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Day #8: A Pro Hack for Text and Email Responses
"Never apologize for saying No."
“You can say that you're sorry to miss the event, but don't apologize for saying no. You haven't done anything wrong.”
Saying NO to others isn't easy.
For that reason, sometimes we feel guilty and apologize for saying no. You need to put a value on your time and be clear about why you're saying NO.
The word “because” makes people more likely to do something. It softens the blow and provides context. Just don’t let it become a back-and-forth as they try to convince or invalidate your why. You’ll get to know the situations where a simple “NO” is best.
For today I need you to write out your own templates and save them as email signatures.
You can base them upon real requests you've received or just a general theme of things you usually get asked to do that you simply don't want (or need) to do. For example:
"Thank you for your inquiry. Unfortunately, I'm unable to accommodate but I appreciate you thinking of me for the request. Wishing you all the best of luck with your project. Have a great day!"
--can be one of your 'NO' signatures that don't give a specific reason. It simply says no, politely and gracefully and wishes them well. I use this one a lot, and I've never once had someone come back with a note that they were offended, or asking me to reconsider.
Pro Tip: I actually use the Keyboard Shortcuts function on apple to make this action faster. ie:
Open System Preferences > Keyboard > and click “Text Replacement”, which will use a small combo of letters to expand into an entire sentence or paragraph.
Add the shortcut word you want to use into the “Replace” column. Perhaps it’s “Unf” which will expand the text into whatever you enter into the “With” column.
eg. “Replace” unf with “Thank you for your inquiry. Unfortunately, I'm unable to accommodate but I appreciate you thinking of me for the request. Wishing you all the best of luck with your project. Have a great day!”
We'll touch on saying 'yes' to things that you 'have' to do for work, family or friends, and colleagues in the coming days.
Again, telling your boss NO is quite simple, but not easy.
Enduring your peer pressure is quite simple, but not easy.
Protecting your irreplaceable time is quite simple, but not easy.
Staying on your course when everyone tells you to change it is simple, but not easy.
Baby steps. NO takes practice. Start small, and work your way up.
Tomorrow, we’re going to delve into why you have a compulsion to apologize after saying No, and why it isn’t helping anyone. (Sorry not Sorry.)
–Oliver Burkeman, Four Thousand Weeks
–Greg McKeown, Essentialism
–David Allen, Getting Things Done
–James Clear, The Ivy Lee Method
–Nir Eyal, Indistractible
–Marie Forleo, Ultimate Guide to Saying No