Are You Saying No with Confidence?
In my last post I wrote about setting boundaries. In that post there was a point made about saying yes or no, as it serves you. How often do we find that we are unable to say no, so we say yes? Even when no is what we really want to say, and we know that we will feel miserable doing something that we don’t. Saying no is not difficult, it just takes confidence. In my practice I often come across people that struggle to say no. There is a fear wrapped around those two little letters, for such a small word, the impact is enormous. Saying no when you want to is a challenge for some, for others they have mastered it with ease. Many times we find that saying no can be translated into a selfishness, or we worry we will hurt the other person’s feelings. The reality is, we are only hurting ourselves. There are many ways to say no. When carefully thinking things through you can easily utter the word and not worry about the ramifications.
4 Tips for Saying No with Confidence
1. Be gracious. The receiver is asking for a variety of reasons. Be as gentle as you can, provide a reasonable explanation if you can. Never sound harsh. Offer the excuse for no, if it is valid. Not wanting to do something asked of you can be precarious, make sure you don’t upset the apple cart when it comes to friendship.
2. Leave the guilt behind. Saying no doesn’t have to make you feel guilty. Examine why you are saying no, is it in your best interest? Remember you can’t say yes to everything. We all want to help family and friends when we can, but we can’t do it all. Don’t ignore your needs by saying yes, especially if you already had a prior commitment.
3. Don’t wait until it’s too late. Many times we become so annoyed with a friend or loved one that by the time they ask a favor, we lash out our no and create a bigger problem. If you know you are not going to be able to accommodate the request, don’t mull it over anyway, just say no.
4. If you can’t say no, figure out why. Sometimes we become “yes” people because we are to afraid to say no. We make our minds that family will be upset with us, our friends will withhold their friendship from us, it doesn’t matter the reason. Find the confidence to stand up for yourself. Lifehack.org has a great article on saying no and the ramifications it causes us. Click here to read it.
It Isn’t Easy, But It Is Gratifying
Saying no with confidence is one of the best things you can do for yourself. Learning to say no with grace and compassion will go a long way to creating boundaries with family and friends. You don’t have to say yes to everything. Keep in mind that if you do, you are setting yourself up for difficulty in saying no when the time comes. Allow yourself to do what is best for you. Sometimes saying no is can be a valuable tool in self love and growth. Next time someone asks you to do something you really don’t want to do, say no, and say it with confidence. Then congratulate yourself on a job well done.