Saying “no” is harder than it sounds because, by nature, we all want to please other people. However, saying “yes” and over committing yourself leads to major stress. So here are tips that’ll help you say no, courtesy of Body and Soul Magazine.

  • Before you can say “no,” you have to figure out what you want to say “yes” to in life. For example, if you want to say “yes” to more time with your family, you’ll have to say “no” to obligations that keep you away from home. If you want to say “yes” to better health, you’ll have to say “no” to events that’ll interfere with your aerobics classes. Saying “no” will be easier if you’ve got your priorities in order.
  • If someone asks you for a favor, buy yourself some time before making a decision. Most of us feel pressured into saying “yes” when we’re put on the spot. After all, it’s hard to turn down helping your neighbor with their yard sale when they’re staring right at you! So say something like “Can I get back to you tomorrow?” That way, you’ll have time to think about the commitment, but you aren’t leaving your neighbor hanging for too long.
  • If you decide to say “no” to someone. Try the “yes-no-yes” approach. Here’s how it works: First, explain that you’ve already said “yes” to another commitment – remember, you’ve already determined what your priorities are. Then, say “no” to their request. Finally, end on a positive note by saying “yes” to helping them another time. So you might tell your neighbor “I’m having breakfast with my kids on Saturday morning, so I can’t help you set up for your yard sale, but I’ll come over Sunday and help you clean up.” That way, you’re offering to help them when it’s convenient for YOU. Remember: You don’t have to say “yes” to anything you don’t want to do. So if Sunday doesn’t work, either, that’s okay.