How to say no

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by TeacherWhoRuns, Jul 26, 2018.

  1. TeacherWhoRuns

    TeacherWhoRuns Companion

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    Jul 26, 2018

    A colleague who has been a great help to me in the past has asked me to house/dog sit. I don't want to do it, and regardless of that the week she's asked for is a week that I'm not going to be available anyway. I don't want to get into the reason I won't be available due to privacy reasons, but I don't want to just say no without any type of explanation. What's the best way to handle this?
     
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  3. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Maven

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    Jul 26, 2018

    Just say no.

    You don’t owe anyone an explanation.
     
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  4. vickilyn

    vickilyn Magnifico

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    Jul 26, 2018

    My mom's favorite answer was "I would if I could, but I can't." if she truly regretted not being able to help, she would add "I'm so sorry." Those who knew her well knew which apology they received, but she was never hateful about it, so no one gave her a hard time. Not every rejection deserves a full disclosure, IMHO.
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2018
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  5. miss-m

    miss-m Devotee

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    Jul 26, 2018

    Seconding the other posts. "I'm sorry, I'm unavailable that week" is a perfectly acceptable answer. Heck, "Sorry, no," is an acceptable answer.
    You don't have to share more info than you want, and if she presses you (for whatever reason) just stick with "I'm unavailable."
     
  6. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    Jul 27, 2018

    Just make sure you are polite when you decline.
     
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2018
  7. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Maven

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    Jul 27, 2018

    https://lifehacker.com/5875337/how-to-say-no-without-being-an-asshole

    I really like the part about how offering explanations can actually make things worse.

    One of the best things I’ve learned how to do is decline things without feeling bad about it. I’m much happier, and nobody has been offended or stopped talking to me or stopped asking me to do things.
     
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  8. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    Jul 27, 2018

    Good point about not providing a detailed answer why he/she can’t. I like the answer above about saying “I can’t” or “I’m unavailable then, sorry.”
     
  9. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Aug 15, 2018

    Sincerely say, "Oh I can't that week."

    No need for apology or explanation like Ima Teacher said.
     
  10. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    As I've gotten older and less give-a-hoot-y, I've cut way back on how many words I use to decline or explain a thing. It really does make things easier when you stop beating around the proverbial bush and just get to the point.
     
  11. Aces

    Aces Habitué

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    Aug 15, 2018

    "Terribly sorry but I can't that week" should suffice. Short, sweet, and to the point is best.
     
  12. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    Aug 16, 2018

    The only thing about saying stuff like "I can't this that week" and such opens you up to "well, what about next week?" LOL Just say no.
     

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