Learning how to set limits is harder than it might seem…if you’ve been a giver of the superwoman variety, it’s easy to swing the pendulum too far the other way to complete obnoxiousness. Theres’ even a book written on how to say no – “The Book of No” by Susan Newman, PhD.
Here’s a few types of “no” to consider using when you’re about to agree to something that you don’t enjoy or have time for.
“I’m sorry, but I just can’t” – when no explanation is needed don’t give one! Explanations only invite further pressure to accept because you appear that you would if you could.
“I’d like to help, but I can’t sign on and do the kind of job you deserve.” When an important request is being turned down, this explanation conveys the importance of the project, and that you have the best interests of the requestor at heart.
“Thanks for the offer, but no. Besides you can do that just as well as I can.” Works best when you feel like your skills or good nature are being taken advantage of – just because can do it, doesn’t mean you have to or that you’re the only one that can.
“No” to Superwoman; “Yes” to Super You.