Learn When To Say No

support time management Jun 18, 2024
Young woman physician smiling as she protects her schedule for what matters most to her

The Empowering Art of Saying "No": A Guide for Single Mother Physicians

As a single mother and physician, your time, energy, and resources are precious. Juggling clinical duties with parenting can often lead to an overwhelming schedule. It's essential to understand that saying "no" is not only necessary but empowering.

Understanding the Power of "No"

"No" is often perceived negatively, but it's a powerful tool for setting boundaries and prioritizing your needs. As someone who manages both patient care and parenting, recognizing when and how to say "no" can drastically improve your quality of life and professional satisfaction.

Setting Boundaries to Save Time and Reduce Stress

Every "yes" adds another layer to your already packed schedule. Learn to evaluate requests with a critical eye—whether it’s an extra shift at the clinic or a school event on a busy day. Is this the best use of your time? Will it add unnecessary stress? Your time is invaluable; treat it that way.

Prioritizing Your Well-Being

Saying "no" to others often means saying "yes" to yourself. This could mean declining a last-minute request at work to attend your child's performance or skipping a non-essential meeting to catch up on rest. Remember, taking care of your health is crucial, not just for you but for your children who rely on you.

How to Say “No” Effectively

  • Be Assertive Yet Polite: Communicate your refusal firmly and clearly but with kindness. "Thank you for considering me, but I cannot commit to this right now" is both professional and respectful.
  • Explain if Necessary: Sometimes, a brief explanation can prevent misunderstandings. "I have clinical duties that day" or "I’ve committed to spending that evening with my children" provides context that most colleagues and friends will respect.
  • Offer Alternatives When Possible: If you wish to help, suggest other ways or times when you might be available. This shows willingness to assist without compromising your current priorities.

Empowering Yourself Through "No"

As you become more comfortable setting boundaries, you'll find that saying "no" not only protects your time and energy but also commands respect from your peers. You’ll set a powerful example for your children about the importance of valuing one’s own needs and limitations.

Navigating Challenges with Confidence

Remember, you are not alone in feeling stretched thin. Many single mother physicians share these challenges. By being selective about how you allocate your time and energy, you are taking important steps toward a balanced and fulfilling life both at home and in your medical practice.



Want to read more?

Here's a booklet you can copy and print off:


Copyright © Learning When To Say No

Single Mom MD ©2024




Table of Contents

Introduction   4

The Power of “No”  5

When to Say “No”  14

How to Say “No”  18

Conclusion   22




Eventually, there comes a time when we all have to stand up for ourselves.


You’ve been taken advantage of for too long. You’ve become that go-to person for every project and committee. You are targeted because everyone around you has found out your secret: you can’t help but say yes


…even when you don’t want to.


Don’t be taken advantage of another minute. It’s time to take charge of your life.


Rather than thinking of ‘no’ as being negative, you need to realize the positive energy that’s packed into this two-letter word.


Saying ‘no’ is a powerful thing, that will change how you think about your life – and yourself.


In this book, you’re going to learn when to say ‘no’ and how to say it in a way that keeps your relationships intact. You’ll become comfortable with saying ‘no’ in a way that will stay with you for the rest of your life.


It’s a fantastic journey you’re about to embark on. Let’s get started, with the power of no.


  The Power of “No”

‘No’ is naturally thought of as a negative word.


We’re taught from the time that we’re young to avoid the word ‘no.’ We use the word to refuse things, turn down opportunities, and declare ourselves as unyielding and unmoving.


In fact, we are often told not to use it.


  • ‘Yes’ is shown to us as being bold and energizing, making you open to possibility and opportunity.


  • ‘No’ is a slammed door in a locked house.


  • ‘Yes’ is the open skies and the wide-open spaces of the world at your disposal.


  • ‘Yes’ means we’re amenable, it makes us likable. It is welcoming and comfortable


  • ‘No’ is the greedy friend who will never share. It turns us away.


To be honest, It’s a pretty grim picture.


The sad thing is, most of us go through life never realizing that what we’ve been taught, is wrong.


‘No' is really just a boundary line.


 It defines the edges between us and the world. It's what protects us and makes us stronger. It is the word that holds control of our destiny.

With ‘no' you set the standard both for how you wish to be treated, and how much you will allow others to dictate your life.


‘No' is our possibility and our opportunity for growth and it is the way that we get things done.


How does ‘No’ do all that and more?


  It Saves Your Time
The biggest reason to use ‘no’ is because of the time wasted when you don’t.


We all only get 24 hours a day, and it's up to us how we use them. By saying ‘yes' to every request, the problem becomes apparent immediately:  you just run out of time.


Your schedule gets so packed that It can feel like it’s impossible to breathe, much less get any of your work accomplished.


Saying ‘no’ puts your day back into your own hands. This isn’t about being selfish. It’s being protective of one of your most valuable resources – your time. That’s not to say you can’t spare an hour for a friend, or take on that extra project, but you should be the one to decide if that’s a valuable use of your day or not.


How do you go about doing that?


You start with an understanding of where your hours go and how you spend or intend to spend, your time.


You begin by setting a To-Do list the night before. This establishes how you wish to use your time for the day before you even wake up. It’s much easier to protect a schedule that’s already in place than it is to try and guess how much time you have for extra requests.


From there it’s a matter of protecting your time. Be aware of the hours in your day when you’re being asked to do something.


If you’re not sure of whether or not you actually do have time for something new, then there is nothing wrong with asking for some time to consider it. Doing so gives you time to check your schedule and see if you do have room  for their request. 


  It Sets Expectations and Avoids Exploitation
When you say ‘yes’ to everything, then anything goes.


Being so open to accepting requests means that people know they can ask you for the moon, the sun, and a half dozen stars.


As it becomes apparent that you’re the type to say ‘yes,’ it invites exploitation of the worst kind. Someone who always says ‘yes’ is very easy to take advantage of.


Sadly, human nature dictates that this kind of weakness will be rooted out and used relentlessly by those who are not as kind or even as ethical as the rest of us.


Most of us won’t even realize that it’s happening until it’s too late.


How do you know when you’re being taken advantage of? Check your feelings. If you’re feeling resentful, then it’s usually a pretty good indicator that you’re not being appreciated for your work. Also, be alert for the repeat offenders, those who come at you time and again with requests, one after another.


In saying ‘no,’ you can take back those expectations and the power that comes with it. You start with setting your own boundaries, then maintaining them. If you become known as that person who won’t work on Saturday because that’s your day with the family, eventually people will just quit asking. They will come to realize that the answer is always going to be ‘no’ on Saturdays.


What’s more, this becomes part of who you are.


The world around you becomes aware of your boundaries and knows that you’re a person who sticks to your word. If you say ‘no’ to certain kinds of things, then expectations form.


It becomes obvious that there’s no point in even asking you for things if you’re going to say ‘no’ anyway. This further protects you from frivolous time-wasting requests. It will also lead to you being admired for your integrity and always sticking to what you believe in.


  It Helps You Avoid Being Overwhelmed
As mentioned before, the more you say yes, the more packed your schedule gets.

Having this much work (or even leisure activity) gets overwhelming very fast. Especially when you find that you tend to say ‘yes' to the point where your downtime suffers. Before you know it, you can't even remember when you last had a minute to yourself, and that’s not healthy.


The problem with living under this kind of constant stress is that sooner or later your body will tell you that enough is enough.


This is where you start seeing problems. Weight gain from grabbing too many quick meals, high blood pressure from constant deadlines, poor sleep at night; all because you’re worried about how you’re going to get it all done.


All this adds up very quickly. Keep it up, and you can be assured of a quick trip to the doctor or even the hospital at some point. While that’s guaranteed to clear your schedule, it won’t be in the way that you want.


So how do you get on top of things? You start by protecting your commitment level.


When you were a child, you might have been criticized for putting too much food on your plate. You might have even been told that "Your eyes are bigger than your stomach." It's a great saying that reminds us too often we overestimate our abilities. Only this time we're not talking about food, but in the level of work you can take on.


We forget to build in that ‘cushion' just in case the project takes a little longer. Or we convince ourselves that we can do the project in less time than we should. We think we actually do have time in our schedule for that extra project when our To-Do list is trying desperately to tell us otherwise. 


Either way, you wind up being committed to more than you can manage. How do you solve this?


You start by cutting yourself some slack. If you want to take on something new – great! But be sure to be reasonable in the amount of time that it’s going to take.


Sit down and evaluate this honestly. Is this a weekly commitment? Daily? What kind of deadline is already attached? Is that feasible? Estimate how long you think a project will take, and then build in a little extra just in case something comes up.


Also, be reasonable about your current workload. If you already have more than enough to do, then it’s probably time to say ‘no.’ After, all, you can’t do everything, no matter how hard you try.


  It Prioritizes Yourself

This might be the hardest concept to grasp for some of us.


To understand the importance of taking care of your own needs first, you're going to have to accept that you have value and that your needs are essential.

If you have trouble wrapping your mind around this, you might be a “People Pleaser”. People pleasers tend to put the needs of others before their own.




A lot of this stems from our childhood. Somewhere along the way, we were taught that thinking about ourselves first was selfish. We also find out that doing things for other people, makes them happy with us.


This need to please became so ingrained in us that we carried the concept into adulthood.


As adults, we frequently forget that it’s impossible to take care of the needs of anyone else if or our own needs aren’t met first.


You can’t work if you’re so hungry that you’re lost in a brain fog. You’re never going to meet your deadline if you’re so exhausted that you can’t finish that report. If you forget to exercise, eventually your body will let you know that it doesn’t have the energy for one more commitment.


You have to realize that you really can’t give your best when you aren’t at your best


This is where you need to learn how to say ‘no’ for the so-called selfish reasons.


You decide what you need to do to protect yourself, so that you can answer yes to the things that matter. This means things like:


  • Not letting random requests interfere with your workout regimen.
  • Making sure you don't skip meals to honor a request
  • Ensuring that that you do get enough sleep and downtime


But you can’t stop there. While physical health is important, your mental health is equally so.


Doing things that tear down your self-esteem, that send you into a spiral of self-hate and resentment will eventually turn into bigger issues.


It’s nearly impossible to be productive when you’re struggling emotionally just to get through the day.


So, what can you do?


You start saying no. You say ‘no’ to things that will leave you burned out and exhausted emotionally. Some people or projects are drains on your mental resources. You’re no good to anyone else if you neglect to protect your mental health.


If working with someone is bad for your mental health, it seriously is time to say ‘no’ – quickly. This is perhaps one of the most important boundaries you’ll ever set, and probably the one that will give you back the most power over your life.


  It Prioritizes People you Really Care About

Why are you saying ‘yes’ to people that don't even matter?


Here's one of the worst problems about saying ‘yes' all the time – we get indiscriminate in who we say ‘yes' too. This means that every request that comes becomes equally important.


Should that be the case? …no!


Saying ‘no’ means taking back the ability to decide who it is we want to work with, and who we want to support.


It means that not everyone is equal in importance in your life and that you get to decide who is – and who isn’t. This is an amazingly powerful feeling.


You start by establishing more boundaries (are you sensing a theme?). When you get a request from someone, ask yourself who is doing the asking. Is this someone you like and respect? Can you work with them regardless?  Sometimes you’re not given a choice of who you work with, but If you have some flexibility, you might want to look into other options.


Working with people you don’t like is very draining emotionally – and even physically. You’ll get tired faster and won’t be as productive.


When a request means you might have to deal with a difficult person, a solution might mean offering a ‘no' but with an alternative.


For example: Maybe you don't get along with some of the other parents in the parent-teacher organization at your child's school. You might decide that serving on a committee with those individuals would be too much of a headache. But you have no problem at all with volunteering with the kids on Sports Day.


This creates a compromise that you can live with and still allows you to be part of your child’s life at school.


Sometimes you’re just going to have to say ‘no’ though.


When that happens, keep in mind that saying ‘no’ to the people you don’t want to work with, frees up time and resources so that you have the ability to say ‘yes’ to the people that really do matter to you.


  It Lowers Frustration
Frustration is a part of life. We all have to deal with it from time to time, but what if we could reduce it by simply saying ‘no’?


Nothing is quite so frustrating as being taken for granted. After a while, you can’t help but think that if you didn’t jump up and say ‘yes’ to everything that no one would ever see you at all.


Worse, when you say ‘no’ you tend to prove that very point. Often people who needed us just seconds ago, forget we exist after hearing ‘no’.


Sometimes no matter how many times you’ve said ‘yes’ to someone else, you’re still the one hearing ‘no’ when you need something done.


The quickest way to lower our frustration is to cut the dead weight out of our life.


This means getting rid of those projects and people that you find frustrating. Why are you putting yourself through emotional distress for someone who doesn’t appreciate you in the first place?


Start by looking at what is being asked of you. How does the request make you feel? If you've got resentment and frustration building before you so much as open your mouth, it's time to say ‘no.’


Those feelings are only going to build and grow worse over time. The longer you’re on the project, the more you’re likely to regret it. Saying ‘no’ now will eliminate all that frustration right from the start.


The interesting side effect of saying ‘no’ is that you’re more apt to be both noticed and respected when you do.


When you say ‘no,’ you’re telling the world that you have value and worth and that you respect yourself enough to put your needs first.


Not to mention, the very fact that you're able to confidently say ‘no' once in a while gives your ‘yes' that much more value. After all, who would you rather hang out with – the person who says yes to absolutely everything or the one who has chosen to say ‘yes' to you alone? It's really no contest.


  It Allows us to Say Yes to the Critical Things

As mentioned before, there truly is only so much we can do in the day.


This all boils down to the fact, that we need to be in control of what we do and why. We should be able to pick and choose the things that matter the most to us.


How do you do that?


You start with a clear understanding of what you hope to gain out of life. What are your goals? Where do you want to be in a year? In 3 years? In 5 or 10? Use those ideas as a template for the things you say ‘yes' to.


If something doesn't serve your purpose in some way, if it doesn't help you to reach your goal or satisfy you in some other way, then it's up to you to say ‘no' so that the next thing that beneficial thing that comes along can be said ‘yes' to. It really is just that easy.


Does everything have to be career-oriented though? Not in the least.


We have personal goals as well. Maybe you realize that in 5 years your kids will be going off to college. That might mean your goal right now would be to spend some quality time with them before they go. Saying ‘no’ to frivolous requests, might give you more time for family activities.


Also, when evaluating the things that matter, you want to keep in mind things that gets you excited.


What captures your interest? If you have a fascination for local politics, a love for books, or a desire to save the whales you need to figure that into your plans as well. Saying ‘no’ might mean a chance to start a book club. Or a petition. Or even to run for local office. None of this would be possible if you’d already overbooked yourself by saying ‘yes’ to pointless busy work.


Saying ‘no’ frees us up to save all of our resources, our time, and our energy for those things that we want to do most. This puts the power squarely in your hands and you once again become the master of your fate.


In the end, saying ‘no’ is you at your most powerful.


Only someone who is confident, healthy, and capable can say ‘no' in order to organize their life in the most beneficial ways for themselves.  


Choose how you spend your time. Then decide who you want to spend it with. By taking control of your desires, your needs, and your health, you are using ‘no' to create a version of you that's the very best.


It sounds exciting, doesn’t it?


Keep reading to find out how to recognize that the time has come to say ‘no.’




  When to Say “No”

Knowing that ‘no' is powerful and knowing when to use it are often two very different things.


In the last section you learned why ‘no' is so powerful and important, now it's time to put it into practice. This is often easier said than done. You can't say ‘no' until you understand when it’s most advantageous to do so.


Let’s face it; you can’t just say ‘no’ to everything. If you do that, you will actually stunt your ability to grow and change. Besides, some things you will want to do, and others, you’ll need to do because of the commitments to your job, family and/or friends.


This means choosing carefully just where you want to say ‘no’ so that you’re using it to your best advantage.


Below, we have complied a list of when to say ‘no’ - to use as a reference.


While this doesn’t represent every situation, it does give you a guide that will prove useful as you start to take back the power and control of your own life.


While some of these items might seem self-explanatory, let’s discuss them each in more detail just to be sure.


This list will surely help clear up any lingering confusion about just when to say ‘no.’


  When it isn’t Your Responsibility
It’s all too easy to fall into the trap of riding to the rescue, especially when you’re hoping to prove yourself at work, or in a certain relationship.


The problem is, not everything you’re saying ‘yes’ to is your responsibility in the first place. Quite often you shouldn’t even have been the one to jump in now and get involved.


When asked to do something, the first thing you have to do is ask yourself whether you’re the right person for the job. It might be someone else is better for the job. More than likely …It was their job to do it in the first place.


  When you are Already Too Busy

Benjamin Franklin said, “If you want something done, give it to a busy person.”


While this holds a grain of truth, if you're already swamped with things to do, then chances are you don't need anything else on your plate right now.


The best way to figure out if you're too busy is to take a hard look at your schedule. Do you even have the room for one more thing?


This is going to involve some brutal honesty. Ask yourself just how long it's going to take and figure out how that vibes with your current schedule. Don’t underestimate either! We tend not to allow ourselves enough time to do things, so we might be = already overworked and not even know it.


  When it’s a Negative Drain on Your Resources

Too often we forget that we only have 24 hours a day and that several of those need to be spent sleeping.


Evaluate your resources right now. How many hours a day do you dedicate to work? What about to family or friends? What about downtime for yourself?


When you're being asked to take on something new its easy to forget you're going to have to take away resources from somewhere else. Can you afford it? 


For example, if you find out that you're considering giving up an hour of sleep or might be skipping a meal to do something, you're in the danger zone.


Taking away from necessary resources you need to be healthy and happy is never a good idea. Neither is giving up time in a day to do something that's going to leave you exhausted.


Anytime you say yes to something that leaves a negative impact on your life it’s a bad idea.


  When it isn’t Important to You

What someone else thinks as absolutely crucial might not be all that important to you.


For example, getting involved in someone’s political campaign when you’re not invested in that candidate is never going to go well. If you’re trying to do something that you’re not emotionally invested in, it’s nearly impossible to put forth your best effort.


What’s more, by taking on the job you might be taking it away from someone else who is passionate about the cause. The solution? Say ‘no' whenever you're being asked to jump into something you don't care about. 


  When you Feel Like you are Being Taken Advantage Of
The problem with having said ‘yes’ so many times in the past, is that now everyone expects a ‘yes’ when they come to you.


Unfortunately, this tends to encourage a certain kind of person to take advantage of the situation – which they do, as often as possible.


How can you tell if someone is taking advantage of you? Go by your gut feelings in the situation. If someone is asking something of you and you immediately feel repulsed, upset, or resentful of the offer, then the chances are that person is taking advantage of you.


This is the time you need to learn to trust your instincts. Anytime you feel taken advantage of by a request, say ‘no.’ This is your cue to get out of the situation now before it’s too late.


  When it’s Something That Makes you Uncomfortable
This dovetails in with the last point but with a slightly different take.


Not every situation that makes you uncomfortable involves someone taking advantage of you. Some requests are just creepy or feel wrong.


Again, trust your instincts. If something feels ‘off,’ then it usually is. Just like the last point, say ‘no’ and run.


  When it’s Something that Goes Against Your Core Values

You've been passionate about the environment for a long time, but now someone comes to you and wants you to be part of a political campaign for a candidate that has proven that they don't care about the environment at all.


In a situation like that, it's easy to see that you're being asked to do something that goes against what you believe in. But not every situation is this cut and dried.


Before you can determine if a request is a compromise of what you believe, you need to know what you stand for.


You can accomplish this by defining your values and sticking to them.


If you're not sure that something you're being asked to do means a moral compromise, then ask for more information. If you are still unclear, ask for some time to think it over so you can research that question for yourself.


If it turns out to be something on the wrong side of the fence from where you are, then it's time to say ‘no.’


  When it Hurts Someone you Care About

This one should go without saying. Anytime you’re asked to do something that in any way hurts someone you love; it’s time to say no.


Nothing is worth the betrayal and hurt that friend or loved one will experience when they find out your involvement – and they will find out.


When to say ‘no’ doesn’t have to be complicated. Just remember not to overthink things. Most of “saying no” is about having clear boundaries and making sure that no one crosses them without your permission.


Where do we go from here?  With a pretty clear idea in your head about when and where you want to use the power of ‘no,’ it’s time to learn exactly how to do it.




  How to Say “No”

This is the hardest part of the whole concept of saying ‘no.’ Most people aren’t comfortable with saying the actual words. If you struggle to say ‘no’. it likely comes down to one of three reasons:


  1. You’re afraid of looking bad.
  2. You don’t like letting people down.
  3. You hate conflict.


Saying ‘no’ becomes a whole lot easier when you realize that people aren’t thinking about you as much as you think.


That might seem a little harsh but keep reading. It’s not as bad as it sounds.


Most people who ask for something are expecting a ‘no' even though they're hoping for a ‘yes.'


More often than not, once they hear ‘no' they move on to the next person on their list.


You don't look bad. You haven't let anyone down, and unless you're dealing with a particular kind of individual, there's no need to expect any conflict at all. Even in the worst-case scenario, any conflict that does arise will be minimal.


That said, knowing this doesn’t lessen the anxiety. This is why knowing how to say ‘no’ can go a long way toward making this process a whole lot easier.


Here are some quick methods that have been proven to work very well when it comes time to say ‘no.’


  Be Quick About It

If the thing you’re being asked to do is something that you immediately know you don’t want any part of; then there's no reason to make anyone wait for an answer.


Just say ‘no' quickly and be done with it. T


hat doesn't mean you shouldn't be polite about it, but there's no need to make endless excuses either. Just a simple ‘no, thank you' will suffice.


What do you do if they press for more details? That depends on your audience, but even that should be kept simple. "I'm busy that day" or "I have too much to do" is all the explanation they need.


  Be Honest – Don’t Lie

The worst thing you can do for all involved is to come up with an elaborate excuse.


For one thing, lies are almost always found out. For another, keeping your lies straight just gives you something else to worry about.


Just be honest – but not brutally honest. Saying, "No, I won't go because quite honestly I don't like you" might be a little too much. But saying, "No, I can't go, but thank you for asking" is sufficient.


You don't need to say anything else. Less is more.


  Ask For More Time

Sometimes you know you want to say ‘no’ but you can’t put into words just why that is. This is the ideal moment to say, "I'd like to sleep on that" or something similar.


This allows you to delve a little deeper. Maybe you need to check your schedule or do a little more research. Do what you need to do to figure out why you're saying no.


A few things to keep in mind: don't take too long to decide as that's impolite and even wishy-washy. When you finally do say no, again, keep it simple. There’s no need to go back over your long decision-making process. The time was to satisfy you – not them.


  Suggest an Alternative

If you're feeling especially bad about saying no – it might be this was something you wanted to do but didn't have room for on your schedule – then help the asker to find the alternative.


For example, you might offer to do it later, when you have time in your schedule.


If it turns out that there was a deadline on this offer and they really can't wait for you, then maybe you can suggest someone else who might be the perfect fit for the project.


  Show Gratitude

A ‘no’ always sounds better when you remember to use it with an expression of thanks.


 "It's nice of you to ask, but I'm afraid I'm not available that weekend" sounds so much better than just "I'm not available that weekend."


Again, be sincere in your expression. This is an especially valuable tool to use when you're anxious to avoid burning bridges with that individual because you want to work with them sometime in the future.


  Don’t Over Apologize. 

Anytime you apologize you’re putting yourself in a weaker position that sounds like you want to either be asked again or badgered into accepting.


“I’m sorry” tends to sound wishy-washy, like you really regret not being able to say ‘yes’. This will sometimes be interpreted as you saying, ‘convince me’ rather than ‘no’.


Instead, express your ‘no’ in a firm and confident tone of voice. Don’t be sorry, don’t express regret. Just say ‘no’ in simple terms. If the person still keeps asking, then express ‘no' as many times as it takes to get the point across.


Keep in mind that you can always walk away, especially if someone is badgering you.


  Soften your Language

No' is about being in control not about expressing dominance.


There's a fine distinction. When saying no, be kind and respectful. Try the ‘sandwich approach' by saying something positive, then saying no, and then repeating something positive.


Something along the lines of "That sounds like a great project. While I can't help you with that, I appreciate your thinking of me" works perfectly.


  Refer to Your Commitment to Others

When you’re overbooked, it should be easy to say ‘no’ outright, but sometimes that can be a challenge.


Sticking with honesty once again (see a trend here?), if you are already doing things for other people, let the person asking you know. Just politely and firmly tell them you currently have too many other people relying on you to take on any more commitments.



Confine your Feelings

No matter what you do, you're going to want to rein in the emotions.


This isn't the time or place to get upset. The more emotional you are, the more likely this refusal is going to turn into that conflict that you were trying so hard to avoid.


Do what you can to keep things level and unemotional. Take a few deep breaths and remember this doesn't have to be personal. Are you still having trouble? Then step back until you can rein in the emotions.


Tell the other person that you need a minute or ask if you can get back to them tomorrow. That gives you the space and time you need to separate yourself emotionally from the situation so that you can provide a calm and clear ‘no.'


  Realize it’s Not Just You Saying No

Sometimes the best approach is to take a step back out of the situation entirely.


Sometimes you aren’t saying no just because of yourself. Sometimes you are acting as a representative of a company, or a family.


This keeps the ‘no’ from feeling personal and takes a situation away from “I am not able to make that commitment to you” over to “our company is not able to make that commitment to you.”


By acting as a representative, you can gain some much-needed emotional distance from what might be an uncomfortable situation.



As with anything, saying ‘no’ gets easier the more you do it.


Saying ‘no' might seem daunting at first, especially if you're not wired that way naturally, but trust me, it gets easier. The more you commit to setting your personal boundaries by saying ‘no”, the better you will get at it.


Once you’re more comfortable with saying no, you will wonder why you weren’t doing it more often before!


Soon you'll find that you're able to embrace the ‘no' and use it in your life to regain power and control where you never had any previously. This is a fantastic feeling and one that will help you to progress in ways that you never dreamed you could.










Saying ‘no’ is a fine art.


Mastering this valuable skill then makes you an artist, a visionary, and a person of power.


That might seem a little over the top but think about it. Before you said no, what were you? Now, with these skills under your belt, you’re able to not only see the future but to plan for it.


You’ve learned the fine art of improving your relationships with those around you, and you’ve managed to take charge of your life.


Don’t feel like you’re there yet? You will be.


Keep in mind that all this change isn’t going to happen overnight. New skills take time to master, and with any habit, the more the practice saying ‘no,’ the better you’ll get at it.


Slipping up and saying ‘yes’ to the wrong thing isn’t going to be the end of the world. Just take note of the event and learn from it. This way, the next time that situation comes up you know better how to handle it.


Try to remember these 3 important things:


  1. Saying ‘no’ is a positive and powerful experience.
  2. Recognizing when to say ‘no’ is half the battle.
  3. Saying ‘no’ doesn’t have to be difficult.


Embrace the life that saying ‘no’ has given you. You’re powerful. You’re in control. Now go accomplish great things!


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