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Life is complicated.  YOUR life is complicated—there is more than enough stress to fill your day.

Here are 5 ways to reduce your chaos (which actually comes down to five ways to say, ‘no’):

  1. Say “No” to more requests.
  2. Say “Yes” to fewer requests.
  3. Instead of giving an immediate answer when someone asks you to commit to something, say, “Let me think about this, and can I get back with you tomorrow?”
  4. If you accidentally say ‘yes’ (because you were surprised and it was awkward to say ‘no’)— call them back and create a “do-over.” Apologize for making a mistake in saying ‘yes’ when you really needed to say ‘no.’
  5. Utilize the perfect excuse of “I am so sorry, but I have other plans” – even if your plans are to not do whatever the other person is asking you to do.

The bottom line here is that we all get ourselves into trouble, creating stress and drama for ourselves by agreeing to things that we have no business agreeing to.  We do it for reasons of false guilt, non-existent willpower, trying to impress the wrong people for the wrong reasons. Often, it is because we are too insecure to set a boundary that helps preserve our well-being.

All forms of saying “no” require practice.  But if you do so with respect and confidence, you will see a decrease in your overall stress levels. You will actually be proud of yourself, once you get over the initial discomfort that comes with new boundary setting.

Try it.  Once you learn this, you will never look back.  I promise.