Monday, March 28, 2005


saying no

one of the ideas that i've recently been trying to promote far and wide is about saying no. i think that often when we think about success we think of all the things we need to do to get there. following our dreams seems to become about one long and neverending to-do list. but what about the things we need to not do. saying no is a powerful way to get closer to our dreams.

recently, i decided to take the big leap and quit my full-time job so that i could put more time and energy into building my project - dream big. i knew that i'd have to take a part-time job to make the financial transition doable, so i started thinking about what i wanted that part-time job to be.

as it turned out saying no was invaluable in getting a job that would allow me the space to do things i really want to do. i didn't really have specifics for my ideal part-time job, but i knew what i didn't want. i decided to say no to a commute and to working more than 20 hours a week. i used these two criteria to help me find a great job. it's 3 miles from my house at 18 hours a week which will not only allow me the time to focus on building my'll allow me to bike to work to boot! this is just one example, but it's been a powerful one in my life.

perhaps what you need to say no to is taking on that extra project at work, or hanging out with that friend who can never say a single positive thing, or watching another hour of tv. cheryl richardson, in her book take time for your life asserts that we should say no unless it's an absolute yes. what if you were to stop doing things out of obligation, routine or in order to please someone else.

try it out, think about your life, your dreams, your goals...what will you have to say no to in order to get the things you really want? i encourage you to make a list. list the things you really want, i.e. the things you want to say yes to. and then think about the corresponding things you will have to say no to get there. the best part - saying no is actually quite exhilarating!

dream big,

Wow. I have a really hard time saying no, but looking at it that way, it should be easier to do now.
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