Andrea Novakowski's Coaching Tip of the Week
Andrea Novakowski's Coaching Tip of the Week )
  August 6, 2004 
Contents In This Issue
    The Top 10 Ways to Say No Without Feeling Guilty
    by Anisha Kaul

  • Brought to you by Andrea Novakowski, Master Certified Coach, Business and Personal Coaching for Corporations, Businesses and Individuals


    "Liberty is the possibility of doubting, the possibility of making a mistake, the possibility of searching and experimenting, the possibility of saying 'No' to any authority -- literary, artistic, philosophic, religious, social and even political."

    -- Ignazio Silone

    The Top 10 Ways to Say No Without Feeling Guilty
    by Anisha Kaul

    One of the shortest and simplest words in English causes even the most confident people stress. Most people shrink from saying no because they would rather sacrifice their time, energy and money than cause conflict or awkwardness, or experience feelings of guilt.

    Learning to say no takes practice and patience and a willingness to step out of your comfort zone.

    1. Develop a new respect for yourself.

    Revisit your personal boundaries and honor your commitments to yourself. Once you begin to respect yourself fully, others around you will find it easy to respect you.

    2. Get your priorities straight.

    What's most important to you? Write it down. Keep a copy with you at all times. Once you know what it is you want for yourself, it will be easier to stop agreeing to things that will get in the way.

    3. Take responsibility for yourself.

    When you realize that only you are responsible for yourself and for the tasks you take on, you'll get that saying yes to things you really want to say no to is just a way of deferring making your own decisions.

    4. Assert your right to ask for clarification or more information.

    This will buy you time and allow you to weigh your options and your priorities. It will also make it clear to the other person that you're not agreeing to their request straight away.

    5. Stop being invested in being nice.

    If you say yes so that you can be the "nice guy," then the chances are you'll follow through half-heartedly and this won't go down well with the person who asked you -- and you won't feel good about yourself either.

    6. Remember that you do not have to say yes.

    You have the right to say no without giving a reason for your answer.

    7. Sandwich your response.

    Start your answer by offering a positive comment to the person, followed by your decline, followed by a suggestion for an alternative. Example: Your boss asks you to take on an additional piece of work which you do not have time for: "That sounds like an interesting project, unfortunately at the moment the sales pitch is taking up all of my time. You know, Mary might appreciate the chance to lead the project."

    8. Get that saying no does not reject the person, it simply refuses the request.

    9. Be assertive.

    Don't give a long explanation and don't apologize for yourself, "I'm sorry, but . . . "

    10. Practice.

    Say no in the mirror, role play situations with your partner/friends/family and practice in real life, starting with smaller things and working your way up to saying no in more difficult situations.

    Anisha Kaul, Coach, can be visited on the web at

    Copyright 2000-2004 Coachville, Inc.


    NO, NO, NO, NO, NO!

    As Anisha points out, that isn't the only way to say no (even though it may feel like what you want to do some days).

    This article had me thinking of the flip side of the no equation that so many of my clients talk to me about -- asking for help. When you ask for help from a friend, family member or colleague, you don't know how they will respond. Many times we don't want to ask because they may say no and you know what that means. Right?

    Stop. What are they saying no to? Your request, not you -- see #8.

    This week practice saying no to those things that don't work for you or practice asking for help and see what shift in perspective you experience.


    August 12, 2004
    Pounce on a Project V

    Encore, encore! You asked for it, you've got it! Come to "Pounce on a Project V." Here's what participants are saying:

    "Pounce on a Project had me tackling my project head on. Completing it felt so good! Once I started, the angst disappeared."
    -- K.J.

    "I'm no longer putting off what I love to do!"
    -- Business Owner, TX

    "I had to get all of my marketing material organized and sent to my advisor. Where was I going to find the time? Pounce on a Project gave me 4 hours of uninterrupted time to easily complete my plan!"
    -- Business Owner, MA

    "Pounce on Project enabled me to fulfill a long time goal of mine, while energizing me to undertake other projects that I had been putting off."
    -- Lisa W.

    "The simple structure of commitment and accountability had me easily complete my project."
    - - Business owner, England

    "I learned I can use this time to accomplish many small projects I've been putting off. Hooray!"
    -- Freelance writer, Boston MA

    Did you know that incompletions and clutter can drain your energy? As we are half way through the summer season, are there projects or spaces you need to "clean up" to fully move into this next season? In preparation for our next get together, consider the following:

    ** What do I need to let go?
    ** How can I simplify?
    ** What needs to be done to get better organized?
    ** What needs to be stored for future use?

    Join Andrea on Thursday, August 12, from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Eastern. We will join as a group by phone and declare what you want to accomplish: organizing your office, simplifying your filing system, cleaning under your bed, finishing your website, planning your pricing strategy for your new products.

    During the morning, the group will gather by phone a few times to check progress and get any support needed to finish with a bang. At noon, the group will celebrate their accomplishments. Who says projects have to be boring and tedious? Bring your lightness and fun and join us for energization.

    To sign up or learn more, call or e-mail Andrea by noon on August 11, 2004. Space is limited. First come, first served. Feel free to share this with friends and coworkers. (Cost of the program is only the cost of long distance phone calls.)


    This Coaching Tip of the Week is brought to you by Andrea Novakowski, Master Certified Coach who provides Business and Personal Coaching to Corporations, Businesses, and Individuals. Andrea is a professional coach who partners with people to set goals and create momentum to produce effective results in their business and/or personal lives.

    Andrea is available for individual coaching. If you are serious about reaching your goals and living with greater fulfillment and satisfaction, consider using a coach. To schedule a COMPLIMENTARY initial consultation, send an e-mail to Andrea at


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