“And it comes from saying no to 1,000 things to make sure we don’t get on the wrong track or try to do too much. We’re always thinking about new markets we could enter, but it’s only by saying no that you can concentrate on the things that are really important.”
Saying no has always been a challenge for me, but it especially came to light this week, when I was faced with three speaking engagements – two of them needing all new content. One was a real struggle for me, and I found myself becoming very resentful of the entire thing. The problem was, I never should have said yes to the engagement in the first place. It was not at all a group of my ideal clients, the event was nearly an hour away, and I was not being compensated for my time.
All this because I could not say no to a former colleague and friend who had felt I would “be the perfect person to talk to this group.” It wasn’t his fault for asking, but it certainly was my fault for not politely declining.
Saying no is often difficult for many of us, particularly those of us who always try to do too much. Looking at my current “to do” list, I can identify at least five items where I should have said no.
Why do we have trouble saying no? For me, it’s often not thinking an offer or opportunity through– just jumping right to “sure, be glad to do it!” Or sometimes my ego gets in the way, and I’m so thrilled to have been asked, my immediate response is “of course, I would love to do it!” Even when the opportunity doesn’t have even one of my ideal clients in the audience!
Where do you struggle with taking too much on, and not being able to say no? Is it in your business, your personal life, your community involvement?
It’s often said that the best way to get a job done is too give it to a busy person, but it is also important to apply a little strategic thinking to our commitments. What is the benefit from taking something on? And if we add more to an already full plate, is it something that will help us serve our clients, grow our business, or meet our personal needs? It’s always wise to take a few minutes to think through an offer before the proverbial “of course I can do it” passes our lips.
The silver lining in all this for me was the wake-up call to that I need to take the time to more fully consider new offers and opportunities, rather than always saying yes. Sometimes the real power is in saying no.
Mandy works with talented, bright, high energy self employed professionals and very small businesses who struggle to market their business effectively, stretch their capacity and play a bigger game. And who would like to overcome their fear of sales, change their mindset, increase their self-confidence, and create a step-by-step strategy for taking their business to the next level. Mandy’s client’s receive proven, specific information on what they need to do to get more clients and grow their business. As a result, those who coach with Mandy increase their business, get more clients and make more money, faster and easier than they ever would have on their own. Mandy offers one-on-one coaching and consulting, as well as facilitates workshops and teleclasses and speaks on a variety of topics.
Get a copy of her free Cd “7 Productivity Secrets of Successful Entrepreneurs” at www.mandyschumaker.com. Or contact her at 207-653-6977