When you are tired and you just can’t take it anymore do you give yourself permission to disconnect? Whether it’s from your job, your family, or from your computer, learning how to say “No” when you are not feeling it is vital step in honoring who and what you are no matter how tempting the invitation to “join in” may sound.
You may like to please others more than you like to please yourself but learning when and how to put up the boundaries at work will save you not only time, but your sanity when the going gets even too tough for you. The next times you feel compelled to say, “Yes” but are stopped in your tracks, think about what is motivating you and respond accordingly.
- It’s Not Your Job. Knowing when it’s appropriate to be a “team player” and pitch in and knowing when you are being asked to stretch well beyond your limits signals a time when it may be okay to just say “No”. It’s not that you are trying to be insubordinate or problematic, but knowing that you are working and focusing your attention on the job you were hired to do does not mean you are a traitor when you are being asked to do twenty other things that will take you off your game. Saying no to handling extra work assignments or pitching in on a regular basis to help out a co-worker will prove to be your down fall if you don’t know when and decline in a way that does not alienate your team mates and piss off your overly demanding boss. Outlining your job priorities when asked to take on extra work means you are open to considering it but need to find something else to give up if you are truly needed to pitch in elsewhere. Don’t over extend your self to the point of no return. It’s okay to say you can’t handle more work if you really can’t- you are not a slacker if you can’t.
- Trying To Impress: We all want to make a good impression at work whether you are up for that promotion or just a new kid on the scene trying to score some points with the powers that be. You are up for a challenge just like the next person but when your sole motivation is to impress regardless of how much work you are piling on, maybe it’s time to rethink your priorities. Raising your hand and volunteering for everything and anything does not mean you are a team player and a rock star at work. What it does mean is that you either have too much time on your hands, or you are not sticking to the job you were hired to do. Make sure you understand the scope of what you are volunteering to help out with and whether earning a few more brownie points is worth the stress and aggravation that may come from your inability to say no to the next new thing that comes your way. You can be impressive without being oppressive.
- It’s Not in Your DNA: Some people just don’t have it in them and say “Yes” to everything feeling like they will a disappointment or will be left out of the mix. Crowd pleasing is one think but saying “No” does not mean you are retreating, It does mean you have enough common sense to know when and how to expend your energy and resources so you maintain a high level of consistent job performance without stretching yourself too thin. It may take practice, but there is nothing wrong with declining an offer that extends your limits even if that includes after work drinks with the team or taking on extra assignments when your plate is already too full. Knowing when to balance your wants with others asks is the first step in gaining confidence and learning an artful way to decline an invitation without offending anyone.
You don’t need to be a martyr when it comes to sacrificing what’s good for you vs. what’s good for the crowd especially if all you are craving is a bit of down town to recharge the batteries. If you are not able to stand up for your self and your own needs and what makes sense for you without feeling like you are letting everyone down, then you will likely run a ground and peter out way before it’s time to raise a glass to toast anyone’s success let alone your own.
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