Saying No appropriately is essential.
It is about being respectful and setting clear boundaries.
Many of us have been taught to ‘do the right thing’, ‘put others first’ and ‘to be nice’. Often the implication and result is we come to believe saying ‘no’ is not ok. In addition many people expect others to always say Yes! Perhaps including your self. Both of these views are not in your or anyone’s best interest! Not only is it ok to say No, it is vitally important to appropriately say No.
Saying No ‘appropriately’ means knowing what you key priorities are. It is about knowing, caring and attending to what is right for you, your values and your priorities. As well as what is not. By allowing yourself to focus your attention on what is most important, you are practicing self-respect. That is you don’t have to fulfil others needs all the time. You matter too.
Saying No doesn’t mean the other have to go without; it just means you won’t fulfil that particular request, perhaps only at that particular time. You could suggest another way they can get what they are asking for. By validating them and their request you are acknowledging both your right to say No and theirs to ask. Being respectful of others is also important.
As is fulfilling your role in a relationship. However, this does not mean saying ‘no’ is not ok. Indeed to say yes, inappropriately, that is to fail to say no appropriately, is practicing disrespect for all. Being respectful to your self is foundational to respecting others.
Saying No appropriately allows clear boundaries to be set. It clarifies what is important acceptable and not acceptable for you and or the situation. While allowing your self to be ‘distracted from what is most important’, ‘spread too thin to do justice to anything’ or ‘accepting inappropriate behaviour’ are forms of disrespect.
Identifying, creating time for and standing by what is important to you means you are being powerfully respectful of yourself and sets boundaries for what is appropriate and what is not appropriate in your life. In essence saying No appropriately is setting boundaries to allow respectful behaviour for all.
Our conditioning to say yes (be nice) is one reason we find it challenging to say No. Other reasons include concerns the other person will not receive our No well. They will be upset, or hurt, which could create conflict or damage to the relationship. The lack of understanding of the value and importance of saying No fuels these misguided ideas. Develop your understanding and apperception for the value of appropriately saying No!
To help you get comfortable with this remember you, indeed everyone, has a right to ask for what you want and who ever has been asked, has a right to say No. All an appropriate No means is, there is a need to ask someone else and or get creative with the request.
You have a right to say No!
This means others can say No too!
The expectation of a Yes denies the right of choice.