“No”, is a tiny but also a mighty word. However,to say or to hear it make us feel childlike, sheepish or even in trouble. It’s a big issue for many people to say or hear”No”. We’re worried about being rejected or losing potential opportunities, we’re thinking about whether they’ll be angry, we’re afraid of losing social connection or even end the relationship, when it comes up.
The hierarchies of power existing in workplace makes it harder to say “No” in workplace. How to build strong, healthy boundaries in our social life and workplace is a continuous problem in everyday life.
It is normal to care, but when your life is seriously impacted by not having healthy boundaries, we need to pay attention. Keeping boundary is not only to care and respect yourself, but also to tell other how to be respectful.
So, it’s a hard but required lesson we need to learn, otherwise the borders between work and the rest of our lives would become increasingly blurred. Besides, researches show that people who proactively states their boundaries, such as leaving or stopping work on time, taking leave or prioritizing non-work-related activities, are much better at managing their mental health.
To learn say “No” in workplace, the key is practising saying “no” or “enough”. You can start with tiny boundaries like: “I will call you back”, when you aren’t ready or willing to say anything .
Also, there are some methods you can use to say “No” while still be a “yes” player.
Firstly, Say”No” friendly and respectful.
”Thanks for thinking of me, but I am over scheduled right now.” or “Thanks for thinking of me, but I can assure you there is someone far more appropriate than me for that job.”
Secondly, keep your “No” simple, diplomatic and candid.
Being simple like “Sorry, I’m afraid I have a family obligation that I just can’t get out of it.”
Being piplomatic like “As you’ve probably heard, I wasn’t one of the biggest fans of that project. I believe you can find a better one for its success.”
Lase but not least, being candid. Always be truthful. Lies always catch up with you.
At last, if a flat “No” seems impossible, negotiate it. You can start with “I’d like to say ‘No’” and then offer a solution that would make a “Yes” acceptable to you. A skill can be used here is, thank the person quickly and firmly for not asking you again after saying”No”. This technique is unbelievable effected, it shuts down the conversation and takes away the ability for follow-ups.
You may find it’s still hard to say “No”, the truth is it’s really hard indeed, since it has been a problem for so long time. It’s a long way to go, you need to be prepared for this. Just hope these strategies can help to save your “Yes” for things that really count.