What will you say no to? When you’re discerning vision, knowing what to say no to becomes just as important as knowing what to say yes to.

You only have a finite amount of time, energy, money and any other resources. So if you want to do a good job on the things you’ve said yes to, you need to know when to say no. If you’re in doubt, here’s a few questions that help me know when to say no.

  1. Does this contribute to my other goals, or does it distract from them? If it doesn’t contribute to any of your goals, then it’s usually a great reason to say no.
  2. Does this energise me, or tire me out? If it doesn’t contribute directly to your goals, but it is something that will bring you energy or relaxation, it can be worth considering.
  3. Am I doing this out of a sense of guilt, or a sense of excitement? If you’re doing it out of a fear of letting others down that motivation may only get you so far. It’s far better to do things out of a sense of desire rather than fear.
  4. What is the time commitment involved? This is possibly the most important one. All the above can be answered negatively but still signed up to, provided the time commitment is small. The bigger the time commitment, the more important that it fits with your goals, provides you with energy, and is done with excitement.

So what will you say no to? If you don’t get used to saying no to lots of opportunities, chances are you won’t be fully taking advantage of the ones you are saying yes to.

Mark Williamson works as a director of One Rock. He’s an experienced leadership trainer, author of biographies on John Wesley and William Wilberforce, and is also passionate about praying for London. He enjoys good films, good food, and going for long walks with his wife Joanna. You can follow him on Twitter @markonerock.

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