Do you remember a situation, when you said yes to your boss’s request, despite feeling overloaded with your own tasks and your agenda was fully booked, while he was browsing on Facebook or playing with his new mobile phone?
Saying ‘No’ after receiving a request from people is one of the most challenging situations to cope with. You might feel pressured to say ‘yes’, because you do not want to disappoint or hurt someone else’s feelings, or lack courage to express your own opinion, or simply do not want to provoke a conflict.
However, it is important to learn to say ‘No’, so you can take control of your agenda and have time to spend on things that matter to you. It is also vital for your life-management and well-being.
Here are 6 tips on how to say ‘No’ without guilt:
1.) Don’t over explain – keep your explanation short and simple.
2.) Be Honest – Say ‘No’ if you don’t want to do things and don’t lie about the reasons for saying ‘No’. It is better to say ‘No’ now than disappoint the other person later when you fail to fulfill the request by saying ‘Yes’.
3.) State your position without justifying – don’t apologize. It’s your right to say ‘No’!
4.) Stick to what you’ve decided – If you say ‘No’, stick to your decision. If the other person persists, repeat your reply, without getting irritated, loud or angry.
5.) Be assertive with your answer – communicate your answer in a clear, direct, and non-offensive way, while considering the feelings and rights of others. Take a moment and identify situations or people when you struggled to express your own opinions or said ‘Yes’, despite your inner voice screaming ‘No’.
6.) Respect Yourself – Be aware of your own needs. When coping with a challenging conversation, ask yourself:
Is there something making me uncomfortable?What part of this request is OK for me, and what part is not? Does the other person’s request consider my agenda, my needs, and my feelings? Will saying ‘Yes’ will hurt me or anyone else?
No matter what people think about your decision, be strong enough to express your opinion, feelings, and needs!
Always set your priorities first and spend your time doing things that matter to you!