The art of saying No

Come let’s have a beer.

No, I can’t. Got to wake up early.

Come Na..just a pint. You can sleep then.

No yar, one pint will not be the stopping point.

I promise you. Not a drop more. Chal aja.

Ok. Just one but.


You understood right. Let us consider it was you saying no and a close friend of yours saying please. You just won’t be able to say no. And will you be waking up the other day on the time you had decided? Will you be able to go for that jog you have been planning the whole day? Will you be able to resist promising yourself to not do this stupidity again? And guess what, this cycle goes on.

A man may not break promises he made to others, but he definitely breaks promises he made to himself. And the reason why he so easily does this, there’s no one watching or shaming you. Except for yourself. But yourself doesn’t matter. This one habbit we have picked up as child’s, impressing the world instead of impressing ourselves, is the sole reason we are not happy with ourselves. Many of you wake up to the thought of putting efforts in getting a better shape or having better food habbit. As the day progresses, people come along and offer you various stuff which you don’t want, but, just can’t say no. Only if I could say no. But can’t. He/she will feel bad. What about yourself? Don’t you feel bad for breaking the promise you made to yourself just a few hours ago. Haven’t given much thought to this idea, have you? Just kept going the mile pleasing others. Because that’s what everyone says right, please others, make everyone happy. But does it mean you have to do this at the cost of your own happiness? I think not. If the person in front of you can not understand the commitment you have made to yourself, the person is to blame here, not you. Learn to respect yourself first and only then can you actually, wholeheartedly try to respect others.

There are 24 hours in a day for you and for the person in front of you. If he’s making sure that his wish of distributing sweets to everyone around the block comes true. Why can’t you make sure that your wish of not eating a sweet for the day stays put. How is not having one sweet going to offend the other guy? But no, gotta eat the sweet, what will he think? He will feel sad. He may or may not. Do you feel sad? What’s at priority here? Your promise to self or the box of sweet getting over? If you feel so much about the other person why don’t you just give him the reason for not accepting the offer. You can do that. Your friend will understand.

Learning to say no is not about feeling empowered, it’s about realizing what your priorities are and where your energy gets utilized. You had a plan to visit the NGO next door this Saturday but your friends call up asking you to come along on a road trip. The plan sounds too tempting. You forget about your promise to yourself of not wasting another weekend on stupid stuff and utilizing this one for doing something noble. Your energy got wasted. Your time got wasted. Wasted not in the sense of going out with your friends was wrong, but going to that NGO and helping a few underprivileged kids learn better would have been a lot better utilization of time. You know it and also you regret over it that night. But another day shines and you have filled that regret up your sleeve. Next time you won’t even try to do something as such because you know you are weak. You have trained yourself to stop trusting your promises and priorities. You have trained yourself to let yourself down. A bad thing to do.

It’s not late though. You can always change this. Learn to say no to the things which you don’t really want to do. Learn to utilize the limited time, energy and enthusiasm you have within. Projected the right direction, this same energy and time is going to make that difference which you think is not your cup of tea. Maybe you are so busy pleasing others that you gave forgotten the pleasure of pleasing yourself. Yeah I know, pun was intended there. ☺

Think. Do.