When to Say NO?

Saying no to someone can be really challenging. Especially if it’s saying no to an opportunity that sounds really great or saying no to a friend of yours who is asking you for a favor. Today we’re going to talk about when we should say no.

I know myself that I tend to be a people pleaser. So it’s a hard concept for me to get that I should be saying no more often. It’s definitely a learning process for me as well but when I talk about the situations when I have said no I started to see trends. 

Today I‘m going to share with you ten types of situations when we should start saying no so.

When It Does Not Align with Your Priorities

The first situation is when someone is asking your for a favor or presenting you with an opportunity that does not align with your priorities.

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If you do not know what your priorities are, make sure you check out my previous blog and video on goal-setting and priorities. We all have our priorities we set for ourselves. Whether that is on a quarterly basis or every six months. And if you want to work on those priorities and accomplish the goals that we have set for ourselves we have to stay focused.

We cannot get distracted by opportunities or people asking us for favors. They are going to take the time away from what you want to accomplish and delay your progress. 

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Therefore, anytime you are presented an opportunity or anytime somebody is asking for a favor, you have to ask yourself a question. Does it align with the priorities I have for myself? And if it does not, then go ahead and say no. Because do you know what will happen if you keep saying yes to things that are not aligned with what you are trying to accomplish? You are going to accomplish the priorities of other people but not your own.

When You Already Have a Lot on Your Plate

You should absolutely say no to things when your plate is already full. This should be pretty self-explanatory. However, we as women, tend to pile things up on our plate thinking: ‘it’s just a small favor’ or ‘I can squeeze it in somehow’.

And then what is happening is we end up with a broken plate. In other words we are gonna get burned out eventually. If you are not sure  if your plate is full or reaching at capacity make sure you are subscribed to this blog or my YouTube channel!  Because next week I’m gonna talk exactly about this topic in detail. 

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When Your Gut Tells You No

The third type of thing that you should say no to is when you have this feeling inside that something is off.

Maybe it’s an opportunity that’s being presented to you career-wise or something related to your site business. And you just have this gut feeling that something is not right. Something doesn’t sit well with you. There is nothing that you can really pinpoint as being wrong but you just have this gut feeling that something is not right. 

Say no!  Always trust your instincts!

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When You Feel Obligated to Say Yes

In the next situation where you should say no is when the only reason you wanna say yes is because you feel like you should. That is something that you can find examples of pretty much and you are in your life. Whether that is your career, your side business or your personal life. 

There are  situations when somebody is asking you to volunteer for something that you really don’t want to do. Or maybe somebody at work is asking you to work on a project. But you don’t have any interest in but you just feel obligated. In all those situations you feel like you should say yes, because it’s your friend or co-worker asking.  Or because it’s something that the society is expecting you to do.

You’re gonna have to learn to say no in those situations. And I think this is one of the ones we are struggling with a lot. Simply because of those personal relationships we have developed and it’s just hard to say no to somebody that you know or somebody that you like. 

But we really have to start thinking about ourselves and what we want to accomplish. Because anytime we keep saying yes to other people we are usually saying no to ourselves.

When It Means Saying No to Ourselves

Another type of situation is when saying yes to something means that we are saying no to our self-care. I think this is a case specifically for a lot of mothers. We tend to put ourselves last on the list. We will take care of our families, our careers, our site business. But taking care of ourselves is usually on the very bottom of the list.

This is where you’re gonna see those types of situations when you get asked a little favor from a friend or to do something extra at work. And you keep on saying yes to those little things.  You’re thinking ‘well I didn’t really have anything scheduled.  Or ‘it was just some me time’, and ‘I can always do it some other day’.

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But if we get into the habit of postponing our self-care our me time we are gonna get burned out our mental health is going to suffer. So if this is the area when you are struggling with I would suggest scheduling an appointment on a calendar for me time. That way if somebody is asking you for a favor or to participate in something you can easily see that time is booked on a calendar. 

You can let them know that you are busy at that time. And they don’t need to know the details if you don’t want to share them.

But make sure you take care of yourself before you say yes to other people!

When You Know a Small Yes Will Evolve

Another type of situation where you should start to say no is when you know from experience that the yes you are saying is going to evolve. What I mean by that is maybe the favor or the opportunity involves just a little work. But you know from experience that that is likely to turn into something much bigger. 

Maybe the friend who is asking for a favor has a tendency to ask for a small favor that just kind of keeps growing as time goes by. Or maybe it’s a co-worker at work who is asking you to help her on a project. However, you know that every time you have done it in the past and it turned out to be a huge time commitment.

Be aware of those situations and if you’ve got a burned ones you know it’s time to learn and say no.

10 Situations When You Should Say No To Others


When It Negatively Affects Your Family

Another type of situation where you should start saying no to is a situation where saying yes means that you’re gonna have to say no to your family.

Maybe it is somebody asking you to lead a charity event and you know what’s gonna take a lot of work. However; you know that this is for a good cause. You know  that you’re going to be helping a lot of people. But at the same time you know that your time with your family has been very limited lately due to some other commitments. And you really would like to dedicate more time to spend quality time with your family. 

In this particular situation I feel like it’s very difficult! Because you are choosing between quality time with your family or helping a community. But what we really have to start thinking about is that this particular charity event is not the only way for us to do something good for a community.  

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If you are in a situation like that, where you would much prefer to spend that quality time with your family, then maybe you can find some volunteer opportunity for your whole family. That way you can spend the quality time together and at the same time do something good for a community.

I think in those situations we really have to start getting creative don’t just say yes because you know it’s going to help somebody. There is more than one way of doing things.

When Details Are Not Clear

Another type of a situation where we should be saying no to is when we are not clear on the details of what is actually going to be involved with that situation.

It could be an opportunity that is being presented to us for for site business.  It might sounds like a great opportunity at first! But we don’t have all the details that we feel we need. Or maybe it’s a favor from a friend but again it’s that being very specific. 

Learn to say no in those situations at least until we get all the details so we can make an informed decision. Don’t say yes just because it looks good on a surface. Make sure you know all the details before you agree to something because the situation might be completely different than what you have expected.

When It Does Not Align with Our Values

Another situation where we need to say no is when it goes against our values. I think this is mostly the type of thing that will be happening at work or at your side business. where you are presented with an opportunity that you know is going to help your career. Or you know what’s gonna help your site business but it doesn’t really align with the values that you have. 

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In those situations we definitely should say no because in the end if it doesn’t align with what we believe then it really is not worth it. Because it might grow our business, it might advance our career, but it’s gonna be the wrong kind of growth.

And I can guarantee you that you are going to regret saying yes to such an opportunity.

When You Feel Like It

And lastly the situation where you should say no to is anytime that you simply don’t feel like it. You don’t have to have any elaborate reasons behind it. If there is an opportunity or a favor that is being asked of you and you simply don’t feel like doing it just say no. 

You have that right! I know it’s hard to comprehend. I know for me it is.  But if somebody is asking you whether or not you want to participate in something I think it’s implied that you do have a choice. 

Make sure that it’s something that you simply don’t want to do just say no!  

Your Turn

Let me know in the comments below if there any additional things that you think we should be saying no to. 

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Wife, mom, full-time employee, blogger. Love to travel, read mysteries, and everything chocolate. Learning to embrace the imperfections and helping others embrace theirs.

2 thoughts on “When to Say NO?

  1. This is a great post! I really struggle with saying no- mostly because I have a tendency to try and please others and I often worry that they will perceive me in a negative way. But it’s draining and taking a lot of energy from me. I like how you mentioned about that gut feeling. I sometimes ignore it and I think it’s time to start trusting my intuition more. Great post 💜

    1. Thank you Ash! I am struggling with the same thing – I tend to be a people pleaser. But the more I practice the easier it becomes 🙂 And yes, I have learned to trust my gut over the years.

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