Imagine your boss has just asked you to work over the weekend, or an acquaintance has just invited you out for drinks.

And you don’t want to work the weekend, or go out for drinks. But you’re wavering because you don’t have anything else planned. Before you know it, you’ve blurted “Yes!” but you actually meant “No!”

Whenever you get asked to do things you’re not sure about, it’s a really useful exercise to have this simple phrase at the ready: “Give me a minute or two. I just need to think about it.”

During that time another useful phrase to ask yourself is: “Does it suit me to work over the weekend?” or “Do I want to go out for drinks with a group of people I hardly know?”

This is called giving yourself breathing space; just allowing yourself to pause for a moment so you can really decide whether it does suit your plans or not. What do you really want to do? You may decide that your boss is taking advantage of you, and then you can tell him or her that this weekend doesn’t suit. Or, you may decide that you quite like this acquaintance and you’d like to get to know her and her friends better, so it does suit to go out for a drink.

Just giving yourself some breathing space can be a game-changer. Now you have the time to start doing what you really want to do in an authentic and honest way. And you can happily say: “It doesn’t suit…..” for the things you don’t want to do.

Photo by Sarah Cervantes on Unsplash