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The Power of Saying NO… to Say YES

saying no

Say YES to Your Leadership Vision

I was saying No a lot to friends and family when I was studying for my Masters Degree in Adult Education and working full-time. I’ve said No to great client projects to have time off. I’ve declined volunteering requests too. 

Those No‘s safeguard the time and energy to say YES to the life and work you choose.

Maybe you have a vision for how you want to run your team or your business. Maybe you want to get that certificate or that promotion. Maybe you want a day all to yourself to do nothing – oh the joy of that kind of day!

Decide for yourself what’s important, and then say No to the rest.

People are often afraid saying No will make you look mean or grumpy.

But that’s not true.

Recently I participated on a panel of entrepreneurs, hosted by Hayley Bohan of Marketing on Purpose, discussing the power of saying No in our lives. They had some great ideas.

1 – Start by saying YES to your goals. Make them measurable. Create a strategy and timetable.

  • Do you want to increase sales by 3%? How are you going to change how you allot your time and energy?
  • Do you want to expand into a new market? When? How? What profit margin do you want?
  • How about saving for a two-week beach vacation so you can perform better once you return to work?

2 – Place your goals where you can see them. Every day.

Why? When you need to make a decision, look at your goals. Is it in alignment?

3 – Then don’t say NO. (What? Are you crazy? You just said to say No?)

Tell them what you can do instead. 

  • We’d like to ask you to speak for two hours about the value of strategic planning.
    I can develop a two-hour hands training for staff, or I can facilitate a strategic planning session for you.
  • Can you get me that project by end of the week?
    I can complete the project and send it to you next Tuesday.
  • Would you like to join our volunteer board?
    I focus on my volunteer work in other areas. Thanks so much for the offer.

4 – Congratulate yourself. 

Saying Yes and No is a muscle we build with practice.  Every time you make the right decision, congratulate yourself. No one said change was going to be easy — only that it is worth it!

What is your new YES or NO decision this week?

Catherine Doucette MEd, CTDP is a Training and Performance Consultant who delivers customized business communications and leadership programs that produce measurable results. 

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