Friday, October 6, 2023

Three "N" Words You Should Use As Needed

We maneuver through life often carrying a lot of weight that's not our own. It's because we've said yes and okay to responsibilities and requests far beyond our ability to handle them well. That part, right?

One of the best skills sets we can develop is when we should say NO, when we should say NOT NOW, and when we should say NEVER.

Say "NO" Telling people NO feels difficult if we feel like we are going to let someone down who is depending on us, or if we think they will think ill of us for not saying yes. It's time to think this instead: where do I land if I say yes? Will I be inconvenienced, overwhelmed, over-committed, over my head or out of control with my own stuff if I say yes? If saying yes is more pressure than true pleasure and ease at helping someone, then the answer is a gracious, unapologetic NO. They will go on to someone else, and you will eventually get over your guilt.

Say "NOT NOW." When you can't make time and space adjustments to accommodate the requests of others, just say that it's not something you can get to right now, not at this time, perhaps another time, but NOT RIGHT NOW. Save yourself in these situations. You don't have to be everyone's go-to guy or gal. You don't need to be the one who is always saving the day, at your own expense. You don't have to extricate your availability all the time, but you do need to be very choosey. Do what really matters. Do it for those you really care about, and for those who you know really care about you. Make time and space when you can see that it may benefit you as well as them, maybe as a trade-off or as a for sure WIN-WIN. Otherwise, you may lose time and space that you really needed and couldn't afford to lose, and may find it difficult to regain again. Think about that.

Whatever you do, it's best not to say okay to something that you know you haven't figured out how you can possibly handle it, or how you'll fit it in. No time to do it? No place to get it in? No space in your day for it? A wise answer is probably "I can't do it, NOT RIGHT NOW." Take a deep breath, and if it's necessary, say "I'm really sorry, I just can't fit it in." You have to take care of yourself first in order to help others now, or later.

Say "NEVER" I've learned that some people are not at all afraid to make some ridiculous requests, some just outright crazy things, not caring how it might affect your time, family, work or life. Without providing scenarios, I think we all have been there when someone has asked things of us that made us look at them sideways. There is only one effective response while you are wondering if they have lost their mind, and that is to say "That's NEVER going to happen." Close the door on it. Close the conversation and say it to them again one more time, if needed. 

Those "NEVER" responses are situations that you can walk away from with no apology, no guilt either. Anyone who puts you in a place to their advantage but to your loss and disadvantage, may be someone who you NEVER want to see again. I don't know, you'll have decide. People will use you if you let them. You can let them, or you can decide to NEVER let them. I vote for you being okay with saying NEVER GONNA HAPPEN. Door closed. Conversation closed. Case closed. Don't be done in because someone may think you're easy prey for getting what they want. NEVER let that happen.


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