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Throw One Back

When your mind is racing, it is often because you have caught too many little fish while you were casting for the big ones. It's up to you to know when to say "no" and throw the little ones back.

  • What's one "little fish" you recently picked up from a boss, subordinate, friend, or family member? Maybe you're already wishing you hadn't said, "yes." It might be going to take more time than you originally thought. The circumstances may have changed since you signed on.
  • Okay, here's where the rubber meets the road. Contact that person who lured you into a "little fish" commitment and give it back. Of course it's hard — none of us wants to risk disappointing someone — but bite the bullet. Pick up the phone or walk down the hall and tell the person that it is not possible for you to help out after all.
If you start to feel embarrassed, don't! You are righting a situation that was wrong in the first place. Okay, you made a mistake. Any discomfort you feel will be offset by the relief of clearing one thing off your plate. Next time you'll think before you get hooked. Maybe you'll even learn to say "no" more often or at least not volunteer when you have a full plate.
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A series of "quick-lifts" excerpted from Recharge in Minutes, ©2003, by Suzanne Zoglio, Ph.D.

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