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Learning when to say no

October 15, 2014

Here’s a great idea…

In his book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Stephen Covey says, “You have to decide what your highest priorities are and have the courage…to say ‘no’ to other things. And the way you do that is by having a bigger ‘yes’ burning inside” (pp.156-157).

In other words…

If we find ourselves too busy to take time out for important priorities, like taking care of our health by exercising, it may be time to reassess our “yes.” We say “yes” or “no” many times a day. Sometimes, when we agree to other’s requests, we say “no” to ourselves and our important personal priorities suffer.

How this applies to you…

Sometimes it is the “no” that enables us to say “yes” to things that really matter. Before agreeing to take on new responsibilities, take time to think about whether you are agreeing to something important and worthwhile. If you are prone to an automatic “yes,” try answering requests with, “Let me get back to you on that.” For someone who insists on an immediate answer, then you can politely decline the request.

To find out more…

about ways to be more physically active, visit www.uaex.edu or contact your local county Extension agent. You may also enjoy reading The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey or The Power of a Positive No by William Ury.

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