How To Say No Without Feeling Guilty

By Stephen M

In times of need and difficulty, we all wish to be there for each other. Yes, many people desire to make themselves available whenever someone needs help. But sometimes we are constraint by personal activities and limited resources; hence, we have to turn down some invites. The problem is, how can you turn down or say no to a help call without making the person feel offended?

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Saying “Yes” creates good neighborliness. However, learning how also to say “No” can balance your life.

Place Value on your “Yes”

It is better to say no than to promise and fail. Before saying yes to a request, be certain that you have it in your power to fulfill it. This is when being realistic comes to play. The request must also fall within the activities or events you prioritize. Don’t exaggerate your capabilities or pile up requests to later find yourself wanting. As such, you need to consider that your time is valuable. Especially when it comes to requests periods. List the most important ones that suit your value and allocate a timeframe for them. If you have extra time, you can then accept new requests.  Doing this helps you to honor your request, have time for yourself, and avoid over-committing yourself to other people.

Turning down a request

Saying no to a request, especially one from a close person, can be very difficult. It’s important to polish your communication skills and be firm with your requests. Here are some tips to turn down requests.

Be honest

Honestly, tell the person that you don’t have enough time to complete the said task or above your capacity. Let them know that picking it up would delay the expected completion period or exhaust you.

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Communicate value

You should know that before someone calls for help, it should be something significant to them. You, therefore, need to appreciate that and let them feel you acknowledge the importance of their request before saying no.