Saying NO can be the easiest thing, IF you know what you are doing!
Saying NO can be the most challenging thing to do. The fear underlying this difficulty is fear of rejection.
Typically we are scared of offending someone, or we fear them getting angry. We are paralyzed by our fear, and keep on saying yes when we deeply feel we should be saying NO. As a result we compromise our own well being, and become hypocritical.
The strategy works as a false measure of control. By saying YES, we re controlling other people’s responses and keeping ourselves hostage to our fear. We are also perpetuating deception that became a contractual hidden agreement between them and us. They have no idea we didn’t want to say YES, and we keep on pretending the YES was genuine.
In essence, we use a YES to control the situation, earn the approval of the other person, and avoid the unpleasant consequence of saying NO.
Here are some strategies you can use to make saying NO, easy:
- Be clear about what you want
If you are clear about what you want, stick to it, as it represents your truth. Often, we say YES when we are not sure of what we want and why this is important.
- Negotiate your position by prequalifying it with your global intention and by using a powerful Because to substantiate your decision.
Example: “I want you to drive me to my appointments tomorrow”
“I know how important this is for you, and I care you get this thing done. You also asked me to drive you around tomorrow, and I cannot do it because I have a couple of my own appointments, which would conflict with yours.
Having said that I have a couple of suggestions for you…”
“You always wait till the last minute and I want to you tell me these things in advance”
“I know being informed well in advance is what you want, and I care that you feel comfortable. Having said that I depend upon my job schedules before I can make any commitments and cannot promise anything beyond what I have been doing”.
How to deal with angry people…
Every person has the right to their emotions. These need to be acknowledged but not “bought into”.
Example: “You always come late and I insist you promise to be on time tomorrow (angrily)”
You seem really angry and it’s really important I be on time. I wish I could make this promise because I understand how important this is for you, and I can only promise I can do what I have been doing, Because my job is highly unpredictable. What we can do is create more room when making arrangements. How does that sound?
When dealing with an angry person, always keep in mind, they need to be acknowledged. When you restate to them how important something is to them, and restate what they told you, substantiating a NO with a valid explanation and an offer for a mutual agreement, you have taken control in a difficult situation.
If you are looking for coaching how to deal with difficult people, book an exploration breakthrough session with me, and I will be happy to help you out.