How Learning to Not Give a F**K Changed My Life


I’m going to warn you upfront, that there will be a few expletives in here. If that offends you I understand and you have every right to not read. Hopefully, I’ll see you next time!

A few weeks ago I listened to a book, a bit of a parody, but also quite serious, called “The Life-Changing Magic of Not Giving a Fuck.” Yes, this book is tweaking that best-seller, “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up,” a book too crazy for even neat-nick me. Seriously, Marie Kondo needs to chill the heck out. This is the video that opened my eyes to the concept of not giving a f**k. Watch and be transformed.

Saying “no” has always been hard for me. I’m a pleaser. I have a hard time speaking up and asking for what I want. It’s really, really hard for me. But, I have been getting better at it. Especially now that I have the words ringing in my head, “Is this something I give a f**k about?” If the answer is no, I don’t do it. Easy peasy. Well...not necessarily. But It’s getting easier with each no.

Between you and me, it’s just us here, right?  I know I can be pretty driven, and somewhat compulsive. About work, about exercise, about trying to always look and be my best.

My life is a big, messy, eclectic assortment of jobs, volunteering, my own writing, (a big priority) exercise and yoga. And of course, time with loved ones.

One of the many things I do is twice a month is I host a radio show called “Arts Week” on a public radio station at the far end of the Cape, WOMR. I said yes to this close to two years ago because I love talking with creative people, and wanted to learn a new skill. I was further enticed when the producer said we could record at my home, saving me the 45 minute drive each way to Provincetown. That works out perfectly...except for my super-neat ways.

Most weeks I clean my home the day before the guests are coming, leaving me time to go to yoga class, do some last minute straightening up and showering before they come. Yesterday I didn’t have that time due to slovenly heat-induced behavior the day before. I knew it was going to be a stretch to do everything I felt I needed to do, so I did something unheard of for me. I skipped yoga. And you know what? The world didn’t end.

In actuality, instead of being harried and stressed, I sat down (after having a lovely breakfast and meditating) to start writing this very post. What a concept! Take something off that overflowing plate and voila! Life gets easier.

I tend to get on this treadmill (literally and figuratively) and it’s hard to get off. Then I find I’m grouchy, anxious and just absolutely no fun to be around. Trust me. It’s not fun at all. Even for me - patient zero of the bad mood.

What we need to remember is that when we say no to that thing we don’t give a f**k about, we’re not only saying yes to ourselves, but we’re creating a ripple effect of happiness and good mood. When I am not stressed or feeling put upon I am an absolute dream! Okay, maybe that’s stretching it, but I am much more pleasant to be around.

And yes, I know there are things we all HAVE to do, and that’s exactly why saying no to the things that we don’t is so vital. We need to feel we are masters of our own time and destiny. By learning to say no to what doesn’t matter so much to you, you get to say yes to what does.

Now pardon me as I go spend time with my beau, because that, dear people, I do give a f**k about.