In Order to Live a Happier Life, Say “No” More in 2022

Get More Time and More Energy By Being Thoughtful About Your Calendar

I’m a believer that one’s calendar is a very true representation of your priorities. If you feel like you’re not getting done the work you’re intending to accomplish, or are drained of energy by what (and who) you’re spending time with, perhaps looking at your schedule is one way to solve. I’m pretty fortunate that I’ve got more control of my day than many people on a more traditional company org chart, but I also believe that creating boundaries, saying ‘no’ more often, and so on, is a good way to reclaim your space. Here are a bunch of replies I used in December to say ‘no’ to requests for coffees, ‘picking my brain,’ sales calls, and so on. Copy and paste if you’d like. And share your favorite ‘kind declines’ with me on Twitter 🙂

Know that if you’ve received one of these from me, I’m not minimizing the credibility of your ask, or otherwise trying to suggest my time is more valuable than yours. But rather, time and energy is so scarce, that I’m very deliberate about where I’ve committed it, and Homebrew, Screendoor, and my family, are where it goes.

“I’m sorry I just can’t prioritize that right now but best of luck.”

“I know you’re not asking for a lot of my time, but I need to concentrate on getting some projects done and can’t let myself be distracted right now. Best of luck.”

“If you can provide some specific examples or questions you think I can be helpful on, perhaps I’ll be able to answer them here and we don’t need to worry about chatting live.”

“Can you provide a little more detail over email so I can make sure I’m a good use of your time.”

“I’m holding all my scheduled time back right now for our portfolio founders (and my family) but if you reply with some specific questions, I’ll do my best to answer via email or a Loom video if I think I can be helpful.”

“Thanks and appreciated meeting you as well. Don’t feel like we need to chat live right now but feel free to stay in touch.”

“I know this sounds weird but I’m only doing these sorts of conversations in 15 minute phone calls between X-Ypm on [days of the week]. I’d be happy to chat then if you still think it’s worth your time. Here’s my next availability…”