We all want to learn and succeed, our pace never slows down, we know we can juggle and accomplish amazing things, and because of this, we’re sometimes guilty of over committing.

So what could we do? We need to learn to say no.

To be truly successful:

  • We need to have balance.
  • We need to set boundaries.
  • We need to have clear priorities.
  • We must never compromise our ability to deliver high-quality work.
  • We must be able to say “no.”

The Consequences For Saying Yes

Saying “no” is difficult for many of us, but this simple word must be incorporated into our vocabulary. We need to understand why it’s difficult for us, and the ramifications for not saying no.

There’s a need to realistically assess if other equally important tasks may be negatively impacted if you say “yes”, and you must consider how many more work hours you’re willing to commit to. (Or how many additional hours you’re willing to be away from our family/personal life).

Learn to Say No

When someone makes a request of your time you can counter-offer: I’d love to support that initiative; can you look at my current workload and help assess what could be reassigned elsewhere or postponed?

If necessary, make sure your boss understands your workload and ask them to help you assign priorities. What falls to the bottom will need to be reassigned, or the level of commitment and due date changed.

If someone wants your time now, learn to say “now is not a good time,” and then respond with a few times that are good. Or say “If it must be now, I can give you 5 minutes,” and then set a date and time for a more in-depth discussion.

Time Mastery

Have a plan in place to handle distractions and interruptions, and to master your time.

1. Know how to prioritize, be willing to re-prioritize, and commit to your decisions
2. Set boundaries based on your priorities and say no to those outside your boundaries
3. Be open and flexible, but realistic
4. Practice your responses!

Be true to yourself and your priorities and don’t compromise quality. Remember that over-using a strength (our desire to achieve), could result in a weakness, and it will likely increase stress levels!

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