Notice how often people around you say no to each other every day. Also watch how others handle these situations.
When you feel pressured for a yes, ask for time. It will allow you to calm down and evaluate whether you really want to do it ( "I need to check my calendar; I'll get back to you"/ "I've got to think about that; I'll let you know.")
Saying no comfortably requires you to think what your values are. When you live by clear principles, it's easier to make decisions. People are more likely to respect your responses.
Keep telling them that you can't help them. Then stay on repeat, even if they bring new angles of reasoning.
When you want to help but can't commit to the specifics, make a counteroffer. You can offer someone a different resource or the name of someone else who might help.
Agreeing on every activity is easy and can also become our default reaction. It fills our calendars with so many tasks and we are playing a losing game thereafter, making more commitments than we can keep, and leading to unfulfilled obligations. When we are overcommitting, it is leading to us getting burned out and hurting our network in the process.
When we are asked for something, we end up reacting, rashly and impulsive, as it subtly awakens our fight-or-flight mode.
Social media has made unwanted requests and their ignoring easier, training us to quietly ignore anything we don’t like, or cannot commit to, but with the security of the other person not getting any kind of rejection.
The best way to say no apparently is to say nothing at all, at least on the virtual front.
Let go of the pretense that if you play nice, they will play nice.
Know your vulnerabilities and focus on the one thing that really needs to change: yourself. You can only control what you do.
Set some boundaries for yourself. Be prepared for the consequences and set a support system.
Memorize the list of tactics used by an aggressive person. Then it is easier to recognize the attack.
If you're willing to accept an excuse, know that they will fling excuses at you until one stick.
Stay calm and polite, and avoid sarcasm, hostility, or threats.
Without being rude, be specific about what you expect or want from the other person. Aggressives will only participate if they can get something out of it. If they have to lose, they'll make sure you go down too. Ensure you propose win-win solutions
While it can be quite scary, stepping out in the unknown is necessary every now and then.
In order to push your limits, you should consider taking up new challenges that will not only make you experience fear, but most probably also later success into dealing with new and stressful situations. Furthermore, your brain will get trained to form new connections, which can only prove beneficial in the long run.
Recent research has shown that uncertainty scares people even more than knowing that things are going to actually end up badly.
Therefore, in order to be mentally prepared to beat uncertainty, what better way than just imagining the worst case scenario? If it turns out badly, you will at least not be taken by surprise and, if it turns out well, you will be happy.