Success Principle 42 – JUST SAY NO
I hope you will like this quote:
“You don’t have to let yourself be terrorized by other people’s expectation of you”
Our world is a highly competitive and overstimulating place, and more and more concentration is needed every day just to stay focused on completing your daily tasks and pursuing your longer-term goals. Because of the explosion of communications technology, we are more accessible to more people than ever before.
Complete strangers can reach you by telephone, cell phone, fax, regular mail, express mail, and email. They can email and instant-message you at home, at work, and your hand-held computer, if you’re not there, they can interrupt you with call waiting.
It seems everyone wants a piece of you. Your kids want rides or borrow the car, your coworkers want your input on projects that are not your responsibility, your boss wants you to work overtime to finish a report he needs, your sister wants you to take her kids for the weekend, your child’s school wants you to bake four dozen cookies for teacher open day and be a driver for next week’s field trip, your mother wants you to come over and fix her door, a local charity wants you to head up the annual luncheon committee, and your neighbor wants to borrow your van to pick up some goods at the supermarket. Even your pets are clamoring for more attention.
We suffer under project and productivity overload at work – taking on more than we can comfortably deliver in an unconscious desire to impress others, get ahead, and keep up with others’ expectations. Meanwhile, our top priorities go unaddressed.
To be successful in achieving your goals and creating your desired lifestyle, you will have to get good at saying no to all of the people and distractions that would otherwise devour you. Successful people know how to say no without feeling guilty.
If saying No is so important, then why is it so hard to say? Why do we find it so hard to say no everybody’s requests? As children, many of us learned that no was an unacceptable answer. Responding with no was cause for discipline. Later, in our careers, no may have been the reason for a poor evaluation or failing to move up the corporate ladder.
Yet highly successful people say no all the time – to projects, to crazy deadlines, to questionable priorities, and to other people’s crises. In fact, they view a decision to say no as equally acceptable as the decision to say yes.
There are lots of valuable techniques you can learn that will make it easier to say no without feeling guilty. I recommend you read one of the several good books that address this issue in greater depth than space can contain here. The two best books on this subject are: When I say No, I feel Guilty, by Manuel J.Smith, and How to Say No Without Feeling Guilty, by Patti Breitman and Connie Hatch.
Remember that even the bible says in Titus 2:11 that the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us to say NO….