A responsible employee who is always ready to help with tasks of colleagues, to work on weekends or during vacations. The best friend who is ready to come at night and listen to the problems of a loved one. The caring sister who supports her brother and rushes to give her last savings to let him buy a car he dreams about. Perhaps you recognized yourself in one of the examples. Often we find it hard to say no to others, so we find ourselves in a cage of other people’s requests and problems, in which there is no place for our own desires and needs. And all because saying “no” requires a titanic effort from us.
Sometimes to the detriment of ourselves and our personal life, we rush to help others, without thinking about the limitations of our resources and about whether the person really needs help that much. Maybe he or she simply wants to pass the responsibility on to us or to gain an advantage. You can recognize these situations and respond to the person in a way that doesn’t offend them. Here’s how to do it.
Analyze What You Aren’t Ready to Give up
When you identify what’s really important to you and what you’re not willing to spend your time on, then you can confidently say “no” to the person. Write down on a piece of paper a list of activities, events and people that are a priority for you. That way you’ll be clearly aware of your desires and boundaries, and understand in which situation you can help, and in which you’ll definitely refuse. For example, work is your priority now. So you can’t stop doing your tasks, even if new mobile slots have been released or your friends ask you to go out with them tonight.
Say No to the Request, Not to the Person
You were approached with a request, it means that you are considered a good man, who can help out in a difficult situation. But this does not require you to unconditionally comply with the request. If you refuse to help, you do not spoil relations with the person. You just can’t help at the moment. Thank the person who approached you and give a polite response.
Explain What the Reason Is
You’ll find it easier to refuse a request if you tell them the reason, and the person will understand you better and won’t take offense. Don’t be afraid to say that you’re busy or tired, you have a meeting planned, and it’s important for you to be there. Explain why you can’t help right now.
Don’t Give up, Be Adamant
Some people don’t understand negative responses and begin to talk, manipulate, and pity them. Don’t give in to their entreaties, reiterate the reason for refusal and emphasize that it really matters to you.
If the opponent continues to insist on the request, do not be afraid to answer “no” as confidently.
Be Bold in Your Decisions
If you are used to saying “yes” to any request, you need to get up the courage to start turning people down. Some people agree to help, because they are afraid of offending people, do not want to be thought badly of them, or are worried that they will miss a good opportunity and will regret it.
Explain to yourself that by answering “no,” you are freeing up your time for more important and meaningful things that will improve your life.
Polite refusal will help you stay effective and keep your sanity. Being able to say “no” on time will not make you a bad person but will help you become confident and move clearly toward your goals.
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