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The Art of Saying No

If you are the kind of person who goes on saying yes to every other thing and then finds yourself stuck because of too many commitments, do yourself a favor and start saying no. It is not a crime to say no. Your friends and family will understand, they will still care about you, even when you cannot make certain social engagements. And if your friends do not get it, it is probably time to find new ones. When we truly care about someone, we will still care about them if they miss an activity.

Do you ever stop and think, why do we do this? Why can’t we say NO? Probably because we are afraid to say no, to let people down, and ultimately, to avoid confrontation. The stress of saying no often makes us say yes automatically. And later on, we complain or blame ourselves, “why couldn’t I just say no?”

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One of the reasons we find it difficult to say no is because we want to conform to other people’s expectations. But, it’s healthy to put yourself first, make sure while you are saying yes to them you are not saying no to yourself. Sure, it can be difficult as a beginner but nothing worthy comes out of easy right? And Change is the only constant. There is no harm If some amount of change can do you good. Also, for people to respect your “yes”, it’s important to sometimes say “no”.

You might fear that the other person may not like it and may get offended which can later affect your relationship with them. But, trust me it’s more important to say yes to yourself than to others. For a long and healthy relationship, you need to respect each other’s no’s.

Know your commitments and how valuable your precious time is. Then, when someone asks you to dedicate some of your time to a new commitment or anything, you’ll know that you simply cannot do it and say it out loud, straight and crystal clear, “right now I have a lot going on already and I don’t think I can take up this”. People who are mature enough and have a life too just as you will surely respect your decision and it’s also okay if they don’t.

Even if you do have some extra time (which, for many of us, is rare), ask yourself is this new commitment really the way you want to spend that time? Then do as your heart directs. For you to live a life you want, you will have to say no to a life other people are offering, as simple as that, and trust me once you start saying no, there is no going back, because after experiencing the joy and freedom of saying no you do not want to engage into something you are not willing to do. You don’t owe them anything but you owe yourself happiness and freedom, and you better not let other people decide it for you.

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The most important of them all is to say no without feeling guilty and also do not go on giving a full-fledged explanation as to why are you saying, what are you saying. Cut it short to a polite no, like “I would love to but…...” etc.

Because you have said yes, many times, the other party knows exactly what to say and do to turn your “no” into “yes”. Recognize this manipulative tactic, keep your cool and stand firm in your decision. Saying no helps you set up your own boundaries and people should be made aware of what they are. People worry that you’ll miss out on something leads you to take on everything. But when you consider decisions from a place of abundance, you think about how an opportunity will fit into your life. You consider that it might be a good option, but you realize there will be plenty more opportunities if you turn this one down. And, hence it’s okay to do that.

Saying “no” is an art and in a world like ours, it is an important one. Love yourself enough to set boundaries. Your time and energy are precious. You get to choose how you use it. You teach people how to treat you by deciding what you will and won’t accept.

Good luck with this one.

Sending all the good vibes your way.

I started to say no. I’m not doing that. I don’t want to do that. I’m not taking that picture. I’m not going to that event. I’m not standing by that because that’s not what I stand for. And slowly but surely, I remembered who I am, and then you go home, and you look in the mirror, and you’re like, “Yes, I can go to bed with you every night.” Because that person, I know that person. That person has balls, that person has integrity, that person has an opinion. —Lady Gaga

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