Have you ever noticed how hard it is to say No to people?
Whether it’s someone coming to your door to sell something, ask for a favor or seeking a donation to their charity, people really struggle to Just Say No.
We make up all kinds of excuses that beg for more time, but never creates a decision – “I need to wait till my spouse is here”, “Let me check my schedule and I’ll get back to you”, “That’s such a great cause, I’ll let you know when I confirm how much I can give”.
One of the most powerful exercises I participated in was going to a shopping center and getting 3 strangers to say No to my proposal. It didn’t matter what my proposal was, my goal was to get them to say No.
I was amazed at how hard it was for strangers, who didn’t know me at all, to just say No to my invitation to attend a workshop. They made all kinds of excuses but found it so hard to just end with a No.
This has nothing to do with the Sales model of getting through Nos to get to a Yes. But if you reflect on the creative ways you avoid saying No, it will be an eye-opener!
Learning how to be gracious but firm when you aren’t interested in something is a great thing to practice! Saying “No, thank you” or “No, but thanks anyway” is a great way to be decisive but nice.
Public Speaking takes many forms. You don’t always have to be presenting to a large group, but often it is just being comfortable talking to one person and saying one word – No.