Many of us go through life trying hard not to offend anyone and never really learning how to say the word “no.”

It can be difficult to know how to stand up for yourself without offending anyone or feeling guilty. It’s something that can be learned, though.

Check out these tips to make setting boundaries and standing up for yourself easier.

Learn How to Stand Up For Yourself By Realizing It’s Okay to Say “No”

You can’t please everyone all the time and there’s no sense running yourself ragged trying. Life is stressful and there’s only so much time in the day and energy in your tank.

We all have a million things demanding our attention in life from children to aging parents, from career to your relationship — the to-do list is never-ending.

You have to realize it’s okay to say “no” because if you don’t take care of your needs you won’t have anything left to give.

Everyone has to learn you can’t do it all. You don’t have to explain to anyone but yourself when you decide what you’re capable of adding to your plate and what you’re not.

Figure Out Why You Do What You Do

What are your motives and why do you do what you do?

You can save yourself a lot of stress and anxiety by figuring out what you’re getting out of being a people pleaser.

You don’t have to agree with someone else’s opinion or loan them money because there are generators for sale and they don’t have the cash to buy one. If you’re direct and doing what’s right for you, you don’t owe anyone an explanation or an apology for saying “no.”

You’re allowed to be you and it’s okay to take care of yourself.

Identify Your Priorities and What Matters Most

Once you identify what your priorities are and what really matters most to you it will be easier to spend your time and energy on the right things and for the right people.

You set your own goals, have dreams, responsibilities, and people who depend on you. It’s important that you remember that your feelings and needs in life deserve as much attention and respect as anyone else’s.

Practice, Practice, Practice

Now that you’ve identified what you need to spend your energy on it’s time to practice saying no or standing up for yourself when someone disrespects you or your needs.

It’s not easy to communicate what you need or how you feel but the more you do it the more natural it will become. It will also make setting boundaries in the future less of a problem as those around you start to understand and respect the ones you’ve expressed.

Take Responsibility, Don’t Live in Shame

Sometimes things don’t work out as expected and plans change.

You may have offered to drive a friend to an appointment but your daughter is having trouble settling into student accommodations at college so you have to take an emergency trip out of town.

There’s no reason to beat yourself up for not being able to do everything. Let them know you won’t be able to help them so they can find an alternative ride but don’t let them make you feel guilty for being a mom.

Communication Is Key

The best way to spare everyone’s feelings and avoid stress is to communicate your needs and be direct about what you can and can’t do.

Now that you’ve learned how to stand up for yourself check out how to bring personality to your living space.