It’s time that we learn the power of saying “No.” When done in a polite manner, it’s one of the most effective ways to show respect for yourself and the other party. It took me a long time to realize this because I always like to please others and accommodate everyone’s requests; but I learned over the years that saying No is a powerful tool to empower yourself in both professional and private settings.
Women especially are prone to saying Yes when they actually want to say No. We tend to be less direct with words and put others’ needs ahead of our own.
Of course, saying Yes can lead to opportunities. Saying Yes is seen as polite in most cultures and often times necessary. What’s important is that we all learn to selectively say Yes and No. Know that it’s perfectly okay to say No, and that saying No is always an option. Saying No sends a strong signal that you are in control of who you are.
When you are in a situation where you prefer to say No but feel guilty about it, remind yourself of these benefits of saying No.
- You will learn to honor yourself and your needs. If you keep saying yes all the time, you are depleting your resources – your time and energy. Remember, you can’t be everywhere all the time. Saying No is a tool to ensure you can be in the right place at the right time.
- You will learn to respect others by being your true self. By faking a Yes when you mean No, you are showing up as another version of yourself.
- You will know your limits and boundaries to fully serve those that you can serve – this will allow you to comfortably say No the next time a similar situation arises.
- You will create meaningful space for what really matters to you. By saying No, you are saying Yes to things that matter to you the most.
- You will feel empowered. By knowing you can say No in certain circumstances, you are in control of your own paths.
Next time there’s a party you could attend but don’t want to, or someone asks you to do them a favor, remember that saying No is an option. By being comfortable with saying No, you ensure that your authentic self is always showing up to what makes you you.
Here are additional resources to help you become better at saying No:
7 Tips for Saying No Effectively
A Scientific Guide to Saying “No”: How to Avoid Temptation and Distraction
How to Say No: 3 Steps for People Pleasers