Let your “yes” be “yes” and your “no” be “no.”
When you say you’re going to show up, show up. Saying “yes” gives people hope, “no” shuts doors, and “maybe” gives false hope in most cases. If your intention with “maybe” is really a “no,” you’re better off just saying “no.” I’d rather receive a “yes” or a “no” any day than a “maybe” that people never really intend on following through with. And I don’t think I am alone in this.
Cutting “maybe” out of our vocabulary communicates our intention to people and shows respect for the time of others. Doing this gives the gift of time back to other people, rather than holding it until they see our plan was never to show in the first place. You will let people down more if you tell them “maybe” and don’t show up, rather than saying “no” in the first place.Time is a gift that we give to others. Click To Tweet
Learn to say “yes” or “no.” If your first response is to say “maybe,” then it’s time to think harder about the question someone is asking.
Some questions that will help you choose “yes” or “no” are:
How much time are you truly needing to devote if you say “yes”?
Will saying “yes” allow you to spend quality time with someone that you need to spend time with?
When’s the last time you spent time with that person?
Does saying “no” now leave you room to say “yes” to something else that will help the person asking for your time in greater ways?
In the end, we cannot say “yes” to everything, and that is why this post is needed. If we said “yes” to every single thing that comes our way, we would have no time left for family, friends, ourselves, and our very best work. That is why time needs to be treated as a gift, not as a free handout. I wish that saying “yes” to everything was the best answer, because that would allow us to spend time with everyone, but time is our most valuable resource available, and we must protect it wisely.Time is our most valuable resource, and we must protect it. Click To Tweet
So, perhaps saying “yes” is the most difficult thing you could say right now, because you are limited on your time already and you can’t imagine committing to something else right now. If this is you, then it goes back to priorities. Are you committed to what you should be committed to? Is dropping something less important to add in this more important commitment even possible?
If saying “no” is really difficult for you, then please know that “no” isn’t a bad word. In fact, saying “no” is a gift to yourself, because it frees up time for what you find most important. I’ve had to become really good at saying “no” to speaking engagements, business opportunities, and people this past year, because I found that having kids at home and what I was working on at that time was more important. (I’m terrible at multitasking.) Whatever your more important responsibilities are, be okay with the season of life you are in.