The invisible workload is all the extra work that women put on their shoulders to make sure the household runs smoothly. This also includes “emotional” labor – managing the emotions of others – especially when you have to say “no,” refuse a request, or set/uphold a boundary.
This emotional labor leaks into other areas of your life, and before long, you’re coddling everyone – colleagues, clients, friends, neighbors, the list goes on.
On a recent episode of The Most podcast with my friends Rachel and Robert, we dug into this important topic as well as an interesting study about the importance of how you should say “no.”
The study found that when we use wishy-washy language around our goals, boundaries, and priorities, those things become negotiable.
For example, let’s say you have a goal to stop working weekends.
Then a client reaches out, asking if you can make an exception and book a session on a Saturday. Your response is: “I can’t work weekends.”
But using the word “can’t” opens up the floodgates. “I can’t” invites questioning. Suddenly, you’re over-explaining your policy, the other person is negotiating, and you end up feeling exhausted for defending your boundary or wind up breaking it altogether.
A simple solution?
Tell them, “you don’t.”
“I don’t work weekends.”
Notice that? There’s power in that statement. There’s a solid period at the end of that sentence.
“I don’t” is not a choice. It’s a clearly stated, firm boundary.
Think about your goals and boundaries. Then swap “I can’t” for “I don’t.”
“I can’t miss a workout,” say “I don’t miss a workout.”
“I can’t take your call after 3pm,” say “I don’t take calls after 3pm.”
“I can’t take on this project,” say “I don’t want to take on this project.”
Do you feel the POWER in these statements?
Using strong language will ensure people don’t stomp all over your boundaries. This gives you more time, more energy, and a greater capacity to focus on what YOU want—like growing your business, building more wealth, and making history.
And if you’re worried about how people will react when you start using this powerful language, please remember that you are not responsible for managing other people’s feelings.
It is not your job to sanitize your point of view or play Scrabble to make boundaries easier for other people to swallow. You don’t need to write sweeping paragraphs of excuses about your goals, wants, desires, policies, and boundaries.
When you change your tone and the energy behind your words and firmly state “I don’t”… you will gain more respect, more joy, and more ease.
Start using more powerful language and show people your priorities.
Boo-berry, to get a life that’s rich & delicious…
…just start saying: I DON’T.
p.s. Want more inspiration on shoring up your boundaries and achieving your goals? Come to THE MOST – a luxe, transformative, weekend mastermind experience for entrepreneurs, ambitious professionals, authors, and artists who are ready to electrify their lives, businesses, and relationships. Get your ticket before they sell out!