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Six Ways To Get Over Naysayers Who Say “No” To Your Ideas

Six Ways To Get Over Naysayers Who Say “No” To Your Ideas

If you’re a business owner or creative type who is unafraid to express yourself in the public realm, you need to learn how to get over naysayers. No matter how amazing your ambitious vision is, there will always be people who say “no” to your ideas, so let’s chat about six ways to deal with naysayers.

1. The Relevance Test

Before you do anything else, ask yourself this question: if the naysayer you’re facing isn’t a business partner, loyal customer, dear reader, or family member, is there any reason to care about what they think? I used to obsess with every single criticism posted on my blogs and articles, but one day, I realized that said criticisms, without fail, came from people who were outside of my target audience. I write for an audience of women, the criticisms typically came from men, so why would I care what they thought? If it’s not relevant, it’s not worth getting upset about.

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2. Fuel for Success

The only way to achieve massive success is to take massive action. If you’re in the training-wheels state of your new business or writing your first book and struggling with naysayers, use their negative energy as fuel to make you hustle even harder to show them what’s up. They might tell you that you can’t succeed today, but make sure they have the pleasure of eating those words in the future when (not if) you achieve your goal.

3. Make It Better

If the naysayer is a trusted friend, networking contact, or business partner, you might want to hear them out. Please realize that some people don’t excel at positive communication, so it is possible they might not be trying to be negative intentionally. If a naysayer tells you that something cannot be done, quickly reply, “how can it be done?” If a naysayer tells you that your idea needs work, ask, “how can it be better?” Asking questions could turn a naysayer into a team-player who will make your idea even stronger (and if they have nothing of value to add, forget they ever said anything, because only a blood-sucking energy vampire would trash a person’s idea without offering any alternative solutions).

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4. Shrug It Off

Let’s say you’re pursuing self-employment and you have a friend who tells you that your dream will never become reality. Ask, “Why not?” If they have nothing of benefit to offer that will help you improve your idea, shrug it off and tell them, “If you’re not going to support me in this, can we just not talk about it?” Life is too short to spend it with toxic people who don’t support you, so if they continue to be a negative influence despite your wishes, this might mean it’s time to break up. Your success is your choice (not theirs!). 

5. Dealing with Family

If the naysayer is a family member, then you might not be able to cut ties or avoid contact with them, so it’s best to find positive outlets that will keep you encouraged and motivated despite their negativity. Network with like-minded people who are in your field. Follow the best and brightest people in your industry, make note of how they operate, and apply what you learn so that it will be relevant for you and your business. Understand that your family isn’t trying to hurt you. This isn’t an excuse for their behavior, but they do have your best interest at heart, and they’re just expressing their concern in a way that isn’t positive. Keep a track record of your successes and show them the positive results you’ve achieved to make them more comfortable with your endeavor. You can’t argue with success, so I have no doubt you will convince them to support you.

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6. Haters Gonna Hate (according to science)

A new study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology discovered that haters are indeed going to hateThe study found that people who hate things they already know about are more likely to hate things they haven’t heard of just yet. Psychologists asked study participants about their feelings on subjects like architecture, health care, crossword puzzles, taxidermy, and Japan. The people who liked more things at the onset on the study had positive reactions to new information while people who disliked more things had negative reactions to new information. Remember this the next time a person criticizes your idea or posted a nasty comment on your blog: haters gonna hate (and there’s little you can do about it). If you have a hater infestation in your life, you might want to check out 9 helpful tips to deal with negative people.

How do you turn naysayers into yaysayers?

I hope these six tips help you get over naysayers, but I’d love it if you helped me add to this list. We all confront people who say “no,” so your input would be valuable to all the people reading. Please leave a comment if you have a helpful tip that will help everybody stay positive!

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More by this author

Daniel Wallen

Daniel is a writer who focuses on blogging about happiness and motivation at Lifehack.

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Last Updated on May 21, 2019

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

For all our social media bravado, we live in a society where communication is seen less as an art, and more as a perfunctory exercise. We spend so much time with people, yet we struggle with how to meaningfully communicate.

If you believe you have mastered effective communication, scan the list below and see whether you can see yourself in any of the examples:

Example 1

You are uncomfortable with a person’s actions or comments, and rather than telling the individual immediately, you sidestep the issue and attempt to move on as though the offending behavior or comment never happened.

You move on with the relationship and develop a pattern of not addressing challenging situations. Before long, the person with whom you are in relationship will say or do something that pushes you over the top and predictably, you explode or withdraw completely from the relationship.

In this example, hard-to-speak truths become never- expressed truths that turn into resentment and anger.

Example 2

You communicate from the head and without emotion. While what you communicate makes perfect sense to you, it comes across as cold because it lacks emotion.

People do not understand what motivates you to say what you say, and without sharing your feelings and emotions, others experience you as rude, cold or aggressive.

You will know this is a problem if people shy away from you, ignore your contributions in meetings or tell you your words hurt. You can also know you struggle in this area if you find yourself constantly apologizing for things you have said.

Example 3

You have an issue with one person, but you communicate your problem to an entirely different person.

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The person in whom you confide lacks the authority to resolve the matter troubling you, and while you have vented and expressed frustration, the underlying challenge is unresolved.

Example 4

You grew up in a family with destructive communication habits and those habits play out in your current relationships.

Because you have never stopped to ask why you communicate the way you do and whether your communication style still works, you may lack understanding of how your words impact others and how to implement positive change.

If you find yourself in any of the situations described above, this article is for you.

Communication can build or decimate worlds and it is important we get it right. Regardless of your professional aspirations or personal goals, you can improve your communication skills if you:

  • Understand your own communication style
  • Tailor your style depending on the needs of the audience
  • Communicate with precision and care
  • Be mindful of your delivery, timing and messenger

1. Understand Your Communication Style

To communicate effectively, you must understand the communication legacy passed down from our parents, grandparents or caregivers. Each of us grew up with spoken and unspoken rules about communication.

In some families, direct communication is practiced and honored. In other families, family members are encouraged to shy away from difficult conversations. Some families appreciate open and frank dialogue and others do not. Other families practice silence about substantive matters, that is, they seldom or rarely broach difficult conversations at all.

Before you can appreciate the nuance required in communication, it helps to know the familial patterns you grew up with.

2. Learn Others Communication Styles

Communicating effectively requires you to take a step back, assess the intended recipient of your communication and think through how the individual prefers to be communicated with. Once you know this, you can tailor your message in a way that increases the likelihood of being heard. This also prevents you from assuming the way you communicate with one group is appropriate or right for all groups or people.

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If you are unsure how to determine the styles of the groups or persons with whom you are interacting, you can always ask them:

“How do you prefer to receive information?”

This approach requires listening, both to what the individuals say as well as what is unspoken. Virgin Group CEO Richard Branson noted that the best communicators are also great listeners.

To communicate effectively from relationship to relationship and situation to situation, you must understand the communication needs of others.

3. Exercise Precision and Care

A recent engagement underscored for me the importance of exercising care when communicating.

On a recent trip to Ohio, I decided to meet up with an old friend to go for a walk. As we strolled through the soccer park, my friend gently announced that he had something to talk about, he was upset with me. His introduction to the problem allowed me to mentally shift gears and prepare for the conversation.

Shortly after introducing the shift in conversation, my friend asked me why I didn’t invite him to the launch party for my business. He lives in Ohio and I live in the D.C. area.

I explained that the event snuck up on me, and I only started planning the invite list three weeks before the event. Due to the last-minute nature of the gathering, I opted to invite people in the DMV area versus my friends from outside the area – I didn’t want to be disrespectful by asking them to travel on such short notice.

I also noted that I didn’t want to be disappointed if he and others declined to come to the event. So I played it safe in terms of inviting people who were local.

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In the moment, I felt the conversation went very well. I also checked in with my friend a few days after our walk, affirmed my appreciation for his willingness to communicate his upset and our ability to work through it.

The way this conversation unfolded exemplified effective communication. My friend approached me with grace and vulnerability. He approached me with a level of curiosity that didn’t put me on my heels — I was able to really listen to what he was saying, apologize for how my decision impacted him and vow that going forward, I would always ask rather than making decisions for him and others.

Our relationship is intact, and I now have information that will help me become a better friend to him and others.

4. Be Mindful of Delivery, Timing and Messenger

Communicating effectively also requires thinking through the delivery of the message one intends to communicate as well as the appropriate time for the discussion.

In an Entrepreneur.com column, VIP Contributor Deep Patel, noted that persons interested in communicating well need to master the art of timing. Patel noted,[1]

“Great comedians, like all great communicators, are able to feel out their audience to determine when to move on to a new topic or when to reiterate an idea.”

Communicating effectively also requires thoughtfulness about the messenger. A person prone to dramatic, angry outbursts should never be called upon to deliver constructive feedback, especially to people whom they do not know. The immediate aftermath of a mass shooting is not the ideal time to talk about the importance of the Second Amendment rights.

Like everyone else, I must work to ensure my communication is layered with precision and care.

It requires precision because words must be carefully tailored to the person with whom you are speaking.

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It requires intentionality because before one communicates, one should think about the audience and what the audience needs in order to hear your message the way you intended it to be communicated.

It requires active listening which is about hearing verbal and nonverbal messages.

Even though we may be right in what we say, how we say it could derail the impact of the message and the other parties’ ability to hear the message.

Communicating with care is also about saying things that the people in our life need to hear and doing so with love.

The Bottom Line

When I left the meeting with my dear friend, I wondered if I was replicating or modeling this level of openness and transparency in the rest of my relationships.

I was intrigued and appreciative. He’d clearly thought about what he wanted to say to me, picked the appropriate time to share his feedback and then delivered it with care. He hit the ball out of the park and I’m hopeful we all do the same.

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Featured photo credit: Kenan Buhic via unsplash.com

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