All those motivational speakers, the people persons or perhaps even the very people who’ve raised you, encourage the practice of saying “Yes” to every opportunity that comes your way.
Many two-year-olds love saying NO, but they are quickly taught that the word no is very unacceptable. We are simply compelled to agree to things, even if we are inconvenienced by them. The concept may have its perks and good intentions behind it, but from a practical standpoint, it can become toxic, to say the least.
Saying NO is a great way to control how you spend your time ⏲️ and take your power back. It’s about time you utilize the power of NO and earn more time in your day in, day out for doing what you really want to do.
The Importance of Saying NO 🙅♂️
Say NO to Stress! 😞
So you’re probably wondering how saying NO can reduce your stress levels 📊. Picture this scenario: You spoke with twenty people today and each of them asked you to do something. You agreed to every single one of them and ended up inconveniencing yourself in some way.
People would rather juggle a billion activities, even if that means taking away the time they would have had for themselves. 🤔
Overscheduling your time can bring about great chaos and stress. Learning to say no can gradually reduce your stress, as the most important asset we could ever have is ⏲️time⏲️.
We understand that the first few times it will be a little stressful, because people tend to resent you for turning them down, but the freedom you experience will soon overshadow the fear of saying no. ✊
You’ll be Perceived as More Professional 👔
We hate to burst your bubble, but you can’t do everything or be in several places at once. The people who make these requests of you already know that, and most of them are understanding enough to respect your time.
When you say NO, people tend to respect your schedule 📅 even more, because you have made yourself scarce.
Individuals usually want more of what they can’t have, because they will perceive you as more 💎valuable💎 when you are less available (as opposed to always being ‘at their disposal’).
If you already have something scheduled 📅 and cannot commit to another activity as a result, it is expected of a professional to say No. You don’t even have to provide a reason–just say that your calendar is full.
You’ll Improve at Tasks You Really to Want to Do 😄
Before you agree to spend your time doing something that may possibly make you miserable, ask yourself the following: Do I really want to do this? 🤔
When you’re not using up all your free time for someone else’s sake, then you’ll get to spend more time doing things that will actually benefit you.
Nobody wants to spend time doing things they dislike doing, but personal development teaches us to agree to these things – almost as if it’s wrong to turn them down.
Stay away from being told what you “should” do from other people, who are sometimes looking out for their best interest, not yours.
You’ll Become More Honest and Genuine 😎
When you’re kind-hearted and built to serve others, it can be tough to turn them down when they need you. You’ll even find yourself lying to them or avoiding their calls, all because you’re too afraid 😨 of their response if you were to tell them you can’t do it.
First of all, don’t be so concerned if they are upset with you because you weren’t able to drive them to the supermarket. You owe them NOTHING.
Practice honesty by being real and letting them know that you either don’t want to do this or you simply can’t because you have other obligations to attend to. It’s hard at first but once you get the hang of this, it becomes a breeze and in return, you’ll gain more self-confidence.
R-E-S-P-E-C-T is What You’ll Gain ✊
The sad reality is that ‘nice guys finish last’ because even really good people lose respect for those who are amenable.
You’re really just trying to help but even nice people will take advantage of those who say yes all the time. Admit it: You’ve probably been guilty of doing this once or twice.
There’s that one nice guy who will do almost anything you ask and you find yourself getting comfortable with asking them for random favors. On your end, you got what you wanted, but on his end, he might have really needed his time to do something important for himself. It’s okay, we’re all guilty of doing this.
You’ll begin to find folks popping up at inconvenient times, asking for favors at 3:00 AM 😴, popping up with last-minute requests and even asking you to do a solid for them when you’re sick.
Some of them even forget their manners and have the audacity to make demands with an attitude 😠.
They are so used to you agreeing to help them, that they have completely forgotten one key thing: You’re still human, hence, they’ve lost respect for your time, your wellbeing and your needs. Don’t allow this to happen.
Give Yourself the Opportunity to Say Yes… To Yourself 🥰
Choose yourself and stop choosing others. Like we said earlier, time is a valuable asset.
You need to build yourself 💪. If you learn to say no to things that won’t add value to your business or your life in a measurable way, you’ll have more time to say yes to things that do.
You Won’t Bite Off More Than You Can Chew 😩
When you agree to do 50 different things at once and then realize you barely have time for 10, you end up giving less effort to each obligation.
It wasn’t your intention, but when you have too much on your plate, you end up being unable to do the tasks you agreed to do to the best of your abilities. If you just say no from the beginning, you can avoid this embarrassment.
HOW to Say NO Thus, Saving Time 🛑
Pause, Breathe Deeply, Check Your Calendar 📅
To honestly say NO, get into the habit of keeping a Calendar. You’ll be able to keep track of all your activities this way, so when someone asks you to do something (even if it’s a case where you actually want to do it), you can give a response that is genuine, that won’t inconvenience you in any way. 👍
Make it a practice to pause, take a breath, and check your calendar 📅. Give yourself a moment and really think about what is being asked of you and estimate how long it will take.
If you do decide to take on this activity, it should be something you can comfortably start once you are done with the previous task. You shouldn’t be rushing into it.
For example: If you had a meeting at 5:00 and your friend asks you to host an event at 5:30, you can’t accept that because it won’t give you enough time to prepare.
You have to consider the time it takes to leave one location to get to the next, change your clothes, etc. You want to be there ready, looking 😎dapper😎 and well-prepared, not feeling hurried and overwhelmed.
You may find yourself wondering: How do successful people who are super-productive get so much done? The way to explain it is that they’ve found what they want to do and they do it 🤔.
Prioritizing is Key 📋
A lot of us have a bad habit of using up our time to do things that really aren’t that important. Maybe you talk on the phone to a relative every day for an hour but you really don’t want to, or you’re always running errands for that one friend.
You don’t have time to, but you don’t know how to stop it. Sit down and brainstorm 🧠 the level of priority amongst your activities. You have to gain clarity on what you need to do from what you want or don’t want to do.
Schedule Everything 📅
When you’ve finished prioritizing your tasks and activities, use a good calendar to schedule everything, including leisure time.
It might not sound romantic, fun and spontaneous, but scheduling in a date night 💑 with your spouse and sticking to it will ensure that it happens. Spontaneity is usually impossible for most people because you almost always have other obligations.
Ultimately, if something is important, it must be in your calendar. When you schedule things, be realistic about the time factor so you don’t overbook yourself.
Turn Off the TV and Get off the Internet 📺
Time flies when you’re having fun, especially when you’re engrossed in that series you’ve been binge-watching for the past few weeks, or hooked on a marathon for your favorite cartoon.
The amount of time your TV and the Internet sucks from your life these days is truly fascinating.
Now that we have Netflix, Amazon, and other streaming technology, anything we want to watch is available on demand.
Save binge-watching TV for when you’re sick 🤒, when there’s a bad storm 🌧️, or it’s that time of the month 😫. Try to limit your watch time to less than one hour a day. Only watch it if you can combine it with physical activity to help you stay healthy.
While it’s fun, try to let go of doing it. Time yourself to find out how much time you’re wasting, then set a limit. As you blink, the year will be finished, and you’ll come to realize that all you’ve learned is what happened in that last episode you watched or the best memes of 2019.
Automate What You Can ⚙️
There are so many things these days that can be automated, with the right time and money. For example, if you’re an Amazon Prime member, you can get things auto shipped to you, which will save you a trip to the grocery store.
Look up “the internet of things” and you’ll be amazed at the type of automation that exists today 💪.
When things get overwhelming, you can outsource a lot of things such as yard work, housework, and even cooking if your budget allows for it. Give yourself that added time to do what you really like doing.
Follow Your Body’s Rhythm 🧘
Many people are running around, trying to beat time and tend to waste precious energy 🥱 doing so. Our internal body clock is not set to run from morning to night like our society tells us to do.
It’s easier to do this if you have your own business, but try as much as you can to work and sleep when your body wants to, instead of forcing it out of its natural rhythm.
Your alarm clock is really there to tell you to wake up at a time you clearly don’t want to ⏰.
In the end, the key takeaway from all of this is saving time to encourage your growth 🌺. When you say NO (not just to other people, but also to yourself such as in those instances when you are being way too unproductive), you’ll be able to gain a better understanding of what you truly want out of life.
You might think you’ll always be on that treadmill of working and sleeping without any breaks, but if you schedule things better, find a better job that harmonizes with your needs, and focus on what’s important in your life, you can manage to find more free time and you’ll be more at peace 🙏.