Learn to Say No

say-noDo you ever feel like you are stretched too thin? Any time someone asks you, either personally or professionally, you just can’t seem to say no. You feel obligated to help those who ask or agree to take more on even though you are already at capacity. There comes a point in your life where you have to learn to say NO.

It is not a bad trait to want to help others, but you cannot sacrifice yourself in the meantime. At some point, self-preservation must kick in. This does not mean you are giving up helping others completely, but you have to practice self-awareness and determine when you are at max capacity.

When determining whether or not to help, its important to assess who you are helping. Is that person in your circle of influence? Your circle of influence are the people you spend the most time with. These people help to shape who you are and will be supportive and help you meet your goals. If the person asking for help isn’t in your circle of influence and they ask for help every so often, I think its safe to say they should probably find a way to do it on their own. One of the hardest things about saying “no” to people is to watch them struggle. Unfortunately, you learn the most from the toughest struggles. Sometime a little tough love is exactly what people need.

If you have a hard time saying no to the people you spend the most time with, I assume you are also everyone’s go to in the workplace. You’re the person that people can count on when they are in a pinch and have a deadline to meet. You’ll stay late and put in the extra hours to make sure the project is done. While it has likely gotten you some where in your career, are you really happy or healthy?

Why You Should Say No:

  • Take control of your own life
    If you say yes to every favor people ask, you will never spend time doing the things that you want to do. When you say “no” for whatever reason, you are essentially communicating you are in the driver’s seat of your own life. Choose YOU!
  • Set Boundaries
    Because of who you are, you are still going to help people and that’s okay! Make sure to set boundaries. Boundaries are healthy and serve a critical part of your self-preservation.
  • You can be anything, but you can’t be everything
    You can create your life and choose to be anything you want to be. What you cannot be is everything to everyone.
  • The best lessons are learned through failure
    Although it might be hard to watch someone you care about struggle, sometimes you have to let them fall in order to learn. If you are always a safety net for people, they will continue to be reliant on you. Sometimes you have to let them learn to put their hands out and catch themselves.
  • Saying NO will empower you
    Learn to take a stance and people will respect that. You will feel empowered by your choice and start to live by your values.
  • Efficiency Can Kill Creativity
    Create time and space to promote creativity in your efficient world. Through creativity you will continue to learn and grow as a person.

By saying no you are creating more personal time and space for yourself. With this time and space you have the opportunity to develop a sense of self compassion and lead a healthier lifestyle. Don’t build on the already stressful lifestyle as it will result in additional stress and eventually burnout. The world we live in is already high stress. Don’t carry the weight of other people’s stresses on your shoulders. Provide yourself the space to love yourself so you can love others.

Do you have any tips for learning how to say “no”? Comment below!

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