How to Say No
This is not medical advice. Seek a professional.
“I’m a people-pleaser.” “I have the worst time saying no to people.” “I’d rather just give in than say no.” “What if they get mad when I say no?”
If you’re someone who struggles with being assertive, you most likely hate to say no. You’ve got a million reasons to avoid saying no, resulting in you feeling walked over, ticked off, burnt out, and beaten down.
Your goal to “not make waves” by saying no creates a tidal wave in your spirit.
No, not fun.
How to Start Saying No
1. Determine to check in with what YOU need and to wait before responding to people’s requests.
2. Practice saying no in a simple, direct way. Perhaps write it down. Keep it direct, simple, and honest. No need to over-explain.
3. Remind yourself that you have the right to say no; you are not a “bad” person for asserting yourself.
4. Develop a list of coping skills that will help you self-soothe. If you happen to feel unnecessary guilt for saying no, or if you get anxious, the skills will help you as the feelings to pass.
Check out The Anxiety and Phobia Workbook by Edmund J. Bourne, PhD for more information.