I find that a lot of women think that they cannot just say no to others. Many of us are concerned about hurting a person's feelings or ruining a relationship. We don't want to disappoint others. We don't want to fail. We are afraid of their reaction when we just say no. We don't want to be rejected. We are afraid of being criticized or judged when we just say no.
When we have the right tool for the job, we find it easier because we do not have to think about how to phrase things just right. Following are a few simple, practical solutions:
- The Not No, But Not Yes No: “Let me think about it, and I will get back to you.”
- The Plain and Simple No: “Thanks, I will have to pass on that.” (Say it, then say nothing more.)
- The Amiable No: “I appreciate you asking me; however, my time is already committed.”
- The Apologetic No: “ I wish I could; however it is just not going to work for me right now.”
- The It’s Not My Decision No: “I promised my therapist that I would not take on any more projects right now. I am working on creating more balance in my life.”
- The Family Excuse No: “Thanks so much for the invitation but that is the day of my son’s soccer game, and I never miss those.”
- The Recommend Someone Else No: “I just simply do not have the time right now. Let me recommend someone who may be able to help you.”
- The I’m Already Comitted No: “I appreciate that you thought of me, but I’m afraid I am already booked that day.”
- The Set Boundaries No: “Let me tell you what I can do …” Then limit your commitment to what will be comfortable for you.
What do you think of those solutions?
Lastly, following are four tips that may help you to effectively manage your energy:
- Become comfortable and proficient at saying "no". Start prracticing it.
- Ask for help and ask frequently.
- Challenge your “shoulds” whenever they surface in your mind.
- Give yourself permission to change your mind at any time! It is your perogative.