How much thought have you given the word, NO?
I would venture to guess that very few of us have given this two letter word a significant amount of thought. Yet, when we hear the word, NO, it typically has a significant impact on our psyche and emotions.
What is it about this word, NO, that gives it so much power?
…and it does have power!
The word NO is so powerful, that we often anticipate the probability we may hear someone enunciate this one syllable word, that we proactively change our plans.
There are questions that we will not ask…
Things that we will not do…
Barriers that we will not cross…
Simply to avoid hearing the word, NO.
Why do we FEAR this small two letter word?
In 2008, the American Psychological Association published a study on a baby’s top ten first words. Babies, at an average age of eleven and a half months, from the United States, Hong Kong and Beijing were studied. Guess which word showed up in the top ten first words for babies from the United States and Hong Kong?
That’s right, the word NO.
After barely a year on earth, most babies from the United States and Hong Kong, already know how to say, NO.
As toddlers most of us learned the word NO, from our parents.
We’ve all heard our parents or a parent say, “NO means NO!”
Did our parents mess us up?
Does NO, always mean NO?
…or is it a word we use to protect ourselves?
After all, our parents used it to protect us, right?
They would shout out things like, “NO! Don’t touch that! It will burn you!” or “NO! Stay away from the street!”
So, as children the word NO was significant. It was used to identify possible danger and set boundaries. At a very young age, NO had a distinct identity on which we placed an emotion.
This week I’m asking us all to reflect on our relationship with the word, NO.
Some of us can’t say, NO.
Some of us can’t hear, NO.
Saying NO makes some of us feel powerful.
Hearing NO makes some of us feel powerless.
How else does the word NO impact you?
This week, I want you to notice when you use the word. I want you to notice when you choose not to use the word.
Why did you say, NO?
Did you really mean NO?
Did you use NO as an attempt to maintain control?
How significant is the word NO on your potential decision-making and actual decision-making?
Do you anticipate hearing NO, then change your strategy or decision?
As a leader and life coach, I hear people say NO quite often. Funny thing, most of the time they don’t really mean it.
Who really wants to say NO to their dreams?
Who really wants to say NO to more money?
Who really wants to say NO to a better life?
In a lot of cases what NO really means is:
I need more clarity.
I want more time.
Who are you?
What do you REALLY want?
…and the list goes on…
In the future, begin to ask yourself, what the people in your life are REALLY saying NO to. Don’t assume its just a black and white NO. Typically, there’s always something beneath the surface.
After all, isn’t that true for you, when you say NO.
Going forward, be careful of how significant you’re making the word NO, in your life.
Let’s start changing how we experience NO!
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About the Author:
Global Entrepreneur – Certified Life Coach – Media Personality – Speaker
Linal Harris is a global entrepreneur, certified life coach, author, and media personality. As the founder of Inspirational Perspective® Publishing, LLC and Insights 4 Life™ Coaching, LLC, Harris challenges his global audience and coaching clients to Murder Mediocrity® and live their best life possible. Harris concentrates his work as an ontological coach with clients on what he calls the 4 pillars of life; the relationship we have to ourselves, the relationships we have with others, our relationship to work and money, and the connection we have to our spirit and life’s purpose. Harris coaches CEO’s, executives, entrepreneurs, athletes and celebrities. Harris is the author of “Slay Your Goals”, where he provides his readers with scientific and research backed tips for achieving their goals. Harris is an expert goal-setter and has been called upon by Fortune 500 companies to assist with setting their strategic priorities, facilitate goal-setting sessions and provide inspirational talks.
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