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This week, I had to say “no.”  

Oh, I wanted to do it. I was equipped to do it, and it was a beautiful ministry opportunity that would have made my heart sing.

So, it was a sad, reluctant, somewhat painful “no,” but here’s what I’ve learned… 

In the smorgasbord of life, my temptation is always to pile my plate HIGH. I begin with the meat and potatoes of family and friends, add in the nutrition of vocation and work, throw on some sides of volunteering, and then, I start piling on the dessert of saying yes to dozens of other things. 

With each new item offered, I add it to my plate without removing anything else. But before long, the inevitable occurs, and my plate of priorities crashes to the ground. 

The Struggle is Real

Most of us struggle with saying “no” at various point in our journey. But saying “yes” to God’s calling on our lives as Christ-centered entrepreneurs means we’ll have to learn how to do hard things, including knowing when (and how) to give a gracious, guilt-free “no.”

You, your skills, and your time will always be in high demand. So, as you wrestle through all the opportunities that will come your way today, here are some powerful truths to keep in mind…

  1. The need itself is not YOUR call. — Often, our well-intended jumping in too soon fills the space someone else was meant to fill. If it’s God’s will for you to stay where you are, then He has a perfect plan to fill that other person’s need in a different way.
  2. Owning a business is already serving others in meaningful ways. — Business isn’t something that occurs outside of the mission field; it IS a mission field. God will give you lots of opportunities to selflessly serve others while growing a strong business.
  3. Building and running a successful business takes T.I.M.E.  — The idea and energy to start your own business can come in an instant, but turning it into a thriving reality is the work of a lifetime. Accept and enjoy!
  4. Non-entrepreneurs won’t understand, and that’s okay. — Just as a single person may not understand the real work, time, and commitment marriage takes, so non-entrepreneurs may not comprehend the commitment your business requires. Stay the course anyway.
  5. Pleasing everyone else is not the goal. — This is hard for me, but it’s true. Following God’s will with a relentless focus is not the path to popularity, but it is eternally pleasing to Him.
  6. Your “no” opens the door for the right person to say “yes.” — By saying “no” we clear the way for someone else to trust God, step out in faith, and embrace their own courageous “yes.” What could be better than that?
  7. Saying “yes” to God’s best will always require saying “no” to the rest!

Embracing the truths above will require a lot of “no’s,” and that can be hard. The asker doesn’t understand. He pushes back. He argues, he persuades, and often he persists until your confident “no” turns into a reluctant, regrettable “yes.” 

Before you know it, your business building endeavor becomes a distant dream.

It can be different. You can build this business that God has entrusted to you, and you can learn to say “no” in a way that’s both gracious and guilt-free.

10 Ways to Say NO Firmly and Politely

To help you (and me!) with this important skill, I’ve created a simple, free download, “10 Ways to Say NO Firmly and Politely.” Just click the button below to get your free download.

 

God has a beautiful life and business planned for you, and it begins by exercising your ‘no’ muscle today. Good things will come of it.

NOTE: Back by popular demand, this August, I’m offering another practical, virtual, and free “Facebook for Business Bootcamp,” with all new material on “How to Make and Create Business Videos” thrown in.  Yay!

If you signed up for the PDF, I’ll send more details soon.

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