We all hate saying “No”. Many of us are born people-pleasers and especially at work we take on so much for fear of negative repercussions.
But are these repercussions really there or are they more in our own minds? And what if we could say no with really feeling like we are saying no? Would that help the demons in our own minds? Probably!
So how do we say no without really saying no? Say someone wants to have a meeting with you about something at reasonably short notice. And especially if you are a slower pace person who maximises their productivity by focusing for longer periods. A possible response may be something along the lines of “I’m very keen to chat with you about that. Would you mind if I came to see you in one hour?”
The key is to position the fact that you are very keen to help first. Then the second part is more about negotiating a time that is convenient for both.
If you are asked to be involved with something that you just don’t have the bandwidth for right now, again position the fact that you would love to help out and explain that you have other priorities right now and therefore you are unable to help out this this but offer a suggestion as to who else to speak with or negotiate to be involved but at a later stage.
So long as people know that you care, there are generally less repercussions – even among the many conversations in your own mind!