"It is only by saying "No" that you can concentrate on the things that are really important." - Steve Jobs.

As a child we were taught to say yes to anyone asking for help. Rejecting a request would mean you are being rude or unkind. So we learnt it as a basic etiquette to be polite to someone. But as we grew old it became the biggest fear of our adulthood. Disappointing or hurting someone’s' feelings is so difficult that we end up on giving up our own priorities.

Is it really difficult to say 'No'?? It is just a simple word, right?? But why is it so hard??
  • You want to maintain a good relationship because you think that may be saying no to a request would lead to conflict which may affect your relationship with the other person.
  • You genuinely want to offer your help to the other person requesting you, even though it may eat up your time.
  • You are afraid of being rude if you utter a no. So just to sound polite you compromise in your own time.
  • You have a fear if you reject someone in help may be next time he/she will reject you for the same reason. Moreover you may feel you have lost an opportunity.
  • You have a sense of guilt after saying no to someone. You completely blame yourself even though you might feel it was reasonable to say a No.

Read the above points again...

Now think - what makes you compromise in your own time and goals? Why is it that other peoples' opinions are more important to you than your own?

"Live your life for you not for anyone else. Don't let the fear of being judged, rejected or disliked stop you from being yourself". Sonya Parker

Remember, you cannot please everyone every time and saying no doesn't make you less of a kind person. You know what you want, you know your priorities, you know you have set goals, you know you are your own boss, so just make a decision while keeping the below points in your mind:

1.     If your relationship with the person asking for help is genuine, he/she will totally understand and accept your opinion.
2.      If you want to help others, first go through your own agenda for the day. If it is not clashing with your set goals, go ahead and devote your time for the person in need.
3.     Saying no doesn't mean you are being rude. You have your own priorities and it is completely your decision to make a choice between yes or no.
4.     Stop saying Yes just to overcome the fear of rejection. This process will make you more frustrated with yourself.
5.     You shouldn't feel guilty for embracing your priorities. Reject the request politely and do let them know if in near time you could offer your help.

Yes is indeed polite but no is not always discourteous. Don't shy away from saying no, start practicing it. You will feel in control of yourself, fully empowered and confident rather than feeling guilty or dissatisfied. Apparently you will value your own time.

So, challenge yourself by practicing no. Surprisingly you will be doing a favour on yourself. Be mindful of the fact that learning to say NO is a sign of strength and not weakness.

What do you think about this blog post?? I'd love to hear about it in the comments.