Productivity Tips

How Saying No Can Change Your Life

Hey Busy Bees! I'm so excited to dive into this topic today! I made a poll over on my instagram about what you'd most like to hear about and the overwhelming vote was how to start saying no! 

Why is it so hard for so many of us to say no to things we really don't want to do?

If you're anything like me, it comes from a need to please others.

This is something I've worked on over time, and I've already begun to see the benefits. 

How can be purposeful, fulfilled and productive in the things that truly  matter if we are scattered in 10 million directions?

This idea was completely solidified in me when I read Essentialism by Greg McKeown! In the first few chapters, he talks about an essentialist mindset vs. a nonessentialist mindset. Essentialist prioritize and focus on what's truly important, and non essentialists try to do ALL the things. This diagram makes it really easy to see how we're spending our energy, and where it is going!


Mckeown says that "only once you give yourself permission to stop trying to do it all, to stop saying yes to everyone, can you make your highest contribution towards the things that really matter."

How many times do we feel completely spread thin and feel like we're not REALLY getting anything accomplished?

The key is being in touch with your mission and your unique work in the world, and prioritizing your time. How can you cut down on the extra fluff, or the things you don't really want to says yes to?

It starts by saying no.

Greg McKeown says that there are 3 steps to say no gracefully. The steps are:

Step 1: Affirm the relationship. e.g. “It really is good to hear from you.”

Step 2: Thank the person sincerely for the opportunity. e.g. Thank you ever so much for thinking of me! It sounds like such a brilliant project. I am complimented that you thought of me.”

Step 3: Decline firmly and politely. e.g.For several reasons I need to pass on this at the moment.


Remember, if you don't prioritize how you spend your time, someone else will.

Whether it's your friends, your job, your business or your volunteer work, it's so important to prioritize what's important and stand in your power to say NO to things that don't serve you. 

The truth is, we can't do it all.

When we try to do it all, we feel stressed and overwhelmed. We feel unsatisfied and frustrated.

When we do less, we feel fulfilled and productive. Less is really MORE!

The last tip I'll share is to ask yourself the following question when you are about to make a commitment. That is, "Am I choosing to, or do I have to."

Of course we all have non-negotiable things like work that we have to do, but outside of that I invite you to think about the question. Are you saying yes because you don't like confrontation or hurting people's feelings? Or is it because you really want to invest your time in it?

Time is our most precious asset, so how are you spending it? 

How will you put this idea into practice this week? Your first no might not be easy, but it will get better over time!

I know you can do it!