Mastering A Skill Of Saying No

At some point in our life, we all have to learn how to say “No” in the most effective way and manner, which perfectly fits our character and current life situation.

Some of us intuitively do an amazing job at it, others – like me have to struggle for years, and master this skill hard way: through mistakes, training and books, well and tears sometimes…

Learn how to say No

1. Your boss wants you to work 15 hours every day with no lunch because he/she wants to be promoted? It’s time to say “No”. Well, you can be fired, be very careful.

2. You started to date a person, and in very short time your life became a nightmare? It’s time to say “No” to this relationship and person. I’m sure you will find your second half soon, be patient, trust me! I took me years to find mine.

3. The car you love, breaks down so often, it does look great and impressive but your budget feels the tension, it’s time to say “No” to his car.

It’s hard to say “No” for some of us when people like close friends, brothers or sisters… asking for help and there is nothing wrong with it, it’s amazing that your heart always open to other people. Bravo!!

But besides everything (all positive feelings toward other people you might have), you have to learn how to confidently say “No” with no regrets to situations/people where it just does not make any sense to say “Yes”.

“No” to Friend, since we all have great friends:

You have a real estate licensing exam next Monday, one of your best friends Thomas calling you Friday 11 PM and asking you to help him with a move to next apartment he is renting, he is telling you that probably it would take whole Saturday, and maybe even 2-3 hours on Sunday. What would be your answer? You are only 70% prepare for the exam. From one side, because it’s your old and good friend – you just have to say yes, because Thomas helped you so many times in your life, but from another side:

  • Thomas should call at least a few days earlier (..and ask if you have any other plans);
  • You are not 100% ready for the exam and you can not relax, you payed $550/per course.

“NO” to Neighbor:

One day my neighbour asked me if I need an old outside dining table with 6 chairs. My answer was: “Thank you very much Ben, but I will pass on this great opportunity”.
His was quite of surprised: “It’s for free…” he repeated few times.

  • 1. My backyard was not ready, we were still planting trees and flowers with my wife, so I did not really know how much space I have available and which size of outside table I need.
  • 2. Free does not mean you have to accept the offer, later you might be kindly asked to repay in different form and shape.
  • 3. Yes, you can damage your relationship, but your neighbour has to know that your backyard is not a junkyard, there is a difference.

This fundamental skill would tremendously help you in your life, at the end you will be able to do even more great things for other people and dedicate your time and life only toward the right needs (..and not “forced” decisions).

This skill would help you to do fewer mistakes, you would be able to stay laser focus on your core goals.

My Story
One day, I had to say “No” to my old and a very good friend. He is inspiring me for many years with his thoughtful life decisions, he helped me many times in life. Extremely hardworking gentlemen who are willing to take risks to achieve new heights, a man with a big heart.

I just joined a new company, received a higher title with a substantial pay increase and was extremely busy with new job and duties – literally I had no time to either my family or myself.

My friend, let’s call him John, decided to open a business at the new location, he was looking for some help from my side since I did help him few times with his other business ideas.

He asked me for a favor, and I had to make a really tough desition to choose between: continue my friendship (and help him) or my family (spend with my family at least few hours over the weekends).

I did not want to say “No”, to him, honestly with all my heart, but I did… He was very upset, he does not like hearing No’s in general.

We have not talked for a few years, but he called me one day and asked for advice.

I spent more than an hour talking to him over the phone, and consulted him on few serious questions, it was my pleasure. I also apologized since I had no chance to help him a few years back. He laughed and sad “No worries man, yes it was a sad moment but it’s fine it’s life, we must understand other people’s circumstances and always learn”.

I wish you all the best dear friends!