When “Yes” means “No”

If you want to be more productive then you need to have “no” as your default answer. And that’s pretty hard for many lawyers.

After all, you want to help people. You want people to like and appreciate you.

You want to build your network, and you don’t want to miss out.

The problem is that when you say “yes” to too many things you wind up having to say “no” to the things that really matter to you.

If you feel like this might be your situation then you can start fixing the problem by doing what I call a Commitment Inventory.

Start with your top 10 commitments. In any order. And for each of them answer the following questions:

  • What is the commitment, specifically?
  • What needs does it meet for you (financial, emotional, physical, spiritual, or other)?
  • How much time does it require each month? Each week?
  • How well does it meet your needs, on a scale of 1 to 10?
  • How satisfied are you with this commitment? How would you change it if you could?

Now, put a plan in place to make the change to just one of those commitments. Work on one thing a week and you’ll see positive changes happening.

And the next time a new obligation or opportunity comes along don’t just jump to “yes”. Take some time to think about it before responding, and make sure it fits in with your updated Commitment Inventory.


P.S… If you’d like to get more tips on how to say “no” without being negative just click here and I’ll send you my handy guide.