Some Things to Keep in Mind When You Say No


After receiving requests from other people, we tend to say “Yes!” all the time even if we really want to say “No!” Sometimes this could be one of the most difficult words we say in response to such requests. To avoid being in that situation all the time, according to a survey conducted in Singapore, you need to master the art of saying this word by following these ways.

  1. Be polite. If you want to turn down requests, you have to be polite in responding. As much as possible, we do not want to hurt other people and being polite can help in not making them feel bad towards you. This could also help you to not feel guilty knowing that other people don’t think of you as mean.


  1. Be straightforward. In replying, be straightforward and do not say “Maybe” or “Possibly”. Saying these words can come across as an unsure answer. Hence, they would feel that there’s still a possibility that you could or could not do things for them. To avoid conflict in the future, just say “No!” if you really are sure that you could not allocate them time and effort. Skip the shenanigans and be done with it.


  1. Be honest. You should not lie about your reasons on saying “no”. Some people have the tendency to just lie in order to get away with it but they don’t realize that they could potentially hurt other people more through it. The person you’re talking to can understand if you say the true reasons on why you are declining their request or sometimes you do not really need to tell them your reasons. You don’t necessarily owe them explanations but being sincere and honest could go an extra mile all the time.


  1. Be firm with your “no”. Be assertive with your answer and make sure that you are not second guessing or would look unsure while responding. Some people will try their best to manipulate your decision in order to get your sweet “Yes!”. So, you need to be aware of their tactics, think thoroughly and be firm with your final decision.


  1. Say it now. If you know you can’t fulfill other people’s request, then say “No!” immediately. Don’t prolong the agony or disappoint others later. Do not become a people-pleaser and say yes just for the sake of making others feel better. If you know you can’t do it or offer something more than what you can only give, just say the word and you can spare yourself from stress later on.