Learn to Say No

Career and success driven people have the tendency to be trapped by their mental attidue of  “Never Say No”.

This is useful if you want to succeed in anything, for the world requires a lot of determination and outputs that to say no will hinder or delay you at some point.  However at times, we do it just to prove that we’re good enough not to back out, egoistic as human are. That will help you reach the fast track of what you want, but if done too much, it can eventually lead to learning to say no.

Work and responsibilities can make or break a person.

To clearly illustrate, look at below diagram:

(Taken from the Managing Self Program of Mr. Ping Sotto)

Motivation at work

Work can stretch and motivate a person to perform well up to a level above the normal capacity but beyond that can lead to exhaustion, fatigue and stress.  And ultimately, to achieve best performance is to be in between.

In any responsibility given, try your best to perform well and exceed expectations. Show dedication, discipline and hard-work because it will open an opportunity to stretch potential and expand learning.   But be out on the look, it may already have exceeded your capacity, such as time, relationship, health or other important things.

Do not let work and stress ruin important things in your life.  In anything, try to achieve balance, a mid-level that shows your best self.  And in cases it exceeds your capacity, learn how to say no.

Wisdom is the power to put our time and our knowledge to the proper use. – Thomas Watson


  1. Where do you get this from, “Most success-driven people have this as a motto, “Never say no”. ”

    I don’t think most success driven people do that at all. In fact, all success driven people I know have very specific standards they adhere to and use those standards in deciding to respond with yes or no as well. Perhaps the yes mentality is true when it comes to accomplishments, but no is critical to staying focused, which you’ve outlined and I certainly agree with.

  2. Hi Mike, thanks for clarifying. What I meant by “most success-driven people have this as motto, ‘never say no'” is to emphasize the yes mentality.
    When I say “yes”, not really on all things (including non-sense) but “yes” to more and more tasks or responsibilities that leads them to exhaustion.
    Accomplishments and staying focus are really necessary to success.. but be on the guard for it may be too much.. and that’s when you should learn to say no. 🙂

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