Dear Yes Club,

I am writing to cancel my membership. I realize this may come as a shock to you--especially with no notice whatsoever and since I've been such a longtime, card-carrying member--but I really must insist. This "yes" thing is just not working for me anymore.

At first it felt great. I love to please and there are few more pleasing things people like to hear than "yes" to their requests. Will I help with this school activity? Yes! Will I launch an evaluation of a pilot program in Boston Public Schools, committing to visit different schools in my free time? Yes! Will I attend a training conference for three full days in a row, juggling home and school obligations in between? Yes! Will I give a presentation for the leaders of a tri-state children's organization? Yes, yes, yes...sign me up! If all of these fall on the same week, so much the better...think of all those people who are pleased with my yeses.

My indiscriminate yeses have created a schedule that runs me instead of the other way around. I'm spending time on things I don't really care about at the expense of those that mean the world to me.

So, yes yahoos, I have been recruited by a new group and their pitch was very persuasive. More margins to my day. More time to have relaxed conversations with my friends and family, time to remember birthdays and notice the clouds and think about what to make for dinner and read for pleasure. Time to read the paper in the morning and walk the kids to school and take deep breaths because they feel good, not because I'm warding off panic. I'd like to give that a try.

In case you're wondering, I've joined the Sensible Response club. Apparently, I'm in the apprentice phase of my new membership, the "let me think about it" level. But I'm hoping to practice and advance quickly to the elite level, to earn the key to the "no thank you" washroom.

Yours in sanity and calmness,