5 tips on saying ‘NO’ without guilt


Saying “no’, it’s not always easy, though it’s quite essential.

You might be wondering how to say no without feeling horrible about it. To respond, you must first comprehend why individuals feel awful about declining someone. Saying no might come out as harsh, as if you’re rejecting the other person. The majority of individuals do not wish to be aggressors. It carries a bad meaning. They may also believe they are the evil person. They may feel guilty because they believe they have let the individual down.

They may also fear not being loved or being viewed as unhelpful and rude.

People who do say no frequently do it in inefficient ways that are accompanied by an excuse. “I’d want to assist, but I’m extremely busy,” they could respond. The problem with this technique is that it allows the other person to keep asking. He or she believes there is an opportunity.  “How about next week?”, they might ask.

Related: Understand Overthinking; 3 Simple Questions to Ask

It’s a valuable talent to know how to properly say “no.” Because technology allows us to have 24-hour access to our lives and the capacity to be accessible at any time has become the norm, the capacity to say no may be a superpower.

1. Say it out loud.

Don’t equivocate, make flimsy explanations, or hem and haw. This just gives the other person a chance to speak. Also, don’t procrastinate or stall. If you feel prompted, give a brief explanation; but, don’t feel obligated. The less words stated, the better.

how to say no

2. Give your justifications.

Knowing why you’re saying no is something the person you’re rejecting could appreciate. It’s sometimes preferable to be open about your limitations.

You can say things like-

I’m sorry, but I won’t be able to attend the meeting this afternoon since I’m need to fulfill a deadline.

Thank you for suggesting a trip with you. I would have loved to come but I won’t be able to swing it this summer, unfortunately.

3. Provide an alternative.

If your answer is no, you may wish to assist the receiver in some other manner out of courtesy—perhaps by proposing a different time or another choice.

For example-

I won’t be able to cover the weekend shift for you this time, but if you need a day off thereafter, I can cover for you Monday.

Right now, it’s not feasible for me to meet for career guidance, but my colleague is interested in taking on more of a mentoring role and may have some insights you’ll find useful. I’d want to introduce you. Would that be okay?

saying no

4. Saying “no” must be firm and polite.

“I’m sorry, I can’t right now,” you may respond, “but I’ll let you know when and if I can.” By shifting the dynamic, this technique is courteous and puts you in a position of power. You’re taking responsibility and promising to let folks know when and if you can. “I appreciate your asking for assistance, but I’m stretched too thin right now to be of quality assistance to you,” for example.

5. Don’t be afraid to be selfish

Prioritize your requirements. Not those of the individual who has approached you with a request. If you put that person’s wants ahead of your own, you’ll discover that your productivity suffers and animosity grows. “The difference between successful people and extremely successful people is that really successful people say no to practically everything,” Warren Buffett once stated.

It’s a necessary aspect of life to say no to people. While you are not required to provide a Plan B or an explanation to the receiver, it is frequently worthwhile to explain yourself courteously.

Read more: Why we can all learn to say ‘no’ and be comfortable with it


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