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Are you overwhelmed by all the demands made on your time? If you are still in some form of Covid-19 lockdown you may conclude that it can’t be avoided. Yet while the pandemic has undoubtedly created additional strains and activities some of the overwhelm you are experiencing may be due to your habitual ways of thinking and behaving.

In our book Humble Crumbles: Savouring the crumbs of wisdom from the rise and fall of Humble Pie, Paul O’Donnell and I explore how his self-identity, beliefs and aspirations contributed to his successes and his failures. In particular, Paul had a reputation for being the “go-to guy” and the “problem solver”. As a result, he seldom said ‘no’ when asked to do something even though he was juggling a start-up alongside three other businesses.

There are various reasons that some of us don’t say ‘no’.

We may not want to offend others and actively try to avoid conflict. We may want to please others to be liked. Or if  we don’t trust others and don’t delegate we take on tasks or commitments rather than saying ‘no’. And as elder children some of us had to be responsible for younger siblings and might have developed a habit of being overly responsible and taking on additional tasks .

Over time our moods and emotions and the very way we hold our bodies have contributed to our reluctance or inability to set boundaries and say ‘no’.


Questions for reflection

What practices have you put in place to build your capacity to say ‘no’?

If you would like to learn how to set boundaries and to say ‘no’ when it is appropriate  let’s have a conversation. Call me on my mobile +44 (0) 7952 068133 or send a note to

Set boundaries to say 'no'

And if you are curious about our book you can see reviews and testimonials. It is available on Amazon worldwide.


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