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The Art of Saying No

The Art of Saying No

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Published by Claire Hennessy
How, by saying No, I helped not only myself but my friend too.
How, by saying No, I helped not only myself but my friend too.

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Published by: Claire Hennessy on Jun 03, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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05/12/2014

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The Art of Saying No!
By Claire HennessyBeing a total people-pl
easer all my life, the word ‘No’
has hardly ever entered myvocabulary. I always thought it was better to say
Yes
to all the people in my
life. I hadn’t
understood until recently that I was actually being a bit of a martyr,rushing around doing what I thought were helpful tasks for other people and thenbeing rather re
sentful when the recipients didn’t always gush with
appreciation. Ihave come to realize I was actually being incredibly arrogant. Who was I to knowwhat they wanted in the first place?
 
I am now making a conscious effort to stop worrying so much about other peopleand what they think of me, but old habits die hard. I did have a massivebreakthrough the other day, however, when a friend from the UK came to stay.She was on a course in Los Angeles and said she would come and visit afterwards,although we had not arranged an exact day. I was on tenterhooks all week waitingfor her call, but it was not until Friday at 5pm that she rang saying she was at LAXairport and about to buy a ticket to San Francisco, arriving at 9pm, and could Icome and collect her please!
(Just so you don’t think she was very rude, she had tried to contact me
 
beforeFriday but had used the wrong area code and left copious messages on a complete
stranger’s voicemail!
 )
Omigod, I thought.
The house was in a complete mess, I hadn’t asked my
daughter yet if she minded giving up her bedroom and there was no food in thehouse. What should I do?
The ‘old’ Clair
e would have immediately agreed towhatever arrangements suited my friend, regardless of how they affected me.
The ‘new’ Claire took a deep breath
and said,
“Actually, no, sorry, but it’s reallynot convenient tonight.”
 In utter horror I clasped my hands over my mouth to stop myself saying anythingelse. After a pregnant pause, my slightly shocked sounding friend said she wouldlook into alternative arrangements and call me back. About half an hour later sherang to say that she had decided to take the night bus from LA to SF, which tookcare of where she was going to spend the night. We agreed that was an excellentidea and I told her that she should get off at the San Francisco Ferry Terminal.Extending my new-found courage, I suggested that she might enjoy taking theferry to Sausalito, where I could pick her up at 11am and would save me drivinginto the centre of San Francisco on a Saturday morning.Finishing the call with a big smile on my face and a huge feeling of relief, I realizedI now had the entire evening to clean the house, talk to my daughter, wash herbed linen and tidy her room. The next morning I also had time to buy some foodand prepare a lovely lunch before leisurely driving down to Sausalito.

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Ah, lessons learned. As for Scribd, their "the worlds digital library" says it all, doesn't it. Quiet, this is a library. No talking, this is a library. :-(
Claire Hennessy added this note
No, I hardly ever use Scribd. It changed too much and I don't find it works for me now. Such a shame as it was so amazing at the beginning. Still, I made a few friends and found a few authors so it was worth it. How about you?
Jane Gilgun added this note
Claire, are you still using scribd? Have you found that your experiences with it have changed? I'm wondering if you have much interaction with other scribd posters. I find it less social/interactive than it used to be.
1 thousand reads
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hemangjadhav added this note
Awesome, truly good content. Your site is in really amazing. I bookmarked this and will come back once once more.
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Helen Winslow Black added this note
In my experience learning to say no is something women come to in mid-life, imposed by necessity...wondering if this is different for the younger generation...must initiate study...!

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