Hey there, welcome to our new blog series! We wanted to share some quick tips that you can apply to your life right away on a broad range of topics. If you’re looking to be more productive, improve your influencing skills, or be more inclusive in your relationships, these tips are designed to be practical and easy to implement.
For now, we’re calling them ‘Quick Wins’. My team and I will regularly be posting and I really hope you find them useful. Check out the first one, all about saying no 😝
3 simple tips on how to say ‘no’
Are you a people pleaser? Do you find yourself saying “yes” to every request that comes your way, even when you really don’t want to or don’t have the time to take it on? It’s time to start flexing your “no” muscle! Saying no is a powerful tool in managing your time and energy.
Practice Makes Perfect
Saying no is a skill that takes practice. If you’re used to saying yes all the time, it can feel uncomfortable at first to turn down a request. Start small by saying no to something low-risk, like an invitation to a social event that you’re not interested in. As you get more comfortable saying no, you can work your way up to bigger requests. I love this tip because gradually it starts to feel more natural and really empowering.
Be polite but firm
It’s important to say no in a way that is polite but also firm. You don’t want to leave the other person feeling rejected or unclear. Start by thanking them for considering you for the task or opportunity, and then explain why you’re unable to say yes. Be honest but also respectful of their needs. For example, “Thank you so much for thinking of me for this project. I’m swamped with other work right now and wouldn’t be able to give it the attention it deserves. I appreciate the opportunity, though.”
Offer an alternative
If you’re saying no to a request but still want to help out in some way, consider offering an alternative. Maybe you can’t take on the whole project, but you could offer to connect the person with someone who might be a better fit. Or perhaps you can’t attend an event, but you could send a small gift or note of appreciation. By offering an alternative, you show that you’re still invested and want to be helpful in other ways.
In conclusion, saying no is an important part of managing your time and energy. It can feel uncomfortable at first, but with practice, I’ve found you can become more confident in turning down requests that don’t align with your priorities or capacity. Remember to be polite but firm and offer alternatives when possible. By saying no when appropriate, you’ll be able to say yes to the things that matter most to you.
I’m sure we will be revisiting this subject as there is so much more to talk about! Best of luck applying these simple tips, start small but start saying ‘no’ today.
Saying no can be the ultimate self-care – Claudia Black