A Mastery in saying no

The vibe never lies.
Your soul shouldn’t be exchanged even in lieu of diamonds.

In the past two weeks, I said no to two writing gigs that could have made me six figures.

And since the money involved is too big, first response is to ignore everything and jump on it.

However, in both those cases, I realized I wouldn’t be happy or be myself – I would be just putting a price tag on my soul. And that is the last thing I signed up for.

Thus, I said no. Without surprise, felt light and easy beyond measure.

The best Content Writer is also a contented writer – who is feeling contented with every business relationship they have.

That doesn’t mean not having more gigs. However, that does mean feeling happy while doing the work – and trusting yourself, that when you say no when the vibe doesn’t match, much better ones with better vibes come to you.

Standing for yourself is priceless.

It didn’t work out

If it didn’t work out, something better is along the way.

If it did, you can create it even more epic.

Life isn’t about hits and misses. Life is about the hit you’ve made by being alive. You have a fiduciary responsibility to be the best of who you can be. If you don’t want to be in the life you don’t like, move. Stop wasting time on what didn’t work.

Does the culture of your company matter?

woman sharing her presentation with her colleagues

Today I saw a dance video of a friend of mine. She apparently was dancing with her college gang. Their energy, sync in moves, facial expressions and body language – revealed more than words ever could.

Here’s what my little knowledge of psychology tells me:

  • The people we surround ourselves with determine who we become.
  • Even they didn’t know that their friends play so important role in their happiness.
  • It is the best thing if we choose our people wisely, and if we don’t that’s a doom on us.

But why are we talking about this?

Because I was a star player in my first job because I was nurtured that way.

In my second job, things changed drastically because:

  • I asked a lot of questions, which made my manager believe I am getting too excited and I don’t know anything.
  • I was always happy and booming with joy, which was also perceived as a sign of dumbness.
  • Most importantly, there was once a trainer who was invited to our office. Those days my manager wasn’t talking to me (yes, that also happened!) because I had taken two days off owing to ill health. My work was in sync, so I attended the one-hour zumba session that the trainer conducted.

And damn, after that session it was a guilty feeling that encircled me. The feeling that I should have sat stuck at my desk because my boss would like it – I just didn’t want to be limited by that feeling so I attended the Zumba session. And more than anything else, it was organized by the HR of the company, and I, inter alia, received a formal email from her for attending the session.

This was just one instance, I could lay at least ten such instances that made me feel small in the organisation. Btw, instead of teaching me how to solve difficult problems, my manager used to ask me: “Will you be able to do it?” This wasn’t because I had proved my inability to him, it was because in our informal conversations he always highlighted how he felt men were more apt to doing this job.)

Was I wrong? Yes, in the desire of joining that organisation, I was wrong. Was I wrong in my stint at that workplace? Well, only if curiosity and cheerfulness are wrong.

In a fortunate tale of events, my leader did not like me and asked me to “look for further opportunities” because I didn’t fit the bill of fitting in.

I did get out of the organisation, and it was the best thing that happened to me.

Now, before we conclude, there were some good things in the organisation:

  • They did provide me bread and butter
  • The operations and sales team were driven to meet the customer needs, always
  • We had a break of one month after working for two months (good as well as not so good as all drive was lost).
  • My manager (yes the one who stopped talking to me) was cool and calm (sadly not driving me to performance.)
  • He said he felt bad about the leader asking me to leave, and it was all in good intent. He treated me like his daughter and perhaps because of which never bothered enough to make me bold enough to face the muddy waters of the job which is of the most importance to perform.

But this post isn’t necessarily about what was good in the organisation that I worked with, and what wasn’t. It was more about the culture. All organisations are the best – if they hire the right people

My friend was dancing along with her friends and they all enjoyed it. I danced with my colleagues and my non-communicative manager felt worse because of this. Of course that guilt slid into me. Of course that did affect me.

That is why it is important to review the company and the culture you are working with.

It is going to be hard, but so is it hard for the company to find the right fit for them. If they could do the emotional labour of being patient and going through the difficult stuff, so is it your responsibility to move the needle and go to the place you would be proud to say in your first page interview.

The equation with boss

Boss.

The moment one uses this word, it comes across as someone who is dominating, trying to pull you down, and thinks nothing in your interest, only in the interest of getting work done.

While I have worked with several bosses over the past years, I understand getting a good one is merely a chance of luck. Otherwise we are all doomed.

When you have a good one, there may be times when you may still want to change parts of their personality.

Of course, you may be considering job switch or client switch (because the client is also a boss) or making any other move, there is something you can always change, which is: becoming more elevated in your state of mind.

This may sound like the most obvious answer. 

Feeling bad and rejected because of boss? Make a more elevated state of mind.

Feeling resentful towards them? Create a more elevated state of mind.

Want to do gossip about them? Create a more elevated state of mind.

You may actually not want to do that in all these situations, and just go and deflate their car tyre as an easy option.

However, here’s the harsh reality friends: Unless you change your own attitude (no matter how good it is right now – remember, elevation 😇), you won’t have the power to change your attitude towards someone else.

By all means keep looking for a new job if this one doesn’t feel right for you. 

However, in the midst, in the process of finding out a new one, is it really worth your time to spend emotional and mental energy on someone who probably doesn’t care? Perhaps they are going through a bigger life problem that you aren’t aware – and their behavior is simply a reflection of that problem. Maybe their kid is not as bright as you and that’s why they want to pull you down.

Perhaps none of these reasons exist and still they aren’t humanly nice to you. Everyone is fighting a battle we don’t know – not even about our immediate family.

To make the change outside, starting within is perhaps the first step. And the last one. And all the steps in the middle. Everything else will be taken care of.

No, no one would change because of that. But you won’t be losing yourself in the process of coping up or finding a new boss. That’s when, you become your own boss.

Feeling worthy each day!

Warren Buffet says that he enjoys his work so much that he would tap dance to work, and paint on the ceiling of Sistine Chapel.

Life is supposed to be like this.

At a point of time in my life, my life didn’t look like this. I hated my days.

Yet I continued investing in my learning.

And what came out of it, is totally novel.

Life feels blissful. Even if I work more, it is the best version of my life so far. Still to get better each day.

The thing that saved me, that will probably save you as well, is: investing in my learning each day. No matter what.

Everything else is just a byproduct.

What’s your relationship status?

Any business relationship we enter into, we may either feel it’s great or we may feel something is not right at all.

On the surface everything may look cool, you won’t be able to point out what.

Yet you know in your heart that this business relationship is not going to work right.

Be a little right to yourself, and walk out from there. Only when you get away from wrong, will the right make space in your life.