Scraped thin, like too little butter over too much bread...
I had just related to a friend at a meeting that I felt like a horse that was stumbling in the harness. Faltering. Going down. "Like one of those pitiful nags in Black Beauty that pulled a cart until it collapsed in the harness, and then was cut loose and left to die in the nasty streets of London," I joked.
Not more than five minutes later, another friend approached me. "We have this job we really need you to do for us..."
"No, I can't," I replied.
"But we need you," she pressed.
"I'm sorry. I really can't take this on right now."
"But you have to," she insisted. "You don't have a choice!"
I'm not afraid to say No - it's something I've been working on for years. I'm much more proficient at saying No than I used to be.
Still, I don't quite know how to respond to people who won't take no for an answer, who insist that I must do what I have expressly stated that I am absolutely incapable of doing.
I've read tips for saying No effectively...
Use emphatic language: "It would be impossible for me to do that."
Use body language: Hold your hand in front of you in a "stop" gesture as you say No.
Use diversionary tactics: Say No and then immediately change the subject to something different.
But sometimes, even these strategies do not work. Then what?
Today, Readers, I'm asking for your input. Actually, I'm pleading. How do you say "No" effectively, without being rude? I could really use your input!
2 hours ago