DR. E. CAROL WEBSTER’S
LEARN HOW TO SAY “NO”
E. Carol Webster, Ph.D.
Original Copyright © 2014
If your brand pegs you as a “nice” guy or gal, you may find it hard to say “No” to people even when you feel put upon and taken advantage of. You likely feel that it’s rude or unkind to refuse when someone asks for your help, so you continue to do what he or she requests of you. You must change this.
It’s OK to Say “No”
You have every right to set limits on your life so that you can pursue your own interests and desires. The needs of others’ don’t trump yours. You may fear that you’re being selfish by responding this way, but chances are more likely that your needs are going by the wayside, not those of the people who keep dumping demands on you. So no matter how guilty you feel, resist the impulse to apologize. There’s no need to say, “I’m sorry I can’t do this or that” — because you’re not doing anything wrong. Just say, “No.”
Say It Like You Mean It
If people don’t take you seriously when you try to refuse their requests, start sounding like you mean it. You don’t have to shout or yell and scream, but be firm so people know your decision is not negotiable. Don’t waffle and waiver. Say “No” quickly and with finality. If asked to “think about it,” the answer is still “No” — then move on to something else or leave the room altogether. No explanation is merited or necessary.
Fill Personal Voids
When you find that you’re always running short on time, energy and resources, understand that this is probably because you’re siphoning them all out to others. Stop and look at what you’re missing. Are you failing to grow in your own life because it’s easier to fill personal voids with others’ busywork? Are you avoiding pursuing your own interests and pleasures because you don’t feel justified in filling your life with things that only benefit you? Get some help to get unstuck. Otherwise, you can expect to be on this overly self-sacrificing treadmill forever.
It’s important to learn how to say “No.” It’s totally fine to set limits when it becomes clear that the demands of others are dominating your life. Successful people understand that their needs matter as well and that it’s possible to be the “nice” guy or gal while taking care of yourself too!
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About the Author:
Dr. E. Carol Webster is a clinical psychologist consultant in Fort Lauderdale, FL.
She is author of the book for those dealing with the stress of success ―
Success Management: How to Get to the Top and Keep Your Sanity Once You Get There,
The Fear of Success: Stop It From Stopping You! ―
the book to help you overcome fears that may be holding you back in your life and career
The Private Practice of Clinical Psychology in: Voices of Historical & Contemporary Black American Pioneers
To contact Dr. Webster visit online at http://drcarolwebster.com or call 954.797.9766.
E. Carol Webster, Ph.D.
Clinical Psychology Consulting
Mailing Address: 7027 West Broward Boulevard, #262 Fort Lauderdale, FL 33317
Reprint Policy: You are welcome to reprint this article for your personal use and to share with friends and associates.
Contact Dr. Webster to obtain permission for any commercial purposes.