WE live in an unprecedented time for sure, where people seem to be beyond stressed and easily offended. How often do you put unnecessary pressure on yourself by trying to do and say the right thing? Most likely this occurs daily. Fortunately, you can avoid this kind of stress.
Give yourself PERMISSION to plan what you’ll say when future stressful situations pop up. Here are four jewel statements I personally use that always work for me. I hope you will add them to your tool bag of coping strategies for dealing with the endlessly changing reality we live in. Try them, I promise they work!

Learn to Say These Four Phrases at the Appropriate Time to Help You Lighten Up and Stop Putting Pressure on Yourself.

1. I Don’t Know.

Many times, you won’t say, “I don’t know,” because you’re afraid others will think you’re incompetent. Hey, you’re just human and can’t possibly know everything – and that’s okay, no one does. And you can always say, “I can find out and let you know later.” Sometimes you can say, “I don’t know” when dealing with people who are highly combustible and just looking for trouble. In that kind of situation, being neutral prevents conflict that you cannot win anyway.

2. I need help.
Everyone needs help from time to time. Unfortunately, you’re going to burn out without a support system. Saying, “I need help” must be done at the appropriate time. Most of us really strong-minded folks often take too many responsibilities on and fear we will look weak if we ask for help. As a business owner, I have learned it’s important to ask for help, to keep myself from burning out.
There is one place I recommend that you rephrase “I need help” and that is at home. When you ask for help with the housework or yard work, you’re implying that it’s your entire job. Since we teach people how to treat us, be careful not to set yourself up for taking on more responsibility than necessary. Instead, try saying, “I need you to share responsibility for the housework or yard work.”
3. I Was Wrong.
When you’re wrong, admit it. If you don’t, someone else will be pointing their finger and saying it for you. I recommend that you only apologize once, then take your energy and go right into problem solving. Ask, “What can we do to fix this situation?”
4. Learn to Say “NO” at the appropriate time.
How many times have you overbooked yourself? Gotten involved with a project that you didn’t have time for and didn’t want to do in the first place? Here’s a time management tip: go through your calendar and write “BOOKED” on your weekends and free time. Now when people ask you to do things and you’re not sure if you really have time or want to get involved, you tell them, “I have to check my calendar, I might be booked, I’ll get back to you.” This strategy allows you to choose what activities you really want to become involved with instead of being a reactor and overbooking yourself.
It’s hard saying “NO” to people because you want them to like you. You end up giving too much of yourself because you don’t want to disappoint anyone. Better to suffer the sixty seconds it takes to decline with kindness such requests of your time than suffer way much longer doing things you don’t have time for.
So LIGHTEN up folks! Allow yourself to have more of a sense of Humor in life and give yourself a break. After all, you are HUMAN – a work in progress!!!
Lee Milteer
Performance and Productivity Coach
Millionaire Smarts Coach
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