do, but I absolutely love how you have framed it here. You are so right, when we say yes to too much and spread ourselves too thin, we tend to come up short in areas that really matter – and often no one wins. Great post my friend!
    XO,
    Heather
    alittlecasual.com

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      Thank you my sweet Heather!! I am so glad I am not alone!! We will get better at this!! Much love, Ruthie xo

  • avatar
    danikqwa

    This was just what I needed to read! This idea has been rolling around in my thoughts a lot and what you said about the “medium yes” is exactly what I needed read! You look gorgeous as always πŸ™‚ Thank you for sharing Ruthie!

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      Thank you sweet Danikqwa, I am glad I am not alone in this!! xo

  • avatar
    Samantha

    Great post Ruthie! I’m really loving your thoughts on this one (I am also loving that dress…very cute look). Thanks for sharing!

    Xoxo Samantha

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      Thank you sweet Samantha!! I hope that school is treating you well so far!! xo

  • avatar
    Annie

    I was listening to a Tim Ferriss podcast and his guest, Derek Sivers, was saying how he usually say No to everything. The only time that he says yes is if it’s a “fuck yes” It’s so funny how somehow we are ALWAYS on the same page! We really are soul sisters.
    xo Annie
    http://collectivepassions.com

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      Oh my goodness this made my day!! Love that we are on the same page!!xo

  • avatar
    Kait Elizabeth

    This dress looks amazing on you, and I love how you styled it. Also, so well written and very very true! Hugs, Kait
    http://makeminemaroon.com/

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      Thank you sweet Kait, I hope you are having a fantastic week! Much love xo

  • avatar
    valerie hansen

    This was a great thought provoking post…I am here…saying yes to many things on line…webinars…groups etc and getting over extended..thanks for the reminder…your dress is just so cute and looks great on you!!

    Valerie
    Blessings in the New Year
    Fashion And Travel

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      hahaa! Yes Valerie I can totally relate! Thank you so much!! xo

  • avatar
    songbirdechoes

    Great post Ruthie! Totally agree with you here <3

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      Thank you Gunjan xo

  • avatar
    Terry

    This is a challenge I have faced all my life and still have not learnt my lesson yet.

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      It is never too late my sweet mama xo

  • avatar
    Vet Leow

    Looking good and nice minimalist dress Ruthie! Thanks for the timely reminder of focusing on our priorities…:)

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      Thank you Vet!! Hope you are having a good week! xo

  • avatar
    Allison Jones

    Not over extending myself is definitely something I’m working on this year! We have to be a little picky so that we can give the things that we DO decide to do our best. I love your dress! I’m a big fan of off the shoulder tops and dresses and this one is super cute.

    LiveLifeWell,
    Allison

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      I absolutely agree!!! I am hoping to get better at saying no this year!! Thank you so much Allison!! xo

  • avatar
    raysastyle

    Beautiful! Love your makeup.
    Xo, Raysa

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      Thank you beautiful Raysa!!! xo

  • avatar
    racheljanelloyd

    Girl, you are stunning!! I’m new to your blog, but I can’t wait to follow along!

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      Thank you so much Rachel!! That means so much!!

  • avatar
    Mar

    Love that dress! I think people forget that shoulders can be so sexy! Great post!

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      I know, it can be a risk but I took it!! Thank you so much!!

  • avatar
    Claire

    You are so gorgeous! I LOVE LOVE LOVE that dress!

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      Oh my goodness, you are so kind!!! Thank you!! xo

  • avatar
    stopdropandvogue

    I am seriously not good at telling people no, and recently my ability was put to the test and I prevailed. I wouldn’t say I’ma pushover, I just don’t want to hurt feelings. Loved this post and your dress!
    http://stopdropandvogue.com/

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      I am not either! I am so glad you prevailed I feel it is a test every single time!! Thanks for reading my dear!!

  • avatar
    tiarasandsequins

    First tou look fantastic, pretty dress! Second your post is on point and something I need to start practicing. Thank you for sharing

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      Thank you gorgeous!! xo

  • avatar
    Mariam (The Petite Bijou)

    Ruthie,

    What a great post! This is something that resonates deeply within me because through my own journey I have had to learn how to say “No” to the things that didn’t excite me, didn’t serve a purpose, or something that would take away from my time with my family and myself. Learning how to say no is the hardest thing, because we think others will think bad of us – when really, I think they’ll appreciate us even more. I’ve had to say no to jobs that were not worth my time and investment. I’ve had to say no to blogging opportunities so I could focus on myself. And I’ve had to say to myself sometimes –
    “No, Mariam, don’t give up!”

    Thank you for writing this and I have to say I love everything about this outfit! You are so lucky it’s so warm over there where you can wear dresses outside without layers and layers of jackets!! So gorgeous!

    Love, Mariam
    http://www.thepetitebijou.com

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      Mariam, I am so glad that you can relate. Your words gave me fuel and even more drive in the direction of saying “YES” to the right things. I think it is so important as adults to know what we want and to stay focused on those things!! Thank you so much for reading and sharing!! xo

  • avatar
    Janna Doan

    ruthie–i COULDN’T AGREE MORE with this entire post. (and outfit of course). the part. β€œIf it’s not a HELL YES, then it’s a no.” got me rolling but so true girl. when we say yes to everything we are also saying no to a lot of other things!! thanks so much for sharing, i kept nodding my head throughout! xoxo,

    janna | http://www.jannadoan.com

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      Janna, I so value your input!! Thank you for reading and sharing!! I adore your heart!! xo

  • avatar
    jenny Ostenson Photography

    You look like a doll! The hat, boots, and even the pom pom addition to your purse….so cute!

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      Blushing!! Thank you Jenny!!

  • avatar
    blushandbubbly

    You are an inspiration, Ruthie! I always love reading your posts and you look simply gorgeous. xoxo – Chelsea

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      Omg, Chelsea you always say the kindest things!! Thank you my dear!! xo

  • avatar
    Jen Frick

    This post was SO inspiring and just what I needed to get 2016 rolling! I have been picky about certain collabs, hoping for a “quality over quantity” mindset and this confirms that I know I’m doing the right thing for myself! Cheers to all the HELL YES’ in 2016!! Thank you so much for sharing, Ruthie! And of course, you look absolutely stunning!!! Can’t believe that dress is only $20.00 – you are killing it!!! Love anything off-the-shoulder!! πŸ™‚

    Jen | http://www.lettersandpearls.com

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      Me too girl!! OMG I am in the SAME Boat and No’s are not easy my dear!! But we can do this!! Quality all day girl!! xo

  • avatar
    Toby

    I am in love with that fur pom pom! i got one myself and it instanty completes everything!
    great look! xo toby

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      Gahh!! I love the pom poms! Just cant get enough!! Thx love!! xo

  • avatar
    worldwidestylista

    I loved reading this post! Your words are always so inspiring! Also, I adore this entire outfit. Especially the pom!

    xoxo Ciera

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      Ciera, thank you so much!! That means the world to me!!! xo

  • avatar
    Bianca

    All of your outfit post have got to be my favorites. Love love!!!

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      You are so SWEET!! Thank you so much!! xo

  • avatar
    thestylegem

    Looking gorgeous and hun I don’t know how you manage to squeeze everything in. Juggling everything is always a challenge and from what I can see you are doing fab.

    Sovanny x
    https://thestylegem.wordpress.com

    • avatar
      ruthieridley

      You are so kind Sovanny! I feel the same way about you!! Love everysingle thing that you post!!!

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