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I’m learning to say no

Published on September 23rd, 2013

cailee no mainSaying no is a hard thing…for me.  I would rather just say yes to people…to opportunities…to causes.  Unfortunately, saying yes to every person or every opportunity, or every cause leads to an unsustainable schedule.  But, I do not like saying no.  Perhaps that is driven by a desire to not disappoint people.  Perhaps that is driven by an interest in achieving.  I’m not sure.  I just know it is hard to say no.  I read something recently from Fast Company that’s helping me.  It is a subtle thing, but it works.  I came across an article on the difference in saying “I don’t” and “I can’t” when giving a no response.  “I don’t” is viewed as more empowering for the individual.  It communicates that I made a choice to not do something based on my best understanding of my own schedule and time demands.  It communicates more intentional thought.  “I can’t” can be a bit more draining as it indicates more of a restriction that others have placed on you.

I could be over-thinking all of this…but it has helped.  You can read the full article here.  Let me know what you think.  How easy or difficult is it for you to say no?


4 Responses

  1. Jean Mitchell

    I think that you have to do what you think is best for you and your family. If saying “no” lets you have more time with the family, then people just have to understand. Don’t feel guilty…..hoping that people understand that you are only ONE person that can only do so much.

  2. S Kelly

    Learning to say “no” has been a life-changing lesson for me! What helps me clarify when to say no and gives me the assurance to stick to it is to focus on what I’m saying “yes” to…saying no lets me say yes to really great things. It helps me when I focus on the “yeses” even while saying “no.”

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