The Spicy Meatball

How to Avoid Saying Yes to Everything

We have all said yes to something and immediately thought, "Ugh, why did I say I would do that?" If you've ever gone on a date with someone you didn't like or accompanied a friend to a party full of strangers then you know what I'm talking about. Most of us say yes to things even though we want to say no because we want to be accepted and we don't want to disappoint someone. The problem is that the more you say yes to things you don't want to do, the more you sacrifice your own happiness, which is a no-no. Sometimes saying yes is the right thing to do, but how do you know? Below is a quick self check-in you can do the next time you're debating whether or not to say yes. Consult Your Intuition Think about what is being asked of you and decide if it is something you really want to do. Don't immediately say yes out of habit or because you feel pressure. Take a moment to check in with your feelings. Usually your first instinct about whether or not you should do something is accurate, so when it doubt, go with your gut. Ask Questions Ask questions to figure out what is really being asked of you. Is this something that only you can help with? Will you feel better or worse if you do it? How much of an inconvenience is it to you? Once you have all the facts, then you can make an educated decision. Lots of people say yes without really knowing what they're saying yes to. Make sure you're clear on the expectations so that if you do say yes, you're not compromising yourself. Be Assertive If you've checked in and you think, "Nope, not interested." Then say as much. Be matter of fact without being rude. Saying something like, "Thank you for the invitation, but I am going to pass." This lets the person know that you understand what they're asking for, but you're not interested. Don't make up a lie to get out of something, but don't be a doormat. There is a balance between wanting to help someone and staying true to your true feelings. Learning how to say no to people can be difficult if you're not used to it, but it gets easier with a little practice. When you've mastered saying no, you'll feel better about giving an honest answer and you won't feel like you have to say yes to every request that comes your way.  So if you're just not feeling it, don't feel guilty, just say no.

2 thoughts on “How to Avoid Saying Yes to Everything

  1. Katie

    You are the master of this topic, Miss Spicy MB!

    You have been my inspiration to “not say yes” to everything for years now. I’m glad you are sharing this advice with others, who like me need the gentle reminder from time to time.

    The related gem you shared with me, from the sagest of women (Oprah), “doubt means don’t!” remains my shorthand consultation/meditation when I am asked for something to which I want to answer “yes” without conviction. It guides me to trust my instinct & not compromise myself.

  2. Pingback: How to Talk to Your Boss to Get What You Want — The Spicy Meatball

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