Learn to Say No

The word no can be one of the most powerful words in your vocabulary when used correctly.  Also, if you value your time, the word no will become extremely valuable to you.

You must learn to say no.  Say no to distractions, pointless meetings, meaningless work, unproductive tasks, and anything that is getting in the way of what you’re trying to accomplish.  In many cases we are afraid to say no because we do not want to hurt someone’s feelings, rub someone the wrong way or simply trying to be the nice guy trying to make everyone happy and like you.  At least, this has been true for me in the past.  The truth is, you’re not going to make everyone happy and if you continue to try to do so, you won’t get far.

So, we say yes to going to that party with a friend knowing you have work to do, or you agree to help a coworker with an assignment when you’re already task saturated.  Next thing you know, you’re running around trying to finish up what you originally had planned so your best work is not put into it because it’s rushed, and you didn’t have the time to focus.

You have to say no.  This does not mean that you must be a complete jerk about saying no, but you can find polite and simple ways to tell a colleague, friend or family member no when the need arises.

As Steve Jobs once said, “it’s only by saying no that you can concentrate on the things that are really important.”

So, quit trying to please everyone, learn to say no and focus on the things that are important.



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