If you’re like most maxed-out entrepreneurs I know, your mental and emotional well-being is regularly challenged by a million to-do’s, have-to’s, and will-you-pleeeeease’s.
And with additional pressure from the holidays, you may be on a fast track to burn-out. That’s not a great way to begin the new year.
To keep the crazies to a minimum in my life and business, I’ve employed the use of a Magic Word.
This word changes everything.
Priorities come into focus. Difficult people fade into the background. I even find time for a midday goof-off game of Letterpress.
If you could use a little more mental and emotional peace and a little less chaos, today’s post is going to get you on the right track.
How I Was Forced into Using the Magic Word
Earlier this year I was mentioned in an ebook by Marie Forleo. She referenced a little secret I prefer to keep under wraps:
I don’t work very much. At least not compared to most entrepreneurs.
It’s true. I strive to maintain extra space in my life, though some days I certainly succeed at it better than others.
Once this book (and my secret) was out, I got a ton of emails from people asking things like:
“I just read about you in Marie’s book, and I’d love to know how you manage your schedule. Can we got on the phone so I can pick your brain for awhile?”
It was a strange and uncomfortable position to be in. I appreciated that these people wanted to hear about my experience (talk about flattering!), but did I really have time to hop on the phone with everyone who asked?
Enter the Magic Word
The answer (and the Magic Word), of course, was no. I love you, and I want to help you, but no.
Not that I didn’t want to help these people–I did. I love helping others create the business they want. It’s that I love my free time, my space, and my freedom even more.
And since having free time is extremely important to me, I have to set boundaries. While I truly love helping people, I can’t do it every single time someone asks.
Though sometimes hard to say, the Magic Word really does save the day.
Why I Use It
When I detect that push-pull feeling of wanting to help and simultaneously run like hell in the opposite direction, it’s my reminder to focus on what is most important to me.
In essence, the Magic Word brings me back to what I value.
When you’re clear on your desires and goals for your life and business, it’s easier to determine when you should say yes and when the answer should be no. Tweet that!
You are likely, as your business grows, going to get requests for interviews, articles, and free advice. One I get all the time is is, “Can we chat?”
At first, you might feel extremely uncomfortable saying no. But eventually, you will find a way of declining requests that’s in full alignment with what’s important to you (and doesn’t feel rude or cruel).
Yes, you really can say the Magic Word and not feel icky about it. Here’s what I do.
How I Learned to Give an Oh-So-Loving-No
When I was inundated with emails about my work schedule, I started to get upset and knew that I’d be not-as-nice-as-I-like-to-be in my replies. So I asked for help in drafting a respectful, polite, gently-worded email to use whenever someone asks for my time for free.
I was able to explain why I can’t fit it in my schedule, but if they want to work with me one-on-one, they’re welcome to check out my coaching packages. I also invited them to head over to my Facebook page to post their question.
You, too, are always welcome to ask questions on my Facebook page. I will do my best to answer them within a few days of your post.
Is it Time for You to Use the Magic Word?
Does the Magic Word sound like something you need to get put into action? Not sure where or how to begin?
Magic Word Application #1: Ask yourself, “What am I currently doing that I don’t want to do? How can I get out of it?”
Notice I didn’t say, “Can you get out of it?” I said, “How can you get out of it?”
Be clear that you must part ways with this soul-sucking activity. Find a way exit gracefully and with a full heart, so you feel good about taking care of yourself.
Magic Word Application #2: Ask yourself, “What do people request that I have a hard time saying no to, regardless of how annoyed I feel?”
What do you not enjoy but say yes to anyway? Pay attention to where you notice that push-pull feeling I mentioned earlier.
Consider what you can do to help yourself say “no” next time that request comes up. Is it a politely-worded email or something else? Put that in place so you can easily employ it when needed
Use the Magic Word Frequently
“No” is such a small word, but when you use it to stay in line with your values, it can work miracles for your time management and your mental and emotional well-being.
Now it’s your turn. Tell me…
Where do you need to say the Magic Word more in your life or business?
If you already use the Magic Word, where, when and how do you use it?
We can all learn from your experiences, so please post your thoughts in the comments below.