A lot many of us have this inability in us to deal with the word of negativity – NO.
We find it very difficult to SAY NO…and at least an equal number of us find it hard to take a NO!
There are even cases where when one says a No, it’s been ridiculed, understood otherwise or considered to be completely offensive.
From our younger days, it has been instilled in us that saying something in the negative is rude. And this has been passed on, generation after generation.
Instance1: Before Birth
You had no choice to choose your family. So no option to “Accept”/”Decline” your prospective family.
Instance2: After Birth
You hate curd rice , for the curd being bitter or just for the simple reason that you don’t like it. But no, your mom/grandma make sure that you are force fed. You yell NOooooo in your cries, but they don’t happen to understand your lingo! However, they tell you how nutritious & good it is for your day-2-day growth – as if or assuming you understand!
Instance3: You are now attending a Boys-Only School
It’s lunch time. Mom has packed one of your favorites – Cheesy Pasta. Your best friend – who by the way, has brought curd rice in his lunch box – asks you for his share as Pasta happens to be his favorite too.
You want to say No, yet you can’t say or rather you don’t know how to say No. He waits no longer, grabs your lunch box and grabs half the content. You are heartbroken.
He offers you half his curd rice. You either accept & eat it reluctantly because you are hungry or choose to stay hungry & throw it out later on your way back home – but you don’t say no (What if he says “You are no longer my best friend”?, What if he says “God/Mother promise, I will never talk to you or let you play with my cricket bat!”?, etc).
Instance4: You move into a Co-ed College
Except for your grandma, mom, aunts, sister & teachers in school, you have never spoken to the opposite gender in your life so far. And then your best friend dares you to go ask a girl, her name. You don’t decline as you have no choice but to go ahead with the dare, for otherwise you fear that you could get “branded”. What happens next, makes you hate the fairer sex, for being so insensitive/rude. You had after all just asked her name. Your pink left cheek, trends as it gets itself added to the eternal folklore of the college corridor gossips!
Instance5: You find yourself in an Engineering College
Medicine was your career choice, but grandma wanted an engineer in the family. “If you fall sick, I can suggest you the medication…but I cannot repair the radio!” was her way of convincing the generations that followed hers.
Because you cannot disappoint your grandma nor go against her wishes, you take admission into any college that has vacant seat in its last benches.
You flirt with all those gals that come your way during the four years, as you think you’d have grandma’s blessings for the same. You propose to a few, who say NO to you. But then since you do not believe in “Rejection”, you still end up going behind them expecting a positive nod from their end. You even seek blessings from your grandma, to go about your (unknowingly sinister) desire!
Instance6: And then you get into being a Professional
You get those meeting requests. How many of you think twice when you have to click on “Decline”? How many of you end up clicking on “Accept”? How many of you go 50-50, as you opt for “Tentative”? (In the initial days, I’ve myself been guilty of clicking “tentative” and not attending the meeting instead of plainly declining it in the first place! Over time, I’ve learnt that it’s not rude to click on “Decline”, for if it was then it wouldn’t have be one among the options! 😉 )
You get a mail from your supervisor, about having to attend a “mandatory” training on his/her behalf. You wonder who is it mandatory for? You wonder if there is a way to say NO!?
You get copied (Cc-ed) in a mail by your business-analyst informing all the executive-designates that you would be representing on his behalf in the client call! You are not even aware of who the customer is. You have not even been intimated. You start to perspire, for now you have to say NO (but don’t know how to either) which would go into the inboxes of a lot many senior individuals.
Instance7: You happily get married & dance at your wedding too.
Once the regular life starts, you wonder – why you commit a lot of mistakes, why you end up on the wrong feet, why you are always held responsible for something that goes wrong – till that very moment where you Stop Saying a NO!
Instance8: And when you get kids
You fear that a “No” from your end, could make your kid compare you with the parents of his/her friends. What if you are not On-par? What if you…
Teach your kids, to say “No” to something they do not believe in…
Teach your kids, to respect someone who says a “No” to them…
Teach your kids, that their life (and of others) will be much better if they KNOW the proper usage of NO!
Know the NO! 😀
Post dedicated to Jyoti Singh Pandey!