SecondIron's Blog

Sharpening Iron to Live Second

No holds all the power

I say no, No holds all the power

One of the most powerful sentences is ‘No’

Many of us are weak when it comes to saying ‘no’ to someone else’s request.

We are afraid that it might:

  • Hurt their feelings
  • Embarrass them
  • Offend them
  • Upset them
  • Disappoint them
  • Anger them

Noticing a trend there?  It seems that the lack of use is all about ‘them.’  Where do we draw the line and accept the fact that we are no longer going to be someone else’s doormat?  How many times have you bought something you really didn’t want just to make the other person happy, or at least quit selling?  Anyone that owns a timeshare, unnecessary appliance or kitchen ware bought at a trade show, or owns something that you never used and regret buying; raise your hand.  Feel silly raising your hand by yourself as you read this don’t you? The answer is ‘no’ even though you just said ‘yes’ to yourself.

We are told ‘no’ all of our lives, well most of us without the exceptionally blessed that well, probably are not reading this anyway.  Whether you try to get a loan, job, ask someone out, had an idea, were ever a kid you have become accustomed to hearing ‘no’ just not saying ‘no.’

Instead, we would rather suffer in silence than ruffle the feathers of someone else’s world.  We bend over backwards to make others happy without realizing it, much less the right intention.  The path of least resistance seems to be the easier to take.  It is easier to over commit and have sleepless nights than to tell someone ‘no.’

Personally, I used to be one of the weak ones that could never say ‘no’.  After many years of being abused financially, emotionally and spiritually I quit. That’s right I gave up giving someone else the power over me.  No longer can I be manipulated by someone else’s need or greed.  I have grown a spine and the short word of ‘no’ flows freely at my own choosing.

How was I able to make this drastic change from being a yes man to one that can tell my own mother or wife ‘no’? Well it was not easy, but it was necessary for my own sanity.  I grew tired, plain and simple and to the point.  I was tired of all the footprints across my back.  I was tired of doing things I really had no interest in doing.  My closets and garage are still full or things I never needed and was not up to the challenge of saying ‘no’.  Being tired made me make a choice, recondition my thinking and in turn reach the power of the word ‘no’

With great power comes even greater responsibility.

When using the new-found power of ‘no’ we must be cognizant of its strength and use it wisely.  Just because we feel comfortable saying it, that does not give us the right to egregious in its disposal.  If we are hurtful rather than respectful it loses its flare and you are just being a jerk.

“Sanctify them in the truth, your word is the truth.” John 17:17

As long as we speak in truth and are honest in our saying ‘no’ rather than being hurtful or doing so in spite we will be loved for our truth.  We gain respect by being honest and saying what we mean and meaning what we say.  Being a person of courage will long outlast the person that bows to everyone else’s beckon.

So the next time you are asked to do something you truly in your heart have no desire to do, treat them with respect and politely say ‘no’.

“No one ever went broke by saying no too often.”-  Harvey MacKay

You will find yourself with a greater sense of peace and satisfaction by being upfront than living in regret of giving in.  Some people will try to convince you through guilt and persuasion to get you to change your mind.  Once you take the stand of ‘no’; in order for it to carry its weight you must be steadfast in your decision.

You will find that more people will come to you for advice and guidance once they realize that you are comfortable with telling them the honest truth.  Use the power of ‘no’ to benefit the good of others and they will return the same respect to you in kind.

As Jon Acuff recently said “The word yes is very expensive. You only have a few opportunities to spend it every day. Don’t waste it on situations that deserve to hear the word no.”

Question:  What are your thoughts on the power of the word ‘No’?

About Charles Johnston

Charles is a Christian, husband and father of fur-kids who shares his walk with others in hopes to help other's along the way.

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