Rooting For a YES, Staying Strong If You Get a NO

There are at least two types of requests we make on a regular basis.  One is the “Almost Guaranteed YES” request.  We make this type of request and we’re practically certain that we will receive a “YES” in response.

A good example of this type of request is checking out at the supermarket.  When we get to the front of the line, if we have the proper payment, we are almost completely certain that the clerk will respond positively to our request to buy food.  There’s virtually no chance that the clerk will shake his head and make us put the food in our cart back on the shelves.

“Almost Guaranteed YES” requests cause us little anxiety because we are almost certain that we’ll get what we desire.

Then there’s a second type of request that can cause us ample anxiety and cause us to act in ways that are frankly funny.  This is the “Maybe Yes, Maybe No request.”  This second type of request can be much more tricky for us because when we make this request we’re truly uncertain if we will receive a “Yes” or “No” in return.

I’ve noticed that we may cope with this uncertainty surrounding a “Maybe Yes, Maybe No request” in several unproductive ways.

Sometimes we fall into the “I Don’t Care” mode when we’re making our request so that we won’t feel hurt if we get a “NO”.  This is a tempting tactic because pain is, well, painful.  However, when we numb ourselves to our desire to have our request fulfilled, we may well influence the person making the decision without meaning to.   For who wants to say, “YES” to a request issued by somebody who doesn’t appear to care if his or her request is granted?

Or we go in the opposite direction of numbness and become so anxious that we oversell the person that we’re making the request of.  We oversell the person on the importance of them saying “YES” to our request to the point they feel manipulated and as if they are not totally free to say “NO” to us.  This kind of pressure can produce all kinds of responses, but probably not the wholehearted “YES” that we truly desire.

Rooting for a “YES” is an art form because it involves staying passionate and excited about your request.  AND at the same time not overselling it.  I’ve found that striking this balance takes practice, practice, practice….

AND more practice…

Then what happens if the person whom you’re making a request of puts the two letters “N” and “O” together and says “no,” “NO” or even “NO!!!!” to you?

One affirmation that may help you to stay strong when receiving a “No” is to repeat to yourself, “Who I am is priceless.  YES!  I’m far more expansive than any ‘No’ I could receive.”

It’s also important to remember to say “YES” to the wholeness of the person who said “NO” to you, because it’s sometimes easy to be frustrated and bitter with that person. (This isn’t fun for either of you and also lowers the likelihood of them being excited and saying “YES!” to your requests in the future.   An affirmation you could say to yourself in regards to the person who said “No” to you might be, “YES! (insert person’s name) is priceless and far more expansive than any “No” he (or she) ever could give.

Repeating these affirmations, as well as, doing whatever relaxation exercises you find effective, will hopefully help the charge you feel around receiving a “NO” to gradually dissipate.

Once the charge dissipates, let the fun begin again as you make new requests.

Life is amazing and expansive.  There’re many people out there waiting to say “YES” to your requests.  Find them and ask for what you truly want.

Game of the Day

How can you root for a “YES,” and still stay strong if you get a “NO?”


Jason Freeman is a professional writer, and a one-of-a-kind public speaker.  He is the founder and CEO of Heroic Yes! Productions. Jason has an MFA in Poetry from the University of Nebraska.  He knows the pain of perceiving one’s life through a lens of limitation and also the thrill of moving beyond that mindset.  For more information on Jason’s powerful message, go to



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