The ability to say “no” is an important component of a healthy relationship in business and personal communication.

Jim Kemp in the book “Say No First” recommends refusing if the interlocutor is pressuring you and you are afraid of losing him. According to the author, the word “no” allows you to reject erroneous assumptions and avoid unnecessary compromises. Here are the top 10 tips to teach you how to refuse:

1. Practice
Add this word to your vocabulary. And the next time you are asked to do what you do not want to do, make every effort to refuse. For training, make it a rule to refuse someone at least three times a day. Believe me, there are plenty of reasons.

2. Repeat “no” if the opponent tries to persuade
Be prepared that you will have to defend your decision. Especially if the person has never heard from you before. In this case, gently repeat your “no” many times, no matter how hard your opponent tries to put pressure on you.

3. Build boundaries
You need to know in advance what you can agree to and what you can’t. For example, you refuse to work on weekends because it harms your vacation and loved ones. Or you will not borrow money from a friend, because tomorrow you are going to buy a valuable thing or invest in something, or maybe you have a principle – do not lend to friends.

4. Do not rush to answer
Pause before answering. You can tell the interlocutor that you need time to “think”. In a situation where this is not possible, ask to repeat the request. It takes time to compare requests with your priorities. In addition, you give yourself the opportunity to change your mind in time and not say out of habit.

5. Paraphrase the word “no”
If you are uncomfortable or think that you can offend a person with a sharp refusal, you can paraphrase him. For example, say, “I prefer not to do this,” “not now,” or “it’s not for me.”

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