Just Say “NO!”
Are you a people pleaser who has a hard time saying “no?” Do you say “yes” when you want to say “no?” Do you feel guilty if you say “no?” If so, you are not alone.
When we try to be all things to all people, we can easily get out of balance, feel overwhelmed, and lose ourselves. If we say “yes” when we want to say “no” because we feel obligated, we can become resentful and end up doing the task poorly or not at all.
Stop putting yourself last and instead put some of the attention on you! In order to say “yes” to yourself, sometimes you have to say “no” to others. Here are some tips on how to do that.
• Start slowly, with baby steps. Start with something small like, “No, I don’t want to go to that restaurant.” You will feel more confident as you go along and it will become easier.
• “No” is a complete sentence. Don’t feel like you need to justify, understand, defend, or explain. “No” is “no” and that is all you need to say.
• Sometimes “no” can be the beginning of a negotiation. If the other person is not happy with your “no,” it is his or her responsibility to come back to you and start the negotiation. At that point you can say, “I can’t do that but I can do this” or “I don’t know how to do that, but I can help you find someone who can.
• Oftentimes, we are caught by surprise and just don’t know how to say “no.” If that happens, pause for a few seconds and say, “Let me check my calendar and I will get back to you.” That will give you time to gain control and come back with a “no.”
You are not a bad person if you say “no!” Getting rid of the “disease to please” is a process, but it is better than being overwhelmed and feeling resentful about how you spend your time and energy. Saying “no” can be very empowering; try it!