As a part of my skilled and private progress, each January I choose a brand new phrase to be my mantra within the coming 12 months. However this 12 months, I’m just a little scared to inform you my phrase as a result of it feels actually unfavourable, particularly after nearly two years filled with negativity.
My 2022 phrase of the 12 months is “no.”
I are typically a people-pleaser, so my default is commonly “sure,” which leads me to do issues which can be helpful and great however that I merely don’t have time for. I can’t give my finest to the whole lot after I say “sure” an excessive amount of. And that will increase my stress and drives burnout.
One in all my targets, and a part of my private recalculation, is to be taught to say “no” extra usually. I’m nervous about it: I don’t need individuals to not like me as a result of I say “no” to issues. However I additionally know that I’ve a foul behavior of agreeing to issues after which backing out, and I don’t wish to be that individual.
So for the people-pleasers and overcommitters amongst us, this 12 months, let’s embrace the releasing energy of claiming “no.” Right here’s why it’s best to be taught to say “no” extra usually, together with ideas for placing this highly effective software into apply.
Begin With a Intestine Verify
One in all my favourite easy guidelines for when to say “no” comes from Derek Sivers, who wrote that in case your reply isn’t a “hell sure!” then it’s a “no.” I’m beginning to belief my intestine extra, and if I’m not instantly invested, then I’m studying to offer that chance to somebody who can do it justice.
Right here’s one other query to ask your self: Would you say “sure” if this occasion/venture/alternative had been happening tomorrow? We frequently say “sure” to issues as a result of they’re far sooner or later and we consider we are able to make the time for them. But when our hearts aren’t in it — if it’s not a “hell sure!” — then it’s more likely to weigh us down with remorse, irrespective of how far prematurely you make the dedication.
Defend Your Calendar — and Your Psychological Well being
Work out each your present bandwidth and long-term sources earlier than saying “sure” to a brand new venture. Should you don’t suppose you’ve got the time, ardour or headspace to do it properly, then it’s best to say “no.”
How to do that? Attempt “calendaring” as an alternative of getting a to-do checklist: Take a look at your calendar first to determine the place it’d match. If you have already got too many engagements on the horizon, then I feel you already know what it’s essential to say.
Or, ask your self the identical query Brené Brown’s coach requested her: “What do you wish to be held accountable for?” What number of issues can you be accountable for earlier than you drop the ball? Don’t waste time and vitality — each yours and the individual you’ve mentioned “sure” to — on a venture you could’t full.
Ask Somebody Else for Assist
I’m nearly finished with this text, and I’m nonetheless nervous about saying “no.”
After I admitted this concern to my coach, she prompt I name or e mail her for approval earlier than saying “sure” to something. Good. Clearly, I nonetheless retain the choice to say “sure” to one thing, however bouncing the thought off of another person first helps me make higher choices. A second opinion can act as an “insurance coverage coverage,” stopping you from changing into led astray by your will to please.
Studying to say “no” is absolutely laborious. But when I’m a people-pleaser (and I undoubtedly am), is it worse to say “no” from the start or to say “sure,” however then do a poor job or again out on the final minute? Which response will really make you a greater favored, extra revered individual?
I do know that, usually, “no” is the appropriate factor to say, however I’m nonetheless nervous about it, and doing so will in all probability stay laborious for me. And that’s how I do know it’s the appropriate phrase for a 12 months of true progress: It ought to be a problem.
Do you’ve got a phrase of the 12 months to share? What are you planning to say “no” to this 12 months? Let me know on LinkedIn. I’d love to listen to your concepts!
Photograph credit score: Martha Wealthy