055: Mastering the Art of Saying No as a Highly Sensitive Person

RTT and HSP Coach

In this final episode of season one of The Sensitive CEO Show, I delve into a topic that many sensitive CEOs, including myself, struggle with – setting boundaries and mastering the art of saying no in our own businesses.

As an HSP, running my business has been both a blessing and a challenge. I emphasise that boundaries are crucial for maintaining a healthy and successful business. Throughout the episode, I provide valuable tips on identifying my priorities, learning the power of saying no gracefully, and using “I” statements when declining opportunities. I share my personal journey of struggling to say no to collaborations that didn’t align with my values and how setting boundaries allowed me to prioritise my energy and invest it in meaningful projects. I encourage my listeners to view boundaries as a form of self-respect and remind them that it’s a continuous journey of self-awareness and growth.

💝 Key Takeaways

  • Boundaries are essential for protecting our energy and well-being as a sensitive CEO.
  • Identifying your core values and prioritising what aligns with your business vision keeps you true to yourself.
  • Practice saying “no” with grace and firmness, declining opportunities that don’t resonate.
  • Acknowledge your feelings and use “I” statements when declining offers.
  • Setting boundaries is a journey of self-awareness and growth.

Overall, this episode empowers sensitive CEOs like myself to embrace our sensitivity, confidently set boundaries, and say no when necessary for a thriving and fulfilling business and personal life.

🌹 Rose’s Resources

📖 (Imperfect) Transcript

Hey, it’s Rose and welcome to another episode on the Sensitive CEO Show. And in this last episode of the season, I am doing a solo episode, and I wanted to let you know that I’m taking a bit of a break from the podcast. I started this podcast over a year ago now, and this is episode 55. So, it feels like a really good pausing point for me.

And for this final episode of the season, I wanted to dive into a topic that many sensitive CEOs really struggle with, including myself, and that’s setting boundaries and mastering the art of saying no.

So as a highly sensitive person, running your own business can be both a blessing and a challenge. On one hand, you have the opportunity to create a business that aligns with your values and your passions.

And then on the other hand, the constant demands, the overwhelming responsibilities and the fear of disappointing others can feel really overwhelming. So let’s dive in.

So, boundaries are the cornerstone of a healthy and successful business, especially for us sensitive CEOs. We tend to feel deeply and we take on the emotions of those around us.

So by establishing clear boundaries, it’s really the essential part that’s gonna protect our energy and our wellbeing. And firstly, it’s about recognizing that setting boundaries is not selfish. It’s actually an act of self preservation. And remember, you can’t pour from an empty cup. So how can we set boundaries effectively?

First of all, I really encourage you to identify your priorities, so understand your core values and prioritize what matters most to you and your business. And this clarity is really gonna help you determine which opportunities align with your vision and which ones to politely decline. And you can practice saying no with grace and firmness.

And remember, you don’t have to say yes to every collaboration, project or client. You can politely decline those opportunities that just don’t resonate with your mission. And saying no can be quite daunting, especially for sensitive CEOs who fear rejection and fear disappointing others.

So here’s a little technique that will help you through it. It’s helped me on many occasions. So there’s three steps. The first step is to acknowledge and validate. So first of all, recognize that it’s okay to feel uncomfortable saying no. Also acknowledge that your wellbeing matters too, and validate your feelings.

The second step is to buy time, especially if you are caught off guard and you’re not sure how to respond. You can buy some time by saying something like, let me check my schedule and get back to you. And then the third step is to use I statements. So when declining an opportunity use I statements to express how you feel and the reasons behind your decision.

For example, you could say something like, I really appreciate the offer, but I need to focus on existing commitments to maintain my balance. And remember that saying no gracefully might take some practice, but it’s definitely a skill worth honing. Your boundaries are not walls. They’re a form of self-respect that others will come to appreciate.

I remember a time myself when I struggled to say no to a potential collaboration that really didn’t align with my values. It left me feeling drained and unfocused. But after learning to set boundaries, I now really prioritize my energy and I invest in projects that truly matter to me. Allowing not only my business to thrive, but giving me plenty of space for self-care, personal projects, and of course that special time with family and friends.

So as we wrap up this very short episode today, I want to emphasize that setting boundaries and saying no is a journey, not a destination. It’s a continuous process of self-awareness and growth. So be patient and be kind with yourself. And remember that you have the power to create a business that not only fulfills your dreams, but also nourishes your sensitive soul.

So thank you so much for tuning into the sensitive CEO show, and if you’ve been listening for a while, perhaps since the first episode in July, 2022, then please know that I really, truly appreciate your support and your listenership, and if you’re new. And, you haven’t listened before. If this is your first episode, I really hope that you found this episode empowering and valuable.

So until the next season, remember to embrace your sensitivity, set those boundaries, and say no with confidence. Stay sensitive and stay successful.

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