Tips and stories to add value to you and your organisation
No, no, no, no!
Small children say this with ease and yet as adults we can stuggle with such a small word. Social conditioning means that we often tend to be polite and feel that ‘no’ could be interpreted as rude or unfriendly. We say ‘we could…’ or ‘of course…’ when what we really mean is ‘no way, I’m far too busy, sort it yourself!’
Saying no is a skill that we instinctively have as children and we can choose to relearn as adults. The word ‘no’ protects us from doing things that soak up our time with little benefit to us and so without it we can get a bit stuck.
A smart way to say no and still feel and sound polite is to go for:
Not at this time
Not in this way
These imply we would like to help, but lack the resources at that precise moment. Since most requests are time based, this encourages the other party to feel valued and gently nudges them to sort themselves out. Simple.
We all have permission to say no. We can put our needs first and assert ourselves. We matter!
Next week: Change before you’re forced to
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