How to start saying NO to others

Are you someone who struggles to say no to others?  You’re certainly not alone! There was a time when I used to quickly say yes to pretty much everyone and everything! Even if it was something I didn’t want to do. I somehow felt by saying no I would be letting someone down, or worse, I’d miss out on something!

When we say yes to something that we really don’t want to do, we may be acting because we fear something. Fear that someone will judge us, react badly towards us, or may no longer like us. There may be a number of different reasons why we may not be willing to say no.

So consider these points:

Firstly, what happens to us when we say yes out of the fear of something happening?  We may become resentful, angry, stressed, overwhelmed, or exhausted from always stretching ourselves too thinly and not putting ourselves first for a change.

Secondly, how might saying yes affect the other person? Are we empowering them to do it for themselves, and do we trust that they can do it alone? It may be that we are denying them the learning from trying something new. Or perhaps we are just not the right person to help them in the first place.

I believe it is possible to SAY NO to someone with kindness, knowing you are doing it in your own best interests and also in the interests of the person you are saying no to!

Start with this one simple question to yourself before saying yes or no to something:

“Do I really want to do this?” 
If the answer is NO then ask yourself:
“How will saying yes truly help the other person?”

When I ask myself this question I give myself the permission, and the strength, to say no. As a result I’m happier, more fulfilled and still saying yes to loads of things.  But I’m only saying yes to the things I love doing!!

As we start to help others from a place of willingness, commitment and joy, we can instead be assured that we are doing so in the best interests of everyone involved. I can be sure I’m happy and so are the people I’m saying yes to 🙂

Remember: start small, and build from there.
If saying no doesn’t feel comfortable yet, start to recognise how many things you are saying yes to! Saying no will follow soon……

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