Not every situation that arises in your life should be entertained, your time is precious and frankly, not everyone or everything has your best interest at heart. The importance of learning to say no can be the difference between getting involved in a sticky situation or walking away with your head held high.
The power of no!
Whenever you hear the word no, it means that you’ve come to the end of an agreement but I believe that no is a word that we do not use enough.
Your friends are having a get-together but you have a ton of work to do. Instead of saying no, you allow them to talk you into going to the party. Something goes wrong and your only thoughts are, “I should have stayed home.”
If you had declined the invitation, you’d have finished your work and got some much-needed rest. But because you didn’t say no, you’re now stuck pulling two all-nighters trying to meet your deadline.
You do not have to show up to every party, you do not have to answer every phone call, and you certainly do not have to give an explanation of why you’re choosing to say no.
Why learning to say no is important
I’ve been in numerous situations where I felt if I had declined the invitation, I’d have been a lot better. Being an introvert with a small amount of extroverted tendencies, I always choose to stay home instead of going out. Sometimes I allow myself to get talked into doing things that I had no intention of doing because I like to try new things and explore.
Parties are not one of those things. Most of the time when I allow myself to get talked into going to a party, I normally leave feeling like I wasted an outfit, makeup, and some precious hours of sleep.
I had to learn after numerous failed attempts of being a true extrovert that it’s better for me to say no.
That no has given me the power to choose where I want to go and who I spend my time with. It’s opened up a world of possibilities that I enjoy exploring instead of trying to fit into someone else’s preconceived notion of a “good time”.
Learning to say no gives you power over your decisions and allows you to do what you want.
Why you should say no more often
Before Covid-19, I knew a lot of people who would force themselves to go out and mingle with people even though they’d rather be at home drinking a hot cup of chocolate, simply because they couldn’t bring themselves to tell their peers, no.
They became the “life of the party” when they truly wanted to be home alone binge watching Netflix.
If you were that type of person, it’s time to take your personal power back from people who do not care about your sanity.
Saying no should be easy! If you don’t want to do something, don’t do it. Follow your gut feeling and do exactly what you want.
The only person who matters at the end of the day when no-one else is around is you. Saying no means that you’re taking care of yourself. It is another form of self-care.
Benefits of saying no
Besides feeling in control of your actions, saying no has plenty of benefits.
Saying no means you:
- Value yourself and your opinions
- Value your time
- Are standing for what you believe in
- Know exactly what you want and are not afraid to go for it
- Respect yourself
- Value your well-being
How to say no politely
Simply saying “No!” can be harsh in certain situations. Luckily there are nicer ways of saying no that still carry the full force of the word.
Here are a few options:
“I’m sorry I couldn’t be of more help”
“I have way too much on my plate at the moment but you could try…”
“This is not the best option for me.”
“Sorry but I’d rather…”
It’s okay to say no to things that you rather not do. Doing so means that you value yourself and your time. Don’t allow yourself to be bullied into situations you’d rather stay far from. The choice is always yours.