“No” is a complete sentence. “No” is one of the shortest words in the human language—likely the first word issued by most of us as babies. “No” is an almost universal word, understood regardless of other language barriers. 

Both “yes” and “no” are words that make us responsible for our thoughts and actions. If we say “yes,” we’re responsible for fulfilling whatever we agreed to. If we say “no,” we must accept that another may be upset.  

It is OK to say “no” to conserve our energy and define our priorities. 

Because we’ve developed and collected a large scope of experience and connections over the years, we’re often in great demand! So learning to determine when we need to say “no” is very important. The fact is, we really can’t do all that we’re asked for a variety of reasons—and if we try to, we’re potentially increasing our likelihood for illness triggered by physical and emotional stress. 

When we need to say “no,” there is no need to over-explain or justify our position. “No” is “no.” But if, like many of us, we’ve said “yes” throughout life when we really wanted or needed to say “no,” here are four strategies for getting comfortable with using the word when we need to conserve our energy:

1) Just practice saying “no.” Get used to the sound of it coming out of your adult mouth.

2) If “no” still feels too hard, practice saying this with a smile: “Thank you for asking. I’m flattered but I can’t do it. I appreciate your understanding.” 

3) When possible, offer a suggestion. Maybe there is someone else or some other way you can envision the request being fulfilled: “I’d love to help but I can’t. Perhaps you can…” 

Then, 4) Remove yourself or change the subject.  

It is OK to say “no.” We have every right to think about our response and respond within our own timeframe if we need to think about our answer as well. Before jumping to say “OK” (another short word), stop and choose. It is OK to say “no” and move on guilt-free. Try it.

I’m @DianGriesel aka @SilverDisobedience This is an excerpt from my book, The Silver Disobedience Playbook ✨ I’m a Perception Analyst who shares my Daily Meditations for other Ageless, Passionate & Curious People.  Modeling info @WilhelminaModels —other info in my bio & on my websites.