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How to communicate boundaries when there’s already a lot on your plate and someone asks you to take on more?

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NO BIIIIITTTCHHHHH

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“Appreciate you reaching out. I’m at capacity at the moment but once I have a bit of bandwidth, you’ll be the first to hear.” Or something like that…

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Learning how to say no is a very important yet underrated skill. Not easy to master. Practice it maybe with someone? Sometimes giving less fucks about your job helps a lot.

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Be honest, and say you don’t have any capacity to take on an additional ask/task/+1. I have always appreciated someone being honest with me/ and do this myself…. If the person asking has the ability to take something off your plate/re-prioritize then add something around the lines of “If I could hand xyz off to someone else”.

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100% need to push back. It’s ok to say no. As a leader, my job is to figure out how to make things work. If someone says to me they have to much on their plate I can either 1) help take something off OR 2) find an alternative option. This will not look bad on you, especially if your doing your job well. I can assume they probably came to you because of that.

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“I regret to inform you that I am not interested.“

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“I’m currently fully engaged on my client work as well as a few additional projects which I have made a commitment to support. I’d be keen to work with you in the future so I’d be grateful if we could stay in touch about future opportunities to work together.”

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Or when someone (managers, boss, etc) “presents you with an opportunity for lots of learning and growth that’s high visibility”

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Part of being a working professional is having difficult conversations and standing your ground. “I appreciate the opportunity, but I can’t take this on”

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Just say no, but explain the # of things you have on your plate, and “I would love to support you but I don’t want to take in more than I can deliver against well, and then fail you”

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What's the secret to your success?

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