I have failed in so many areas of my life over the last few years that I can’t even begin to count them all. For me it’s a little bit of everything. Never really completing tasks, and when I do complete something it’s only really half way complete.
This is the result of never having the time to do everything that I have committed too. I am starting to realize that I am overcommitted and overwhelmed.
Now I am looking at all the areas in my life and searching for things that I can eliminate, so that I can invest in the things that really matter.
Maybe your life feels this way too…
Are You Over-Committed?
As men, we want to accomplish everything, and we want to spend our time doing what really matters to us. We think that since we are men, we can get it all done. We tend to overestimate what we can accomplish, and have a hard time saying no to things that we are asked to do.
We also live in a “yes” culture. A culture where “yes” is the expected answer, and we feel guilty when we have too say no to a reasonable request. This can make it very hard to say no, and can leave many of us over-committed, overworked, and overwhelmed as a result.
Learn How To Say No!
At some point, we come to the realization that we can’t get it all done. We can’t say yes every time that we are asked to do something. We begin to understand that saying yes to one thing means saying no to something else. We begin to understand that saying yes to everything means putting the things that matter most to us at risk.
Maybe you are at the point in your life where you realize that you are overcommitted, overworked and overwhelmed. Maybe you are at the point in your life when you need to begin to choose your opportunities, and not try to accomplish everything. Maybe you are at a place in your life where you just need to learn to say no.
So, How do You Say No?
In the past I have said yes to many things that I didn’t have the time to do right. I said yes because I felt guilty saying no and didn’t want to offend anyone. Many times I found myself saying yes because saying no is not easy. I have found that these responses are helpful when someone asks me to do something that I didn’t really want to commit too:
1. “I’m sorry, but this is not a good fit for me right now.” This is a polite way of saying that either this is not the right opportunity for you, or it is something that you just don’t have time for right now.
2. “Let me think about it and I will get back to you.” This gives you the time to think about what you are being asked to do, consider your options, and it removes the pressure to make a decision right now
3. “I can’t do this, but I can …” This allows you to keep your options open when you are actually interested in the opportunity, and really don’t have the time right now.
I Said No, Now What?
Saying no is one step down the path to creating a remarkable life. Saying no will help you restore a sense of balance, and help you add some margin to your busy life.
When you say no, you begin to create the space that you need to step back and decide what really matters to you. Saying no is a decision that allows you to live your life in a way that prevents you from being overworked and overwhelmed.
How Can I Use The Margin That I Created By Saying “No?”
- Saying “No” Frees Up Time For What Matters Most To You – You are the only one that can determine what matters most to you. For me it is spending time with my family. For you it might be your family, friends, or even a hobby. Saying no will free up the time that you need for whatever it is that it important to you.
- Saying “No” Frees Up Time To Prioritize Your Life – Saying no to things, even great things that aren’t priorities in your life, frees up time focus on the things that matter most to you.
- Saying “No” Reduces Your Stress – Let’s face it, saying “yes” to everything is a major cause of stress. Just saying no adds the margin that you need to reduce the chronic stress that will damage your health.
- Saying No Frees Up Time For Other Opportunities – Have you ever had to say no to something because you were already over-committed? Saying no will free up the time that you need to be able to say yes to the to the things that matter the most to you.
Once you have said “yes” to your priorities in life, you are in a great position to say “no” to the things that matter less. You will have the clarity to manage your priorities rather than to be managed by them. You will have the time for the things that will have the largest positive impact on your life. You will be on the road to having a remarkable life.
Learn how to say “no” to the good, so that you can say “yes” too the best and create a remarkable life.
Question: What can you say “no” to today?