Do you say Yes too much or too little? Getting the balance right is key to your career success.
Perhaps you say Yes to everything that people ask you out of habit, because you’re a ‘giver’ and because you feel uncomfortable saying No. And you end up permanently exhausted meeting everyone else’s needs.
Or perhaps you could be just that little bit braver and say Yes to the project that scares you – the one that will get you just that bit closer to where you want to be. The project that will make a difference to your career path. The project that will make you more visible.
Is there a pattern to when you say Yes or No?
Perhaps you find yourself always busy which means you don’t have time to do what really matters, what will get you nearer to your dream. In which case I invite you to ask yourself what your motivation is behind that ‘busy-ness’.
Perhaps you hear ‘should’, ‘need’ or ‘must’ in your self-talk and then hear yourself giving the opposite response to what you really want to say. I invite you to ask yourself who thinks you should or must and identify where that belief comes from.
Do you need to be more considered with your time?
Schools rely on goodwill. Your time is valuable and deserves consideration on how it is spent as you can’t get it back. Consider how much time you spend doing your job that you love well (not to perfection!), connecting with supportive and loving people, taking part in activities that feed your soul, and building a future you desire. And ask yourself if you’ve got the balance right for you.
Every Yes you give should have a purpose.
Perhaps you have a belief that it is selfish to put yourself first and I would invite you to challenge that belief. When did you learn it? Is it helpful to you to hold that belief? Is there evidence that disproves that belief that you’ve been ignoring up to now?
Or perhaps you’ve become so desperate to get that promotion you’ve taken a ‘spray and pray’ approach to widening your experience, volunteering for anything and everything with no real plan on where you want to go and how you can get there.
Are you even over-giving?
When we over-give we do not allow those around us to be independent and fly in their own right. We can become co-dependent or perhaps we start micro-managing which means we are ignoring our own career.
What would happen if you said No?
If the request is not going to get you the experience that you need, it is not rude to say No.
Pause to respond and always be positive and don’t apologise. Frame your response focussing on them and let go of the guilt.
For example, “Thank you for asking me. I will consider your proposal tonight and give you a response in the morning.” Which you could then follow up with, “I really appreciate you thinking of me. My schedule is full right now so I wouldn’t be able to give your project the attention it deserves. Please ask me next time,” or you can finish with “Can I recommend you ask X person as they are looking for experience in that area,” thus providing a genuine opportunity for someone else.
Three tips to avoid the ‘Yes’ trap
- Create a career plan and identify the experiences you need and the actions you will take to get that experience. You can then be proactive and seek out an opportunity or when you are asked to coordinate a project or initiative you have criteria you can return to in order to decide your response.
- Become aware of your own thinking and belief bias when you’re asked to do something. This will support you to challenge those auto responses that are not helpful to you and create more empowering responses that give you outcomes you want.
- Take 20 seconds of courage to give the response you are uncomfortable with – to say Yes to that opportunity that makes you feel queasy thinking about it right now and deal with that after, or to say No when you are only saying yes out of guilt.
If you would like support to do that deep work of challenging the thinking and beliefs that are holding you back, why not message me and we can arrange a time to explore how I can help you create more empowering beliefs and carve out your perfect career path.