There’s Life in Saying No, Say It Often


So far today I haven’t said No to anybody. That means I’ve had an easy life so far today. I’ve seen so many souls wrecked before my very eyes because I said No when all they expected to hear was Yes.

It’s easy to say yes; will you cook some different recipe for me tonight? Yes! Will you babysit my three kids for me over the weekend so I get the chance to attend some program? Yes! Take me out tonight to someplace exquisite. Make me feel like a queen, spoil me. Would you? Ow hell yes I will.

‘Yes’ is an easy word to say. It’s easy on the heart when you expected it and actually got it. So ‘yes’ to whoever wants to hear it.

I sat with a lady who looked deep into my eyes and asked; tell me the truth, do you love me? The fact that she asked me that question points to one fact; she suspected I wasn’t into her, which was the case. She just wanted to hear it from my lips.

I looked back into her eyes and said softly; yes, I love you and have always loved you. That extended my suffering and emotional melt down with a lady who loved to cause me trouble.

Three months later she called to say it’s over. I was hurt. I should have been the one to call it quit but when I had the chance, I didn’t take it. I suffered for three more months just so she could be the one to say no.

The whiteboard of my love life has many ladies who left me. For once I could have been the one to leave someone but I didn’t take the chance. I couldn’t say no.

Esther called me one night, just some days before I wrote my final exams. Esther is an old friend who I haven’t heard from for a while. Why did she decide to call that night?

She needed me to help her do some data analysis; Joe, I know the notice is too short but please help me. I couldn’t have thought of anyone at this moment but you. If you refuse me I’m dead! (They usually end their request saying something bad will happen if you don’t say yes)

My final paper was just some four days away. Esther wants her data analysis done in three days. What do I do? Say no and tell her why I can’t do it, right? But she said I’m the best person she could think of. She said she will die if I don’t do it. Esther is a friend, I can’t afford to attend her funeral just yet. I said yes!

Within those four days, I died just so she could live.

One thing about ‘Yes’ and ‘No’ is that you can’t say one and leave the other. When you say ‘no’ it means ‘yes’ to something else. When I said yes to Esther, it meant no for my personal freedom.

It meant no to having a full week of studies before final exams. Anytime you say ‘yes’ to something you know you can’t do, it only means one thing. It only means you’ve said no to a good feeling.

Then Francisca came along. She was young but very intelligent. She always wanted us to hang out so we could gossip about passers by. It made her laugh and I was happy to do that. But I had Sam. A friend who I always had to say yes to.

Sam will come to me after work discussing problems. Anytime he came around, we had to leave the house and go solve a problem. I loved him. He was a beautiful friend.

Francisca was dying inside. I’ve given her a lot of excuses each day and she was fed up. Sam’s issues were urgent. sometimes life threatening. Francisca wanted to laugh. Urgency first, right? There’s always tomorrow and we can laugh. I chose Sam.

Say NO to these. Always!

#1. When it hurts, say no

#2. When it doesn’t improve you as a person, don’t say yes

#3. When you are tempted to say ‘Maybe’ actually you should say no because that’s why you couldn’t say yes in the first place

#4. When you have to stoop so low to achieve whatever is being requested, say no

#5. When it tortures your emotions especially relationship issues, say no

#6. When the correct answer is no, say no

#7. Say no to people who are not right for you

#8. Say no to everything you wouldn’t want to do willingly

#9. Say no to foods that give you Diarrhoea(I needed special help to be able to spell that last word)

#10. Say no to all of the above

You are not responsible for how people feel or how they react when you say no. You are only responsible for your word. Your ‘no’ or your ‘yes’.

I didn’t know this earlier. For so many years I’ve walked through each day saying yes to people who didn’t deserve it. It’s always difficult for me to say no. I don’t want to be the bad guy who didn’t help a friend in need. I don’t want fingers pointing at me.

So I would say yes even if it kills me inside. ‘Yes’ was the default word. Sometimes I even say yes before they complete the request.

READ ALSO: How You Can Develop The Power To Ask For Anything You Want From People Who Can Help

One morning I looked at Sam’s face and said no! I walked away. I didn’t look back at him. I was scared I will feel pity for him. I got home and good things started happening in my life.

I felt free knowing I’ve conquered my fear of saying no. I called Francisca and said yes to her. She sensed the happiness in my voice. Some minutes later, she was with me in the house. Then she said;

“Take me out to someplace exquisite. Make me feel like a queen, spoil me. That’s the right way to apologize for all the ‘Nos’ you’ve said to me.” I was broke. I said No!


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  1. You are sometimes even seen as a wicked person after saying no…not easy!

    • It’s not easy that’s why people often don’t say it. What if ‘no’ is the truth? would you still not say it because you’ll be labelled as wicked? Then you’ll become a liar too, right? -smiling-

  2. Nesta its very difficult to say no especially if the request is asked in person.

    • It’s even more difficult when the person making the request is someone who has helped you before but the question is; will you die just so someone’s request would be fulfilled?

      When you say no, people rather respect your stand than to say yes and you don’t do it. . My dear it’s better to say no than pass through stress to satisfy someone’s comfort

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