The Art of Saying NO! My 5 Tips for Saying “Nope” in Business + Life

You’re probably here as the result of a social media post that spilled the beans on a secret I’ve been hiding, and it looked a little something like this…(scroll past if you already read it, and read if you haven’t. It will explain why I am posting about business these days!)


I?ve been keeping a secret?and I think it?s time I share it with the world. 

You know by now that my passion runs DEEP for empowering others to live the happiest, most loving and fulfilled lives possible. I want the hopeless to find hope, and to let the “unwanted” or “unworthy” to know they are wanted AND worthy! This is my life, and I do this most often by sharing food, fitness, family, & tons of thoughts and feelings with the world. This you know about me?

But what you may NOT know is that I have a hidden passion that runs equally as deep as what I mentioned?and MUCH deeper than my passion for stepping in front of ANY camera. 

This hidden passion is BUSINESS.

I. Crave. It. I love it like a pianist loves his piano. It courses through my veins, it?s engrained in my DNA (thanks, Dad). While I don?t have a FRACTION of the talents Chris has, this is something I am actually good at, confident in, and feel proud of.

I have tried not to share this much because…tbh I care too much about what people think. I feared it might have people questioning my intentions (many connect ?business? with ?money + power?)?and intentions are EVERYTHING to me. The reality, however, is that my passion for business has nothing to do with material things and everything to do with feeling like I am actually a valuable part of this mission. Feeling like I was given a gift, and by exercising my business mind, I can better spread the messages that we know can bring  joy.

After Chris hacked my IG Stories and caught me in action a few weeks back, I was surprised by your reaction. 95% of you VOTED TO LEARN MORE!!! You asked for my biz tips, so I?m working hard to give them to ya!

First lesson?learning the value in saying the word ?NO!? And showing all you people pleasers how to do it!

Whether you?re on a transformation journey, working hard in your career, or attempting with all you?ve got to raise teenagers?the ability to tactfully say NO is a skill that you must develop to get you to your goal!

“Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip.” Winston Churchill, wiser words were never spoken!???


So…here we go, fam. Business post numero one is officially here! After you read, go comment below and tell me what other business advice (or life advice) you’d like me to share next time! Bur for now…let’s talk about the topic at hand.

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it a thousand more times?I am so lucky to LOVE what I do! Transformation and having the opportunity to completely change someone’s life for the better is something Chris and I are both incredibly passionate about. But admittedly, having a career you love so deeply is both a blessing and a curse.

Over the past few years, this past year in particular, I had to learn probably the most painful lesson in business… saying NO. When you truly believe in what you do and enjoy doing it, every opportunity seems like one you can’t pass up! But saying Yes to literally everything that comes my way has made the more important projects?the grander opportunities?seem like a burden instead of a blessing because I am just so dang overwhelmed. It’s this exact scenario that taught me the number one key to career success: Sometimes you have to say NO! 

Outfit Details: Sweater (last seen here, similar here (Bonus: on SALE) and here), notebook 

Some of my favorite NO inspired pieces that speak for themselves:

Earlier this year, I talked about saying NO to a lofty list of resolutions for 2018, but that doesn’t mean saying No to setting goals. In life, sometimes, less actually IS more. It means saying Yes to the most important things, and saying No to the things that don’t get you farther along, closer to your goals.  This has had a positive impact on my personal life, but it’s also one of my top business tips. 

In theory it sounds simple! The to-do list is already 20 items too long, the kids’ lists of extra curriculars are growing by the second, and you’re already stretched far too thin. So just say No! Seems so easy, right? Well, it’s not. In fact, it’s almost painfully hard! But learning to say No can and should be done. Here are my top 5 business pro-tips for mastering the art of saying NO:

Be clear about your goals.

When Chris and I talk about transformation, we always emphasize SMART goals. By this, we mean setting goals that are specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound. When we talk about setting goals in our personal life like “I want to lose weight,” in order to be successful, we need to start by asking ?how,? ?what,? and ?when.? ?How? will you lose weight? ?What? will you do to lose weight? ?When? will you do it? This is a specific goal that answers all of these questions: ?I will lose 6 pounds in 6 weeks. I will accomplish this by consuming 1500 calories per day and by exercising at least 5 minutes, 5 days a week.? Now that?s specific! (I can hear you asking, ?Heidi, only 5 minutes a day?? Yes. That?s the type of promise you make to yourself). It’s easy to set a similar goal in life: “I want my business to be successful,” but we need to make sure we are breaking it down into SMART goals. 

Keep an idea/dream journal.

Just because you don’t engage with the ideas right now doesn’t mean that they are bad or that you never will put them into action. Keeping an idea journal or writing in one for a couple of hours per week allows you to remember and reflect. It’s also a feel good trip down memory lane that is much needed from time to time. I actually love this NOPE notebook as a friendly and cute reminder of the power of NO! Bonus: It takes away that bummed out feeling you get sometimes from saying No. 

Find your tribe (and grow your business together).

For every “why” or dreamer person, there’s a “how” or doer person. It’s the yin-and-yang of business. Between Chris and me, he is the dreamer, and I am the doer (it’s the mom in me?we moms are doers! Am I right?). In order to find your tribe, you need to understand who you are and what your manifesto or ultimate dream goal looks like. You can’t do everything or be everything, so understanding your strengths and weaknesses will allow you to not only put together an amazing team, BUT it will help you say No more easily because you’re collectively working towards your goals by making necessary concessions. 

Find a go-to stress management tool or activity.

“Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip.” ~Winston Churchill

Just saying No seems easy, but the temptation to say Yes to all of the things that inspire you will be there more frequently than you even realize. The fear of missing out is real, but the pay off is more completed projects and time to refresh. For me, a massage is my go-to stress management tool! Every couple of months, I do a 90-minute massage with the sole purpose of 100% zone out, me time. In fact, I’m overdue for one. I don’t indulge a lot, but this is a must for keeping my sanity and reminding myself that just saying No also means saying Yes to self-care for myself, which promotes better business practices and clearer thinking. Bonus: If you can’t schedule a massage, having a lavender candle around and just taking some me time for a couple of minutes is also a great practice. 

Stop the comparisons.

Comparing yourself to others opens up the temptations of doing more, saying Yes, and forgetting what’s important. There is only ONE you, and your contributions to your goals (both in business and in life) are special and can only be accomplished by YOU. It’s easy to see other people in your position or in your industry absolutely killing it on Instagram, doing it all, and looking fabulous, but that’s just the highlight reel. Everyone struggles, and people who seem two steps ahead might actually be five steps behind, so stop the comparison and know that you are closer every day to reaching your goals. Just take it one step, one goal at a time.   

It’s easy to get spread too thin when you’re wrapped up in the many facets of business and life. Now, repeat after me: No. Nope. Nada. Zilch. Nein. You’ve got this! What are your favorite business tips and tools?



Related reading:

Stressed Out?
Aggression Therapy + Self Defense = MMA || My Newest Fitness Obsession
Tip of the Day: Write it Out!
Sharpen the Saw || Unplug and plug IN to LIFE!
Foam Rolling 101: The Basics + How to Choose a Foam Roller

56 Responses

  1. Love this! Thank you for validating our own right to say no! You inspire me daily in so many aspects of life! This is my favorite post to date.

  2. This is my favorite blog post! I have the HARDEST time saying no to people, whether it is in my personal life or business life. This has really helped me grow from that! @jilliam_gartner

  3. I love this! I am constantly spreading myself too thin. I have a really hard time saying no. Thank you for writing this! Definitely one of my favorite blog post you wrote! I also love the one about water because I have a hard time getting it all in! My IG handle is Kimberleejoy02.

  4. I really enjoyed this post, Heidi. So often we try to be everything to everyone at the cost of burning out or sacrificing ourselves. Learning and practicing “no” is a challenge for me- and I’m imaging so many others. Thank you for your shared thoughts and tips.
    IG handle: breannemosborne

  5. Love this post ?? so much great advice! I?m going to head out and buy myself a lavender candle! ??
    IG: @kaseymarie1980

  6. Self care is so important and yet so easily overlooked! No and prioritizing can go a looong way.
    IG: e_swell

  7. Hey there Heidi! I absolutely adore you and family. You all have wild personalities it makes my heart so happy! And I mean come on you and Chris are so pure hearted and encouraging it is a blessing to have people like you two in the health and fitness industry. Anyways everything you shared truly resonated with me. I am a people pleaser and I get that from my parents. Always saying yes and doing anything I can for others because well it makes me happy. But you are right, making time for yourself is just as rewarding! I keep saying I?ll treat myself to a massage and then don?t get around to it but darn gon it imma do it. I love the example of the yin-to-yang with your partner. My boyfriend and I are pretty spot on with that balancing each other out. It?s good to have your strengths and weakness complement one another, indeed makes a great team! Keep doing what you do Heidi! So thankful
    My IG handle is: @laurenbaronnn

  8. This is such an important lesson!! The power of the word no is something that I need to put into practice more often! Time to reprioritize my priorities!

    Instagram @emnem12

  9. Heidi, I love this post. ?No? is sometimes the hardest thing to say. Thank you for shedding some light.

    For your giveaway my IG handle is @mrshmdalton but I love you and that?s not why I originally came to your blog.


  10. This is my favorite! IG screen name is Betup. Learning to say no this year and putting me first has always been a struggle. But the more I say it and do it the easier it is getting. Realizing I?m worth way more and the time I can spend on me benefits my whole family. Finding my worth this year.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Join the Waitlist