Magic Productivity Secret: Say "No" more

No is one of the most under rated words in the English language.  No is a recognition that we have finite time to get things done and clearly identifies the things we choose to not do.  No is seen by most as a negative, but when used as an affirmation of the things you choose to say yes to, it’s actually a positive.  The most important decision we make every moment is what we say yes and no to.  What we decide to pay attention to and what we decide to ignore.  What we decide to add to our stack and what we decide to let slide off.  What we decide to not decide about at all and let a decision happen by default.
As I have focused on becoming more mindful / present moment aware, I have become more aware of how easy it is to say yes (mentally or out loud) / how hard it is to say no and how easy it is to underestimate how much work something will be /overestimate the time I will have to complete a project with a quality outcome.  As a result I do find myself saying no much more often.  Rather than getting less done, however, my productivity has actually increased.  I am able to bring more energy, focus and depth to the few things I decide to say yes to.  As an added bonus I waste a lot less time switching from one project to another in a vane attempt to keep all the balls in the air.
I recognize this approach may not be for everyone.  The reason its hard to say no is the underlying fear that you may say no to the wrong project – the project that could make a real difference. It seems easier to say yes to everything and “keep your options open” rather than commit and complete something.  But its only in the completion, the getting done of things, that you get anything out of your projects anyway and so far saying no is the only path that I have found that lets me get there.






Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *