Have you wondered how to say No to someone when you were intending to do your own thing? And did you then reluctantly have to go out of your way to serve their interests? The inability to say Nocan happen either if you have a low self-esteem, or if you simply too kind to others. Don’t be good at all times at the cost of sacrificing your own interests – it can be dangerous. You might be surprised that instead of your intention to remain in everyone’s good books, people can simply turn the table against you!People will seek favours, plead and put you in a dilemma to have their job done. Saying an assertive No needs confidence. But you also need to know when to say No. And learn to say No for appropriate reasons.

When to say No
  • Know whether the request is going to override your other tasks on the schedule and if they do, say No. If the request has a long-term prospect, it’s alright to ask for time to think it through
  • Estimate the importance of the asker. Is it your boss? Is it your colleague? Is it your spouse, a friend or a child? Or is it a stranger? Saying no to a stranger is the easiest, while it is the hardest to say no to those of prime importance in your life and career. Think about the genuineness of the stranger asking – may be his car is broken and he really needs a ride home! If you think there is no time to distinguish his goodness, you can simply hand-out some help number. And if you are dealing with someone who can impact your life, reconsider the request before you actually decline it
  • Consider the place and the moment where are in. If acting to the request makes you look like a scapegoat, just turn it down
  • Think about the offer being made. Is it bound to do you any good? It’s alright to abandon the idea if you have very make up your mind with no time given. Or request for some time, seek advice from friends and family
  • The golden rule is to follow the gut instinct – of never doing something that will make you fall from grace. In events that can call for this, just say No!
How to say No
  • When you say a No, make it clear so the other person doesn’t take it for an affirmative leading to miscommunication
  • It’s ideal to say No by being polite. It neither hurts the other person, nor does it cause you any regrets. Use words like, “I wished I could”, “If only I could help you but…”, “Not this time, sorry, thank you for asking anyway”
  • Bring conditions or excuses – “I could do that, but I am on my way to an appointment. Perhaps sometime in the future”
  • It is alright to use terms phrases like “Sorry” if it is a no-good request
  • If you feel the need of being really assertive, do it so with your body-language. A nod for the negative and a straight eye-contact will do it for you

See if you can pull out graciously the next time you face the situations.

Entrepreneurial Learning

To say No effortlessly and with no dilly-dallying can be made pleasant. Learn to say No with grace.

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