NO is a Healthy Good Answer
It is difficult for me to say no to people. At one time, I said Yes to a salesperson to come to my house and finally purchasing a $1,200 vacuum cleaner and its accessories. I said Yes to a son of family friend to sell me financial packages that does not address my current needs and I eventually closed the accounts. I said Yes to another friend who sold me insurance. I said Yes to an invite in a timeshare presentation, and purchased a unit. I said Yes to service work when everyone else does not want to volunteer. In my career, I said yes to many tasks and requests from managers that eventually propelled their careers. I even said yes to other managers for some other requests and when they are missing people in their group. Maybe they called me a good worker, and team player then wrote me a good annual review but now I realized that work during the weekends and late nights were not worth it.
Everyone demands your time, talent, and treasure. I mean everyone, and that includes your work, school, community, family, and friends. If you’re living your life for other people, according to Christine Carter, Ph.D. is a Senior Fellow at the Greater Good Science Center at the University of California, Berkeley, for example, “you’re a people pleaser who can’t say no when someone invites you to an event, you’re end up feeling resentful.”
Resentful? Yes... but it’s not too late to learn to say no and change.
There is a whole health science affecting your heart and blood pressure including your immune system, and nervous system when you are overwhelmed with schedule and requests that your mind and body tries to overcome. Overtime being over work and over stressed will lead to health problems such as heart attack, insomnia, and weak immune system.
Christine 3-step Plan on how to say no.
1. Prepare yourself to say NO.
It’s easier to say no when you have a clear reason. Don’t lie or make up excuses because it will send a bad signal that saying NO is wrong when it’s really a healthy good answer.
By having a calendar to look at your schedule, and budget on your resources, you would be able to set boundaries of what you can give and do.
If time and resources are available, evaluate before saying Yes with these important questions:
- Do I want to do this thing, or is it that I feel I “should”?
- Will saying “yes” bring me joy or meaning?
- Will I feel dread or regret when this particular event or task rolls around?
A happy “yes” will uplift your spirit by helping others.
2. Say No
No one wants to disappoint someone, and it takes courage to say no. Be both kind and firm. Be vague and don’t give specifics but be honest.
Here are some suggestions:
- Thank you for asking, but that isn’t going to work out for me.
- Thank you so much for your enthusiasm and support! I’m sorry I’m not able to help you at this time.
- Thanks, I’ll have to pass on that.
- I really appreciate you asking me, but my time is already committed.
- None of those dates work for me.
- I can see this is important to you but I have to say no.
- I’m sorry, I’m maxed out.
If someone won’t take no for an answer:
- Stick with the No answer.
- Say nothing. It feels rude to ignore, but sometimes it’s the best way.
- If he/she is a friend or family, tell him/her about your feeling being uncomfortable.
3. Don’t look back
Do not regret or feel guilty after turning down an offer.
Make an effort to focus on the good that will come from saying no.
Think about more time to spend with your spouse and children.
Think about more time to sharpen your skills.
Think about giving yourself the time to re-energize your mind, body, and spirit.
By saying No, next time you say Yes, you are so ready.