Practice Saying No to Requests for Your Time

Time Management

Most people have far more work than they can possibly get to. That’s why it’s so important to say no to things that aren’t a great use of your time. But turning people down can be uncomfortable. To get better at it, practice saying no politely and gracefully.

  • If a colleague asks you to do something that isn’t your job, you might say: “That isn’t my area of expertise, but I’m happy to connect you with someone who could help.”
  • If you’re asked to attend a meeting or join a project that you don’t have time for, say: “Thanks so much, but I have to decline. My schedule is at capacity right now.”
  • If you’re asked to finish a task on a too-tight deadline, say: “I would love to help, but due to my other commitments, I won’t be able to finish by that deadline. Can I get it back to you by next week?”

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