The main reason why we are having a hard time declining other people's requests is that we are afraid to be rejected. We are afraid that people might think negatively. It's a heavy burden to carry because with the urge to say yes also comes a lack of self-confidence and self-value.
MORE IDEAS FROM How to Stop Saying Yes When You Want to Say No
You can decide to interpret rejection as evidence of someone’s perception rather than as evidence of your flawed nature.
The area rug that is beautiful to your best friend might be hideous to you, and that’s okay. Everyone is entitled to his or her own opinion, but an opinion doesn’t determine whether a rug is truly pretty or ugly. The rug just is.
You have to be able to pick your shots. And if success doesn’t earn you the right to say NO, what kind of success is it? If you’re not strong or free enough to pass on things, are you really that strong or free? In fact, really caring about your work is a great reason to need to be able to say NO to stuff.
Just because you’re offered something that might be good for your career, that would feel good to your ego, that most people would have said YES to, doesn’t mean you have to listen to your ego and accept the offer. You can say NO. It’s easy to forget that, especially with peer pressure and FOMO, but it’s true. Saying NO is a rich feeling that’s only tangentially related to money.
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