Society Magazine

How To Say No Without Feeling Guilty: 10 Secrets From Experts

Posted on the 19 December 2020 by Naijapary

Saying No to requests most times can be difficult, especially if the person asking is someone dear to you - probably a bosom friend, sibling, lover or spouse. If you were going to say No, the thought of how the other person would feel would eventually make you comply.

NO is just a two-letter word toddlers play with, why then is it difficult for most adults to say it comfortably? The word NO may look or sound simple but it wields much power. It has the power to both uplift and cause harm.

You often give in to the requests of people to steer clear of the feeling of guilt which comes with turning down requests.

If you fall under the category of people who find it difficult to say no, then these tips are for you. You can say no without being burdened with guilt.

Let's delve in:

1. Try to Understand the underlying reason

The feeling of guilt which comes with saying no can be avoided if you understand why you're saying NO. Being able to understand this entails a deep knowledge of your priorities. Plans had already been made before the request came.

You had other commitments which are as important if not more important than the request you're faced with.

2. Be concerned

Turning down a request doesn't mean you shouldn't show genuine concern. Even if you said no, you can show that you understand their needs. You can give out words of encouragement. This goes a long way in making the person feel better, it also drives away the guilt that comes with saying no.

3. Suggest an alternative

You can avoid hurting someone's feeling when you say NO by suggesting an alternative. With this tip in mind, saying No wouldn't be much of a challenge. This shows you care enough to offer an alternative, hence no feelings would be hurt and feelings of guilt would not even come close.

You could use this line, "Oh! Sorry I'm not disposed at the moment, but I'd be available to assist you later tomorrow". This is a polite approach and allows you to take control.

4. You just cannot help everyone

Remember, your name isn't Jesus. You cannot be everywhere at the same time, you don't have all the time - the time is in limited supply. Going out of your way to help others out is fine, but you should be able to take control of things. If you were to say yes to every favour asked, what time would you have to do you bearing in mind you've got your responsibility.

Even without playing the Good Samaritan, life, as it is, is stressful and busy. This isn't to say helping out isn't a good thing, on the contrary, it is but you don't have all the time and resources in the world.

Nor go kee yourself , Do where you hand reach.

5. Know your worth

One major reason why most people can't say no is because they always seek approval from others. For some reason, they feel saying no would make people feel disappointed and annoyed. This shows that their level of self-worth is based on other people's approval.

If this sounds like you, then you need to place value on you and your time above the opinion of others. You come before others and you should treat yourself as such. You're priority , which means you're number one priority.

6. Trash the apology

Say No without apologising. You apologise when you've done something wrong. Saying "I'm sorry" after turning down a request means you did something wrong, which consequently leads to the feeling of guilt.

You did nothing wrong by saying No. You have the right to say No, to prioritise your feasibility, and respond whichever way you like to a request.

7. Know your relationships

Everyone varies in their level of closeness to you. You're going to refuse different kinds of people in your lifetime, so you should be able to define the kind of relationship you have with each of them. This will relieve you from the stress of worrying about someone being hurt because you said No. No true relationship ends because someone said No.

If someone always remembers you when they need help, don't feel guilty when you say No. This kind of relationship is nonexistent, nothing will be affected by a No.

8. Abeg Just say No

You should be free to say it. Just say No. It is your No, Nor be their own. You probably would explain your reason for turning down a request to a close friend, not necessarily to an acquaintance but saying No should be done confidently without stuttering or feeling bad. Trust me, you'd want to be that kind of a person that keeps a firm stance.

9. Persistence is key

There's always that person who will keep asking despite your initial refusal. Don't let that shake you if you meant No, you should be firm. Refuse again and again, until the person gets the full message.

10. Rehearse it

To avoid the struggle of saying No, when a request is thrown or to avoid giving a weak yes, or stupid excuses why you said yes when you should have said no, you need to rehearse saying No like it is a script. Rehearse it, practice it, create scenarios in your mind when saying No would be needed and use the No confidently. Keep practising, practice they say makes perfect.

Whenever you're faced with the discomfort or guilt that comes with saying No, always remember these tips. Most especially remember that you're priority

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