It’s slightly ironic to have a #ClarityGem that’s all about saying “no,” directly on the heels of one that was about saying “yes.” But that’s life, isn’t it? For every “yes” you give, you’re saying “no” to something else, and vice versa.

So today, we’re talking about what it means to deliver the best kind of “no” … the one that comes backed by oomph, confidence, and no justification necessary.

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No matter who we’re coaching, there comes a point in almost every coaching relationship where we hear a client say, “How do I say no to people?” Doesn’t matter if they want to turn down more work, an invitation, or something else … everyone seems to feel a bit squeamish about it.

And we always share two big points with them:

1. Not wanting to do something is ALWAYS reason enough to not do it.

We’re not sure where everyone got the idea that saying “no” makes us uncaring, callous, or a “bad friend” or “terrible employee.” Most of us are so afraid of feeling like a “bad person” that we believe we have to come up with an elaborate reason to justify saying no. Well, we’re here to break it to you: Saying no does not make you a bad person, friend, or employee. Your time and energy are just as valuable as anyone else’s … you don’t have to feel bad for wanting to keep them to yourself sometimes. And you definitely don’t need a reason to do it.

2. If you need to explain your “no” to someone, keep it simple.

We get that you might not want to just say “no” and then run away. So in that case, having a couple of built-in responses comes in handy. Two of our favorites are, “Let me check on something and get back to you” (this is great for spur-of-the-moment things that catch you off-guard) and “I’d like to say yes, but I don’t have the bandwidth to do that justice right now, and I think it deserves to be done right.”

Whatever you do, don’t over-justify your “no.” The more you talk around it, the less power your answer has. And keep in mind, the more you gracefully say “no,” the more you give the people around you permission to do the same. You might just start a revolution.

twitter-bird“No” is a VERY complete sentence. #ClarityGems

How is this #ClarityGem sitting with you today? Tag us @ClarityonFire on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, or leave us a comment on the blog to let us know!


Sometimes it’s just better to avoid long blog posts and cut straight to the point!

Think of #ClarityGems as your weekly shake of the good ‘ole Magic 8 Ball … you never know what might bubble up and how it might be exactly what you need to hear today.

And instead of just a beautiful, inspirational, and shareable image (which is a nice start), we’re giving you some quick thoughts about how to interpret it … because inspiration without action is pretty, but kind of anti-climatic.

Tweet it, share it on Instagram, or forward it along to someone who needs to hear it today … and tag us (@ClarityonFire) to let us know how this Gem is inspiring you!

Much Love,

Rachel (+ Kristen)

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