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Just Say No: Why You Should Tell Everyone to Leave You Alone

why you should say no

I know what you’re thinking, you can’t tell people no.

They come to you for help, they need you. Why else would they be asking you?

You have to help them, what kind of person would you be if you didn’t? What kind of jerk-off turns people away when they need a helping hand?

And think about how mad they’re going to be when you say it.

“Hey, could you…”


“Do you have a minute to…”


Once they hear it they’re going to stop dead in their tracks, look up at you with the nastiest glare of disgust.

They might even question you, as if your free time was designed specifically for them, and only them.

How dare you attempt to do something else! Asking you was simply a polite way of getting on topic.

But you have to stand your ground. You’re only getting push back now because you’ve been quite the plush doormat in the past.

But they’re in dire need, right?

Not really, they’re just as capable as you are.

You're Doing All the Heavy Lifting

The fact of the matter is, when people ask for “help” it’s rare that they actually need an extra set of hands. Most of the time they just want you to do it for them.

When people don’t know how or don’t want to deal with something they tend to pass the buck by making it seem like all they need is help.

It’s not until you really pay attention that you find that you’re the only person actually doing something, and they’re just overseeing it.

I’ve been a victim of that myself many times. And I continued on because it seemed easier to just get it done then to deal with the arguments that would follow if I didn’t.

And I couldn’t tell them no in the first place, it just seemed too harsh.

But I eventually had to find a way to tell them to leave me alone right when they asked because they were eating me alive.

I literally left like I was other people’s personal assistants. My time wasn’t mine, it was theirs. I couldn’t do anything I wanted to.

Taking It All Back

I wasn’t getting anywhere in life, nothing I needed to get done was completed, but it wasn’t like I was lying around doing nothing.

I did a lot. Just nothing for myself.

By then I realized that if I said no in a nice way they might actually cut me a break. Look at that, I’m actually still seeking approval to give them a no.

But it really wasn’t about approval. I get it, people don’t like being rejected, even when they trying to take advantage of you. I was just trying to consider their feelings.

After all I didn’t want to hurt them, I just didn’t want to help them the way they wanted.

When I did this, things changed… for the better. There are true benefits to leaving people to their own devices.

1. Suddenly there’ll be time to…

This is probably one of the best benefits of saying no to people.

Not having enough time is probably everyone’s biggest complaint. There aren’t enough hours in the day, you lose sleep trying to get everything done before the night is over.

Timing typically begins to get tight when you don’t put yourself as a priority.

It’s easy to put yourself last when you rationalize that your stuff can always be done at a later time. But then it just becomes later… and later… and later, basically never.

When you’re focused on your own thing you can get more done, instead of putting more off.

Just like that *poof* you have more time to do that thing.

2. You’ll be the one pulling the trigger

So, what are you doing later, after work? Oh, running over to this person’s house to help them fix their computer.

And tomorrow? Doing something else for another person.

When do you get to determine what happens during your spare time. I mean it is your spare time.

Do you even feel like you have control over your life? Of course not, because you don’t.

Other people are dictating your life with the tasks they have assigned for you.

Can you imagine having a weekend where you get to decide at any given moment what you’re going to do next without someone else chiming in?

Well now you can, you’re welcome J

3. Dreams will seem real

Right now they seem so farfetched don’t they. Like they couldn’t happen in a million, trillion years.

Well, they won’t at the rate you’re going.

You can’t even set a goal to make anything happen because you know you won’t get to it.

Why are you doing that to yourself, especially since you’re helping everyone else achieve their goals.

They wanted to get something done, and they got you to help them to do it.

But who’s helping you, you aren’t even doing the littlest thing.

When you start saying no you’ll have the ability to move your dreams to the next step, getting them closer to reality.

4. Invisible forces will protect you

I know it sounds ridiculous but it just works out that way.

Lines will be drawn in the form of boundaries and people will slowly learn to stay on their side of them.

Once you start asking no they’ll stop asking you to do so much for them, even certain things. I can’t promise that they’ll quit altogether but they’ll surely be a decline.

You won’t even have to say no as much.

It kinds of works like invisible trip wires that keep people in their place. Every once in a while, they might wander too far and trip over it, but once they realize what happened they back pedal quickly.

5. You can be you

How many times have you caught yourself doing something you don’t like to do or normally wouldn’t do to cover your friend’s a$$?

They tend to make you feel like crap if you even indicate that you don’t want to play along. But after everything is all said and done you end up feeling that way anyway.

You shouldn’t have to compromise who you are to be a good friend to anyone.

When you start letting your friends know that you cannot fudge anything or generally act in a way that defies your personal values they’ll begin to stop expecting you to do so.

Eventually it’ll get to the point where they won’t even think to ask you, finally respecting, and accepting, the kind of person you are.

6. End the use and abuse

People around you have a tendency of asking for too much. But of course they don’t think so.

They’ll sugar coat it to sound easy and straight forward. Even following it up with a promise that they don’t tend to keep just to entice you.

Like the friend who every time you guys meet up for lunch never seems to remember to bring enough cash to cover their half of the bill. Yet continues to order a la carte items.

To you covering the check or tip for a friend may seem simple and too petty to make a big deal out of.

But when you consider how many times you have saved your friend from having to wash the dishes at your favorite eatery you’ll begin to see that you’re being taken for a ride.

When it happens here and there, it isn’t a big deal. However, them doing it consistently proves that they are taking advantage of your kindness, abusing your wallet and your friendship.

Gently letting them know that you don’t have the extra dough for their half will condition them to start carrying their own weight.

And more importantly, stop using you as a line of credit.

7. They’ll live

You’re probably so generous with people because you hate to let them down. You don’t want to see them upset so you try to give them whatever makes them happy.

Even if it makes you miserable.

Pleasing others isn’t your responsibility, nor should it cost you anything.

The people in your life are not going to turn against you simply because you said no one time. Really, one time? Despite all the other times you’ve gone above and beyond for them.

The first time you say it they may give you a harrowing look, just waiting for you to change your mind but stand firm.

I promise you they won’t burst into flames. And it doesn’t make you a bad person.

Last Stop on the Gravy Train

No matter how pitiful they may look you have to give them some credit. They are completely capable of getting things done.

They don’t need you to do it for them.

If you continue to carry people by constantly letting them take advantage of you, more people are going to jump on your back. And before you know it you’ll be spending all of your time reaching other people’s goals, while your dreams fade into the background.

Warren Buffet once said. “The difference between successful people and very successful people is that very successful people say no to almost everything.”

You have control of your life and how your time is spent. It’s up to you to make every minute count and spend every hour wisely.

You can make more progress once you take back your time.


Tell me…

What plans did you cancel for yourself the last time someone asked you for help?


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About Lea

Lea is a certified life coach, foodie and lifehack expert. Don’t end up like the millions of people who gave up on their dreams, get unstuck and to the next level. Take the eye-opening Live Your Dreams course now to get moving!

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