Why saying no can be a game changer
Saying yes comes naturally to some of us, even when we have limited time for ourselves, whether it be at work or at home. Our natural state is to try and help where we can by picking up the slack, making contributions to projects, cleaning up messes or negotiating difficult conversations. What we don’t take into account is how our always-yes habit can ultimately have a negative effect on our performance due to a disruption in the balance required to succeed. Always saying yes leads to never having the headspace to figure out what’s most important, where we can improve or how we can achieve greater things. It demands more physical energy, making us lethargic and slower to react mentally. In short, saying yes to everything doesn’t work.
Why do we always feel the need to say yes? Well, some of us might be pleasers, always seeking validation by making others happy. Some might be overachievers or perfectionists, always assuming they need to be involved for things to turn out well. There are many factors in the human psyche that motivate our behaviors, the trick is to get to know your drivers and triggers and to anticipate how you will be affected by these. A great tool to discover more about ourselves is the Positive Intelligence saboteurs assessment in which our top ways to self-sabotage is revealed. By understanding what motivates us in certain situations we can focus on being more aware and minimizing these behaviors. Another step to changing the yes-man habit is to take a look at what you currently have planned. What are you working on or trying to achieve? Do you really need to be actively part of all the projects or meetings that you’ve said yes to? Quite often, when we stop to critically assess our input, we discover that our impact in certain areas is limited or insignificant. The only reason we are a part of certain things is because we didn’t decline when we should have.
A powerful reason to say no is in the return on time, energy and clarity that we get to make a real contribution to our lives or work where it counts. It doesn’t only benefit ourselves, but often, the people we say no to as well. Not having the extra manpower or support they usually get can turn out to be a way in which they become more resourceful and effective in their own ways. It can also be a good example to less experienced colleagues that saying no is perfectly okay in the right circumstances. There’s nothing more important that maintaining balance in all we do and to protect that balance we sometimes need to say yes to ourselves and no to others.
If you struggle with saying no or would like to discover what your strengths and drivers are or how to intercept your saboteurs, why not get in touch and benefit from a free coaching session with me!