Say no, by Ana Polo


I open the ‘mail’. Good news! I have a proposal from EL PERIÓDICO. They want me to have one biweekly column. How cool, I think! And instantly, an intrusive thought: am I not already doing a lot of things? Do I always have to say yes to everything? The more jobs the better, right? This is what everyone tells me: “You’re on top, Ana. I see you everywhere!”. in the world of communication overexposure is rewarded. And congratulations after congratulations, a Damocles Sword-shaped mantra takes root in our brainiacs: If I don’t work in enough places, they’ll forget about me. If they don’t see me, I don’t exist.

I’m not quite sure that being everywhere is necessarily a good thing. First, because it is almost impossible to find the ideal number of jobs; the balance between the security of knowing that others have you in mind and the panic that they will get tired of you, if you go too far. Second, because if you are everywhere, when are you with you? When do you do the things that make you feel good but maybe don’t shine as bright? Can I sustain my life based on external validation? Putting on washing machines, going to the market or cooking a broth are things that do not accumulate so much social capital, but they are necessary to take care of ourselves. Life is this too. I am not just my job.

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It was hard for me to decide. We are programmed to be approval junkies and this paralyzes us when setting limits. It’s not easy to say no. But I’ve been learning for a while now. Because I have been able to verify that a ‘no’ outside is always a ‘yes’ inside, a ‘yes’ to myself.

Finally, I have decided to accept. Monthly column, yes. I also don’t have many opinions. And when I have them, perhaps they already coincide with those of another and with a retweet, mental or verbal, I have enough. I think it’s not bad that this space is held by someone like me. It was not the case that, who knows, they ended up giving the column to another wealthy and privileged gentleman who, hearing himself talk so much, ends up pissing out of the pot and saying things like Rigoberta Bandini’s boobs are his (@jordibaste) .


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