Calling all people pleasers! Do you have difficulty saying “no”? Are you trying to be nice to everyone at the expense of yourself?
People pleaser’s all over the world struggle with using that two letter word, ‘no.’
I used to be that way. I’d go out of my way to help anyone who asked for it only to be left drained, with little energy left to do what I needed to get done.
Over time, I’ve learned there is real personal power in saying “no” and not always doing what others ask of you.
How You Can Learn To Say No
There’re so many reasons we find it hard to say “no.” More often than not we don’t want to appear rude. We want to appear helpful so we say ‘yes’ and of course, we want folks to like us and we mistakenly believe saying yes all the time will make that happen.
Whatever the reason, what you don’t realize is that these are just misconceptions. Just because you say “no” doesn’t mean you’re rude, unhelpful or unlikeable.
The reality is you’re overworked, stressed out and at your wit’s end.
The requests of your personal time pour in faster than you can keep up.
Your family demands your time, your job and coworkers require your time and if you are an entrepreneur, well you understand the needs all too well.
The secret to getting rid of the feelings of overwhelm and dread is to learn to say ‘no’ to new commitments and to stop feeling guilty about it.
Here are my best tips for learning how to make that happen!
Tip #1: Be Polite and Firm
There is no reason to be a bitch about it.
A simple, “I’m sorry I can’t do this right now” is perfect.
You don’t need to be overly apologetic or defensive which is typically what newbie “No-ers” do.
You vacillate between feeling sorry you have to say no, to feeling angry someone else is infringing on your life.
Once you start learning to say no, you will reduce the stress and the burden of always being put upon. Remember, you teach people how you want to be treated.
Standing firm and saying no is a way to show others you’re not at everyone’s beck and call.
Tip #2: Don’t Justify Your Answer
People who are always asking of you will more than likely require an explanation for why you can’t help them.
You don’t owe them an explanation, and you should refrain from giving them one.
Recently, I was asked to be a speaker at an event. I looked over my business plan for the year and knew that it didn’t fit with my overall marketing plan. I graciously thanked the person who asked me to speak and declined. I didn’t justify the ‘no’ in any way, shape or form…and you don’t need to either.
A simple, “It doesn’t fit into my schedule” is an absolutely acceptable response.
If they push for a reason, just repeat, “It doesn’t fit into my schedule.” If they keep pushing walk away if you have too – they’ll get the message.
Tip #3: You Can Think About It
You might be uncomfortable with the idea of saying no immediately. If you want time to review your schedule, or reflect on whether this is something you want to do just say, “I need to check my schedule; I’ll get back to you.”
Remember you need to close the loop and get back to the person as soon as possible. If you must decline in an email, that’s ok.
Most importantly, this tactic helps you avoid letting yourself be pressured into over scheduling your life and taking on too much stress.
Tip #4: Remember To Take Time For You
There are only so many hours in the day. This means whatever you choose to take on limits your ability to do other things.
So even if you somehow can fit a new commitment into your schedule, if it’s not more important than what you would’ve had to give up to do it (including time for relaxation and self-care), then you really don’t have the time in your schedule.
[tweetthis]Taking time for yourself is the most important aspect of learning to say no.[/tweetthis]
When you give yourself the space to stand in control of your life and say no, you’re giving yourself the best gift of all.
Learning to say no doesn’t have to be difficult if you use these simple, but effective strategies. Try them today and let me know how they work for you.