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  • Writer's pictureP.E.T. South Africa

3 Steps to avoid a dishonest "yes"

A desire to please and not to hurt someone else's feelings are often the driving forces behind a dishonest "yes". When you agree to do things you don’t want to do, it can leave you with a feeling of resentment towards a friend, colleague, family member and yourself.

Probably one of life's greatest challenges is learning how to confidently say "no" to someone without feeling guilty about it. It's not always easy, and chances are that you will struggle but you owe it to yourself to at least try.

You need to find a balance between meeting your own needs and helping others meet theirs. Here are three helpful steps to follow when responding to a request you want to decline.

Take your time

Don't pressure yourself into thinking you should respond to a request immediately and positively. Rather tell the person that you need to think about it and that you will respond soonest. Allow yourself some breathing space to ask yourself the important questions.

Explore your wants and needs

Ask yourself:

  • “What do I want?”

  • “How much of my time, energy, and resources am I willing to give to help this other person meet their needs?"

Be assertive

Whatever you decide, you should always be assertive. Hopefully, the questions above have given you a clearer sense of what you need and want; all that's left is to make it clear to others by responding directly and honestly.

By effectively self-disclosing how you feel and expressing the honest reason for your decision, your response will leave little room for the other person to question, argue, or doubt your decision.

People might not like your decision at first but will in time respect you for your honesty. If they don't, then perhaps it's better to reconsider the relationship?


Disclaimer: The information contained in this communication is not to be construed as medical advice. Consult a professional on any medical or psychological concerns. The articles and blogs are posted only as opinion or ideas, and are general in nature. The administrator takes no responsibility for any action or outcome a reader may make as a result of reading a post.

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