Today's thought

Saying no

You probably don’t say “no” nearly enough.

We’re all constantly bombarded by people, places, and things that are asking something of us, with varying degrees of obligation, severity, and fulfillment:

  • Strangers on the internet

  • Social media advertisers

  • Churches / in-person groups

  • Marketing emails from brands

  • Customers and clients

I find that most people don’t struggle with saying yes to things. That’s why the idea of “reclaiming your time” is so vivid lately in culture — because we’ve been trained to believe that saying no makes you some kind of grumpy, unkind, selfish person.

But, how can you really afford NOT to say no more often? Life is flashing before your eyes… do you really want to give up your precious time so freely, simply because someone asked for it (unconvincingly or otherwise)? Is the social obligation really SO strong, you’re willing to be unhappy for the sake of being likable?

Here’s a hard reset for you to consider, that I find incredibly useful in approaching this: The default is no… until you give me a good enough reason to say yes. Saying “no” more means a more powerful “yes” — when you regain power over your decision-making, it allows you to truly contemplate what matters to you.

There’s a lot more I could say about this (you know me, disagreeable Scrooge-Aaron) — but I really mean this: If you can even slightly improve at saying no to things that don’t sit right with you and focus your energy on the things you’re stoked about, your life will drastically improve.

You probably don’t say “no” nearly enough.

We’re all constantly bombarded by people, places, and things that are asking something of us, with varying degrees of obligation, severity, and fulfillment:

  • Strangers on the internet

  • Social media advertisers

  • Churches / in-person groups

  • Marketing emails from brands

  • Customers and clients

I find that most people don’t struggle with saying yes to things. That’s why the idea of “reclaiming your time” is so vivid lately in culture — because we’ve been trained to believe that saying no makes you some kind of grumpy, unkind, selfish person.

But, how can you really afford NOT to say no more often? Life is flashing before your eyes… do you really want to give up your precious time so freely, simply because someone asked for it (unconvincingly or otherwise)? Is the social obligation really SO strong, you’re willing to be unhappy for the sake of being likable?

Here’s a hard reset for you to consider, that I find incredibly useful in approaching this: The default is no… until you give me a good enough reason to say yes. Saying “no” more means a more powerful “yes” — when you regain power over your decision-making, it allows you to truly contemplate what matters to you.

There’s a lot more I could say about this (you know me, disagreeable Scrooge-Aaron) — but I really mean this: If you can even slightly improve at saying no to things that don’t sit right with you and focus your energy on the things you’re stoked about, your life will drastically improve.

Hundred Daily™ is a 100-day writing challenge by Aaron Rolston. The goal is to publish 100(ish) words daily & send them out via email. Consider subscribing if you'd like to receive daily broadcasts from me.

Aaron Rolston © 2099

Aaron Rolston © 2099