“Life is too short for shoes that clasp your feet, for friends who don’t make you feel well, and for jobs that crush your soul.”Lisa Lewtan
I’m honest – I don’t like saying no at all.
Every time someone asks me a request, my immediate response is usually “YES”: I offer myself instantly to help the other to the best of my ability.
I believe that this is due on the one hand to a genuine desire to lend a hand to those in need and, on the other hand, to the desire not to disappoint others when they have an expectation of me.
Furthermore, a part of me more or less unconsciously believes that saying no to a request can compromise my relationship with others, based on the fear that a refusal could negatively affect the continuation of the relationship.
What does it really mean NOT to say NO
For all the reasons just mentioned, saying yes is probably the easiest answer when someone asks us a question, but if we look closely, it’s not always the best answer.
Just as saying no has its implications, NOT saying no has its relevant consequences.
Every time we say yes to something, we are actually saying no to something else.
Think about it:
When you say yes to something you don’t like, you are saying no to the things you love.
When you say yes to a job you don’t love, you are saying no to your dreams.
When you say yes to a person you don’t like, you are saying no to a deep relationship.
When you say yes to too much work, you are saying no to your social life.
And so on…
If you want to be happy, live a meaningful life and chase your dreams, what you need to do is say yes to everything that allows you to go in this direction and, likewise, say no to everything that does. stand in your way.
Consider the value of your time, start using it for what you really love and for the people you truly care about.
The path along the realization of your most authentic dreams requires you to say many “NO”.
No to jobs that do not satisfy you, no to activities in which you do not believe, no to requests that do not bring any benefit to you or to others, no to negative people, no to what you cannot recognize an authentic meaning.
How to Learn to Say NO
How to do it? Here are some simple tips:
#1 Keep your goals clear
Sometimes we say yes to a request only because we don’t know exactly why we should say no, even though we instinctively feel that that particular activity will not contribute in any way to our well-being or that of those close to us.
This feeling should represent the first alarm bell for you, a clue that probably that certain activity is not in line with your ambitions and your goals.
Your intuition is simply telling you that it would be appropriate to do something else, something that is aimed at making your dreams come true.
Deepen this feeling, try to clarify to yourself what your goals are and what are the activities and requests to which to say yes as they are in line with your dreams.
If you clarify your goals to yourself it will become extremely easy to identify the requests to which to say no.
#2 Understand what it means to say yes
Normally we have a tendency to say yes to many small requests that arrive at the same time from several places.
We say yes because it seems to us that we are not wasting too much time, only 10-15 minutes, 20 at the most, right?
In reality, all these small activities, when added together, generate a considerable amount of time.
There are some people who are able to manage important businesses and at the same time manage to devote themselves to their family, friends and interests.
Other people, on the other hand, have no time for anything other than work, because they are completely absorbed by a series of many small activities and requests that in fact prevent them from dedicating themselves to what is really important to them.
The difference between the two categories of people is that the former are fully aware of what it means to say yes and its implications.
The first category of people knows that in order to live your life to the fullest you need to say no to those activities that are not in line with your values and goals.
You can certainly decide to continue to say yes to every little request that comes from outside, but this means that you will hardly have time to live the life you really dream of.
Whenever someone makes a request to you, then try to think twice before saying yes or no.
Think about what the short and long term implications of an affirmative answer would be.
Time is much more precious than money, because once you have gone money, you may be able to get it back, while time, once gone, is lost forever. Use it for the things you really care about.
#3 Realize that saying no is absolutely fine
Saying no doesn’t mean being selfish, saying no doesn’t mean thinking only about yourself.
On the contrary, saying no to requests means being able to concentrate and dedicate oneself to the utmost on what really is able to create added value, both for us and for others.
Saying no is perfectly acceptable.
Do not think that a negative response to a request puts you in a bad light or that it can anger those who have addressed it to you.
Saying no does not mean being rude if we can explain our reasons clearly and consistently.
If the other person has minimal open-mindedness, they will easily understand that your refusal has nothing personal, but on the contrary, it is based on objective reasons.
You will probably not feel exactly at ease when you have to say the fateful “no”, because at that moment you will feel that you can disappoint or make unhappy whoever made the request.
You may think that he will turn away from you or that your refusal will ruin good relationships.
The truth is that in almost all cases these fears turn out to be unfounded and the other person always knows how to accept a refusal willingly.
The other will certainly appreciate your honesty and your relationship will probably be strengthened.
Saying no is ok, it’s part of the normal flow of life.
Don’t worry about saying no, just worry about doing it in a respectful way.
#4 Do it simply and directly
When you have to say no, don’t complicate your response, make sure your message is clear, simple and direct.
Explain your point of view to the other in a linear way, without venturing into complicated explanations to understand.
Address the issue in its essential terms, going straight to the heart.
There is no need to get lost in details, nor is it appropriate to circumvent the real reason why you are saying no.
Speak from the heart by expressing your thoughts honestly and sincerely, the other party will certainly be able to appreciate your good intentions.
#5 Be respectful
It is the fundamental aspect to keep in mind when addressing others, especially when we are saying no to a request.
Always do it in a polite and calm way, making clear that your refusal is not dictated by personal reasons, but by your need to act in line with your priorities.
Involve the other in your dreams, share your aspirations with him, explain to him with serenity and enthusiasm what your goals are and what activities you intend to dedicate yourself to.
Create an atmosphere of encouragement, trust, and respect, be the architect of a wonderful virtuous circle.