Although the art of saying no is difficult to master, the art of accepting no is even harder for people.
Rachel Hollis is a new and trendy sensation with her motivational book, Girl Wash Your Face. Although her book aims to keep an overall positive tone, I can’t help but feel unsettled when I read parts of her book. Her book is self-focused; it reminds me of a book full of Pinterest quotes littered with sandy beaches, dream catchers, and mason jars. Follow your dreams and let nothing or nobody get in your way. Of course her book is gaining popularity. We live in a self-focused world where anyone and everyone want to be uplifted and empowered in everything they do.
Multi-level marketing companies are running with these words of wisdom, especially the powerful words Hollis writes about not taking no for an answer. “I am successful because I refused to take no for an answer. When it comes to your dreams, no is not an answer. No is not a reason to stop. Instead, think of it as a detour or a yield sign. No means merge with caution.”
Actually, no it doesn’t. No means no.
No means no with physical touches and with sex.
No means no when we teach our kids safety and boundaries.
No means no when with speed limits, traffic cones, and red lights.
I am not writing solely to slam Hollis’ book. I’ve seen this line of thinking everywhere. In entertainment, in any kind of sales, in the classroom, on the news, and even in the way I teach my own children how to behave. Roadblocks, stop signs, and instincts exist for a reason. They protect us from harm in so many ways.
No does not mean “Find a way to convince me.” It literally means no. You can stop here. To say otherwise is a slippery slope for many reasons.
Whether you’re a car salesman, teacher, designer, model, door-to-door book salesman, direct-sales consultant, doctor, pediatrician, stay-at-home mom, writer, painter, body builder, influencer, blogger, photographer, or coach, please respect a solid NO. If you encounter a NO, it doesn’t mean to yield and do it anyway; it means it’s time for some self-reflection. Do I belong here? Is this where my talents truly lie? Is my approach off-putting or unwelcome? Am I making someone else uncomfortable? Could/should I go a different way?