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The Sykes Group
2476-115 Nimmo Parkway
Virginia Beach, VA 23456
How to Set Boundaries and Say No to Achieve More
Success in Your Life!
By: Joy Fisher-Sykes
We are constantly
bombarded daily with requests for our time. While helping others can be
very rewarding, at the same time we can feel distraught about constantly
obligating ourselves to others while not fulfilling our own needs. We can
feel distressed about constant commitments to do things we simply donít have
the time, energy or desire to do.
At times, we may immediately feel the urge
to say no, but instead lose our courage, and concede yet again. The
question is why? Is it because:
You fear you wonít be liked or feel a strong
need to please everyone
You have to always keep the calendar full so
you feel needed and important
You undervalue the need for down time and
forget simply not wanting to do anything is a legitimate reason to say no
You would rather not deal with the
consequences of saying no and all the feelings that come with it.
Setting boundaries and
saying no is taking personal responsibility for your well-being. This
requires you to clearly speak up, and specifically ask for what you want.
Your decision to say no to requests from family, friends, and co-workers
doesnít have to be filled with feelings of uneasiness and guilt. It fact,
itís important you remember the decision to say no is strictly a personal
choice Ė yours!
Whether at work, with
family, or friends, you can say no with diplomacy, tact, and respect. Here
some ways you can embrace your personal power and assert your right to say
Be sure you have all the facts
Before making a commitment, be sure you have a
complete understanding of exactly whatís being asked of you. You may feel
confused because you just donít have enough information to make a decision.
You have the right to ask as many questions as necessary.
yourself ďIs this a unreasonable request?Ē
When someone makes a request, he or she is
usually tuned into ďWIIFMĒ (Whatís In It For Me). People are not
necessarily concerned with whether or not a request is in your best
interest. If you feel hesitant, trapped or otherwise uncomfortable Ė go
with your gut and say no. These uneasy feelings probably indicate saying
yes isnít best.
Take Your Time
There is no law that says you have to
immediately obligate yourself to someone when asked. Take your time before
you make a final decision. Simply say ďI need time to think about this.
Iíll get back to you.Ē
Setting your goals will make it easier to say
no. Establishing priorities makes it easy to decide how much time you can
devote to others without sacrificing your own needs. You will be more
comfortable declining requests that conflict with your priorities.
Speak up - without excuses or apologies
When you have all the facts and decide say no,
say no calmly and firmly. An assertive tone of voice, body language, and eye
contact lets others know you are serious and definite in your decision.
Donít be meek. Say
no directly without excuses. Excuses make you appear as if you arenít in
control of your decisions. If you say ďIím sorry butÖĒ this only weakens your
stand. If you have decided saying yes is not in your best interest, no
apology is necessary.
What if they wonít take no for an answer?
If someone wonít take no for an answer, repeat
your position. Maintain your stand and donít allow yourself to be manipulated
or strong armed. No means no and you have the right to stand by your choice.
about your decision to say no
Feel calm, confident, and comfortable with your decision to say
no. Be secure knowing itís enough to say no simply because you just donít
Remember, learn how
to say no is a win-win situation for everyone.
Take Time to Create a Life Balance Sheet for Success
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Environmental Stress (Part Two)
Set Yourself Free
Five Ways to Reduce
Environmental Stress (Part One)
How to Set Boundaries and Say No
Adversity: Your Seed of
Greatness (Three Secrets to Using
Adversity to Become Great)
Connect the Dots! Your Roadmap for Success
Every Super Hero Needs Theme Music. Whatís Yours?
Five Secrets to Creating a
"Goal" Medal Life
Five Secrets to
Creating a "Goal" Medal Life - Part 2
Action Steps to Motivate Yourself to Great Accomplishments
Delegate to Accelerate Success
(How to Prepare
Yourself and Others for Success)
Appreciate to Motivate
(The Key to Successful Team Building)
Greatest Gift of All - The Gift of Empowerment
Goal Setting Secrets to Jumpstart Your Life
To learn how to "Set Boundaries and Say No" go the following links:
Fall into Success 2004
Empowerment Workshop Series
Say No and Achieve More
Assertive Communication Skills
Call us at 757-427-7032 or e-mail us at
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Joy Fisher-Sykes is a
author and professional speaker published in the areas of communication, time
management, and teamwork. She works with business and government
organizations who want to reach the next level of success and individuals who
want to perform at their best. You can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org,
call her at (757) 427-7032 or visit her Web site at
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