What to Say No to at Work?

This article will teach you what deserves saying a categorical “no” at work – this will save your nerves and help you to carry out your duties more efficiently.


The ability to say “no” is almost a talent that will keep you out of the heap of troubles. Today we’ll talk about whether it is difficult for you to say “no” while working. If you can do it, it will protect you from overloading, increase the self-esteem and teach how to interact with others.

“No” to complaints

Employee N has been praised, and you have not, although you have achieved similar results. Colleague X was promoted, and you were not, though, in your opinion, you have worked just as well. Employee L keeps leaving work two hours earlier and gets the same salary.

You should never pin claims and accusations at your colleagues and especially your superiors. First, remember that complaining is mostly the prerogative of weak people. And secondly, you never know for sure all the details of someone else’s life. Maybe, employee L has a sick child and colleague X was busy developing a challenging and important project, which he does not speak much about.

Instead of empty and useless complaints, it is better to send your anger in the right direction: try to perform your duties better and show that you do not just work well to get the salary and are genuinely interested in what you are doing. In this case, the reward is not long to wait.

“No” to colleagues who overload you with their duties

It does not mean that you should refuse to help colleagues. You must help those who really cannot cope with the task and not the impertinent fellows who burden you with their responsibilities; you should learn how to say a categorical “no.”

Saying ‘yes’ to others, make sure you not to say “no” to yourself

Do not allow anyone to use you, nothing good will come of it. And if you think that colleagues will treat you with respect and kindness because of that, you are wrong: most of these people just chuckle secretly.

Say “no” to the phrase “I’ll try”

“I’ll try,” “I hope I can handle” – of course, there are exceptional cases when these phrases are relevant, but very often they only emphasize your lack of confidence in your own abilities and capabilities.

If you do not believe in yourself, why should someone else believe in you?

‘No’ to the desire to use office equipment for personal purposes
Of course, there is the temptation to use the office printer for personal use, but do not forget that this may lead to reprimand and, in extreme cases, to the dismissal. After all, you do not really want to be excluded from the dream company because of such trifles, right?

“No” to lies

Have you promised to be at work half an hour earlier? Be at work half an hour earlier. Have you promised to back a colleague who is in hospital? Do it. Have you promised to cope with this problem until five in the evening? Get familiar with it by this time.

Everyone lies. Someone lies less, someone lies more. It is impossible to get rid of this –it is a constant thing in the world we live in. But do not forget that you are responsible not only for yourself at work. lf you lie, you can let your colleagues down, even if you are in the same boat with them. Try to be sincere, and if you cannot or do not have time to do something, it is better to say this explicitly.

“No” to working late hours

Of course, there are cases when you do not have time to complete an important task, and you should do it after the work day is over. But if this happens all the time, this is the first signal that you should change something.

If you really feel that the workload is too high for you, you should talk to your boss. Most likely, he/she will try to understand your position. Otherwise, if you want to keep your mental and physical health, you should find another job that you will find comfortable.

“No” to shyness

Do not be afraid to openly express your views and participate in the discussions, even if you only have got a job. A person, who has an opinion, deserves respect, and if this man is not afraid to express his opinion, he deserves it twice as much.

“No” to the desire to burn bridges

Let’s imagine: you quit a job that you are already fed up with after a few years. Of course, while you work the remaining time, you already feel a free bird and can start to be rude to colleagues, to spoil the relations with others.

Remember that the earth is round and you should never burn bridges. Any relationship is important to you; you can someday meet anyone from your past on your way. Especially if you live in a small town.

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