The Art of Saying No
We all need to say no more often. In my mind, over-scheduling in one of my seven deadly sins.
Do you remember when we were in our 20’s, we’d double deck our evenings. There was an early date… and then midnight plans with more friends. Where did we ever get the energy?
Do you commit to something even when you know you don’t have the time. Cramming it in will absolutely stress you out. But you do it anyway.
How do we say no?
Start by understanding that “No” is a complete sentence. You don’t alway have to give a reason after you say the word. “No, I’m sorry. I can’t do it” will suffice. There’s a guy at my gym who says “I’m not able.” He doesn’t like the word “cant.”
If you are a people pleaser, saying “no” is like emotional quicksand. But are you saying “yes” so often that you feel stressed, lose sleep and not handle your own responsibilites in an effort to help out in other ways?
Here are some of my favorite ways to say no:
1. “I’m sorry I’m busy.” No need to provide a laundry list of excuses
2. “It’s just not a good time for me.” No further explanation required
3. “I’d be happy to help but . . . “ Also – “I wish I could but, see #1 and #2
4. “Can I get back to you?” In case you really don’t know your schedule. Don’t leave them hanging. Give yourself a deadline.
5. Just say No. “No, I can’t.” “No, I’m not able.” Nothing more needs to be said.
When you start saying no to others, you can start saying yes to yourself.
Let me know how this works for you.
Need more ways to find calm amid everyday chaos?
Jim Brickman’s Soothe has ideas and music to help you de-stress.