Saying no has been a resolution of mine that I still feel bad doing. Yet, this ability frees people up and allows the requestor to look for alternatives.
In fact, I think I should say No more often, for any of the following reasons:
- I don’t know the requestor well
- I don’t know the beneficiary of the request well, or at all
- My time is limited, and doing such things is not on my priority list, even if it seems important to the requestor
- The last thing I want is more stress from having to live up to additional expectations of carrying out the favour to someone else’s tastes
- The requestor is presumptive in attitude, or tries to make me feel guilty for not helping.
I also say no to last-minute social invitations which require me to reschedule my plans and compromise on other obligations.
There are so many more compelling things on my To-Do list like learning new skills, doing research on trends, personal administration, spending time with other people… that it doesn’t make sense to bite off more than I want to chew, for something that doesn’t matter as much to me as it does to the requestor.
I still like helping people, but it really has to be within reason. In essence, saying No is about enforcing one’s boundaries, managing time and also people’s expectations.