Why We Need to Say ‘No’ More Often

The other day at work a colleague, let’s call her Sally, came around to ask another colleague whether she could do a task for her because she was heading into lunch break now. Immediately my colleague turned to her and said, ‘no’. Bewildered we all looked at her and wondered where she took the courage from to simply say no. Sure, we all were aware that Sally only wanted to delegate her own task to someone else. However, I think no one else would have really replied with a simple no. Rather, we’d for sure have taken it up and later complained about how Sally always pushes her own work towards the others. 

Learning to say no

Don’t we all experience situations in which we’d like to do nothing more than simply saying no. Be that to working on a project you really don’t feel like working on, going out with your friends after a busy day at work or your mother asking you to wash the dishes. However, if I’d have gotten an euro for every time a friend or relative of mine did something and later complained about how they REALLY did not want to do that, I’d be drowning in Gucci belts over here, no joke.

And I very often catch myself doing just that. Saying yes to things that I really don’t feel like doing. Feeling pressured to say yes to offers that reach my inbox, friends that want me to help them on a project, or colleagues at work asking me for a favour. I’m a chronic ‘yes-sayer’ and always afraid of either missing out or hurting someone’s feelings.

The thing is, we are not born to please others and say yes to every annoying thing. I’m a firm believer that you should help out others and be a genuinely nice person. But then again, I also do not think it’s good for your personality to do everything others ask you to do. For example, I’ve had that thing a couple of months back where I literally said yes to every offer that reached my blog-inbox because I saw all the others do it and thought to myself that this must be what I had to do for success.

That is not true, though, is it? You definitely can be selective and be successful at the same time. You can say no if you don’t feel like going out shopping for a baby shower with your friend Karen if you do not want to and you really do not need to say yes to every favour your relatives ask you for. So next time Sally comes over to you and asks you to do her job, simply answer with a genuine smile and polite “no”, while thinking “For f*cks sake, Sally NO I’m not here to do your job whilst you’re walking around smoking cigarette after cigarette”.

4 Things I’m going to say ‘NO’ to from now on:

  • Going out with friends on a Friday night when I full-well know I really want to sit down with a good book and tea and have already changed into my pj’s after arriving home
  • Storing Amazon orders for my neighbours. Because a) am I never really home and always feel rubbish when they have to wait days to get their package from me and b) am I way too curious and always need to fight the impulse to rip it open and see what they ordered
  • Coffee dates with people from Instagram in order to seem nice and interested. Sorry, I don’t even have enough time to meet my real friends, let alone strangers from the internet
  • Press trips, Events and the likes from brands I am not really interested in. Sure it’s nice to get free food and meet colleagues but it’s so damn draining for me to network and I would MUCH rather just go home
What about you? Are you good at saying no or do you need some training in this area like I do? Let’s chat in the comments down below

*Photo by Jackie K. B. Ayres on Unsplash

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  • This was such a good read! I started saying ‘no’ more often this year and can honestly say life has been all the better for it! Haha, can relate to preferring staying in with warm drinks and pyjamas, rather than always heading out with friends :)


  • Danke für den tollen Post liebe Kerstin.
    Ich habe mir schon vorgenommen bei der Arbeit öfter nein zu sagen, wenn mal wieder Schichten getauscht werden sollen und mir der neue Termin eigentlich gar nicht passt, sondern ich es nur mache um nett zu sein und ich dann zu wenig Zeit für die Uni habe. Deine Punkte gefallen mir auch sehr:) Ich denke, dass man meistens eigentlich genau weiß, was man möchte und dass man dann einfach mehr darauf hören sollte, als immer darauf bedacht zu sein, es allen recht zu machen.
    Liebste Grüße,
    Sonja von https://searchingforkitsch.blogspot.de

  • This is totally something that I’m guilty of as well. I just can’t say no. I either say yes and complain later, or I find an excuse so that it doesn’t look like I’m simply saying “no, I don’t want to.” but I know I should definitely learn that. Thank you for writing this post. I think it’s a very important one.
    Lucie, xx


  • Saying no is definitely harder to do at work, you just want to be on everyone’s good side you know. But it’s good practice 😁

  • Love this was such a good post; so honest and refreshing to read! I’m completely with you on saying no more and I too have turned down trips/work just because it’s not quite right or I already know that I have too much going on already. It’s so important to put yourself first and do what’s right for you – here’s to more Friday nights in reading lovely! :)

    Hayley xo

    • thank you so much babe. true, I find it so hard to say no to these opportunities especially when it’s press trips because I know I would love them. here’s to more friday nights in reading, indeed!

  • Liebe Kerstin!

    Ich kenne solche Situationen nur zu gut :/ Eigentlich hat man viel zu viel zu tun und möchte nein sagen, möchte aber gleichzeitig nicht die Gefühle eines anderen verletzen oder ähnliches.
    In den letzten paar Jahren habe ich jedoch gelernt auch mal nein zu sagen, denn gerade in schwierigen Zeiten war es notwendig für mich zuerst auf mich und mein Wohlbefinden zu achten, denn nur so kann man dann im Endeffekt auch mal wieder Ja, wenn man um etwas gebeten wird, da man dann wieder die Kraft dazu hat etwas auch ordnungsgemäß zu erledigen.

    Liebe Grüße,

  • OMG Kerstin, du hast so recht und sprichst mit diesem Post sicher vielen aus der Seele :) Vor allem das am Freitagabend lieber daheim bleiben als ausgehen kann ich oftmals absolut nachvollziehen, obwohl es mir dabei wirklich schwer fällt nein zu sagen.
    Danke für den tollen Post, ich glaub ich überleg mir auch ein paar Dinge, zu denen ich ab jetzt nein sagen werde :)
    x Stephi

  • Soo ein toller Beitrag, liebe Kerstin. :)
    bei mir ist es auch viel zu oft die Angst, dass mir jemand böse sein könnte oder es auf mich
    zurück fällt.
    Aber letztendlich hast du absolut Recht. Es ist mein Leben und ich muss nicht alles machen, was andere mir aufzwingen wollen.

    Wishes, Kat

    PS.: Ich warte jetzt einfach, bis DU mich mal auf ein Coffee Date einlädst. ;) Hihi

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