It's really simple if you think about it. You just have to say it.

People nowadays make a big deal out of small decisions like saying no to something.

If you have your priorities straight, it should not be difficult to say no to things that are not important.

The real question is: How do you get over your fear of saying no? Let me try to answer that question.

Have priorities

Most people don't. The majority does not have their life organized. Their goals are not clear, their day is not managed well. They just live life as it comes.

If you are this person, you should not say no to things. Because you literally have nothing else to do. Your time is worthless anyway.

But if you aspire to become someone who says no, you need to have a mission in life. Purposelessness is bad. And I see it rising every year in today's generation.

The solution to most of your problems is to "get a life". Which means, have priorities and things you wish to accomplish. Say no to anything that does not help nudge you in the direction of achieving these goals.

Be direct

Another reason why people don't say no is because they are afraid of being truthful and honest about how they feel.

This is yet another modern phenomenon. Ever observed how older people are usually more direct in what they want to say? It's mostly younger people who have this problem.

With all our phones and social media and modern technology making "communication" easier, we have forgotten how to communicate.

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez / Unsplash

For some reason, our generation believes in covert communication more than overt communication. It's stupid. So stop it.

Learn to speak clearly about what you can and cannot give people. No need to be conventionally polite about it. Doesn't help.

No "I will think about it", or "I will get back to you", or "maybe some time later". Just say no. Be direct. Saves time for both parties.

One of my recent chats.

Don't be afraid of coming off as arrogant

It doesn't matter what your loser friends think. First of all, you should not have people around you who would think you are "arrogant" or "egotistic" for saying no to things.

I have seen this behavior a lot in 20-somethings. They try to pull you down because they don't have the courage to rise up themselves.

It's on you to drop these friends. It's on you to not care what people would think. It's on you to care about yourself.

If you keep saying yes to every thing, people will come, rob you of your time and energy. In the end, there will be no "you" left.

Think about this deeply.

Your NOs make your YESs valuable

If everyone has a million dollars, no one has a million dollars.

People value what is scarce. If you give away your yes easily, your presence is not valued. Your yes is only valued when you say no to other unimportant things.

Think of it in terms of marriage. The bond of a relationship is only valueable because both people decided to say no to everyone else and say yes to just one person. That is why marriage is sacred, and casual sex is not. If you give it away to everyone, you're less valuable, and nobody of real worth would want you.

Thus, say yes selectively and learn to say no to other stupid things that you know won't help you in the short or the long term.

This doesn't mean you have to say no to things that are really important, or that you need to purposely say no as some sort of psychological manipulation tactic to make your "yes" more valuable- NO!
Use common sense and exercise your no when applicable.

Photo by S&B Vonlanthen / Unsplash

Focus on your happiness first

Most people tend to say yes to their "friends" and family because they don't want to disappoint them, or they don't want to hurt them.

But in the end, not saying things you want to say, not having proper boundaries is only going to hurt you- sooner or later.

First things first, you should not have "friends" who would want you to please them by saying things they want to hear. They're not your friends.

Focus on yourself. Do not self-sabotage for the temporary happiness of a temporary person. Discretion advised when it is family. But seriously, don't self-sabotage yourself for your "friends". Never works out for the better.

“When you say yes to others, make sure you are not saying no to yourself.” _Paulo Coelho

Learn to have boundaries. If you build a beautiful garden with no fence around it, eventually it will be destroyed.
Your life is a beautiful garden. Build a damn fence.

Be disciplined

What is discipline? It is the ability to say no to yourself.

No, don't eat that cake.
No, don't touch your phone.
No, don't lay in bed all day.

It's not just about saying no to others, it is also about saying no to yourself. Say no to yourself when you want to do things that you know are not good.

When you say no to yourself, it is much easier to say no to other people. Try it.


  1. Have priorities.
  2. Be direct.
  3. Don't give weight to other people's opinions.
  4. No's make Yes's valuable.
  5. Don't self-sabotage to please others.
  6. Say no to yourself.


Thanks for reading. Send this to someone who struggles to say no. Or keep it bookmarked and read it again when you have to say no. This post was a request by a young friend of mine.

This will solve a problem for a lot of young people today who are caught up in all these minute struggles and help them focus on the grand scheme of things that really matter.

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