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“No” is a word that can save you time, energy and precious resources when you know when and how to use it purposefully. But many people have a difficult time saying “no” because they sincerely want to help and don’t want to disappoint others. So they take on more than they can handle, compromising the quality of performance, neglecting their own priorities, and burying themselves under mountains of responsibilities, tasks and activities that will never lead to their ultimate vision. That’s why it’s important to know when to say “no” – so rather than react to other’s demands, you respond based on your values and priorities.
One of the biggest reasons people have a difficult time saying “no” is because they haven’t clarified their own intention; other people’s goals become more important than their own in the absence of a specific vision.
Here is one question that will support you in determining when it makes sense to say “no” – ask yourself: Is this essential? And by essential, I don’t mean necessary or required. Rather, “essential” means, is it “of your essence” based on your values and vision? In other words, will this task lead you quickly and effectively to the best result that is aligned with your highest intention? If not, the answer is clearly “no”.
Learning to say “no” to non-essential tasks creates a path to freedom and success. It will clear your schedule of mental clutter so you can harness your life force and focus your attention on the realization of your goals. Having a clear vision and a strong sense of purpose gives you the discernment to know which actions yield the greatest return on investment for your time, energy and resources.