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It is very hard to back out of an invitation without insulting the inviter. I just did this recently and the person was very insulted. I apologized and thanked them again for the invitation. I am not Superwoman. Clearly this is a sign that I need to get on the No Train more often. Haha, Ms.

I agree with the honesty as the best policy… I believe people can feel white lies and get upset by them.

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I do the same thing. It basically teaches yourself a lesson. If you say yes then you do it. Next time I am more careful! Thanks marie for reminding me to buy a ticket on the NO train, I totally overcommit and get burnt out. Also, I cancel on the fun stuff to do work I overcommitted to, so great reminder. The truth never hurts.


And it sucks! The craziest white lie I ever told was at my first job ever. After the first day, I was told to take my clippers home and clean them. So glad you are addressing this here Marie! In any situation WE are the most important part of the equation-hard to remember at times, especially when guilt is involved.

Place a hand on your high heart as you say the words you need to say, and remember that you and your needs matter. Incredibly freeing! The more you take the NO train the easier it gets. They would rather defend their dishonesty on the grounds that it might hurt others. Therefore, having rationalized their phoniness into nobility, they settle for superficial relationships. Wondering where I can find the article mentioned in the video… Thanks, Bianca.

Matthew — our incredible MarieTV crew has some amazing men. I have gotten really good at getting on the no train…but had a particular situation today that had me reconsider a commitment. Thanks for the reminder that there is always a way to back out gracefully. And is there a way to search your site for stuff like this? Thanks as always for such great advice! What a great question and message. Smiled all the way through watching — probably because I could see myself in the situation. A friend had asked myself and another friend to help her set up her art show in NYC.

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The artist friend is very persuasive, well-known everyone wanted to be her friend and intimidating, so my other friend and I reluctantly said yes. Then a week before the show I backed out, expecting back out lash. Instead she was thankful that I took care of myself. My other friend then felt even more pressure, went to NYC, and was stressed out for weeks. The other friend and I talk about that situation whenever we find ourselves in similar situations.

Thanks for sharing, Jan. I think when you respect yourself by taking the time for self-care, for example , then others will respect you too. What a timely video! I just wrapped up a 3 day weekend workshop at my studio featuring out of town guest teachers. It was a huge success and well worth the workload. However heading into the next business day I was drained and succumbed to a 24 hour bug.

I had no choice but to cancel my teaching schedule to recover and also to prevent exposing my clients to my virus. Honesty paid off as my clients were understanding.

But the real lesson for me was to have the forethought to plan ahead and give myself a day of rest well beforehand in irder to not have to cancel. Thank you for reminding me that the truth is always appropriate and honors my soul and theirs.

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I did say no, in a big way. I have never been more clear than I am right now. Thank you Marie! Working hard for something you love is called passion.

It was hard but liberating. I also learned how much they valued me when they asked me to do a side project at my leisure that actually was more of who I am. I am fitting in when I can, the pressure is off and we have continued to be friends. When I think about all the anguish I went through before telling them…but I learned so much about myself and the process. When I told a client that my initial estimate about how long a certain project was going to take had been totally wrong, he actually thanked me for telling him early in the project.

In a phone conversation he told me he loved to work with me because I was so reliable. So counter-intuitively, telling him I was not going to make the deadline made him perceive me as a reliable person. What has helped me most, beside adding some extra time to all my estimates, is that I keep a very good and current overview of all the commitments I have already made — both private and business.

This makes it very easy to say no to anything new coming my way that is not super-important to me. I love being on the No Train: I really love how it feels to say no, I am doing this…. I realised doing B-School that actually it was totally my thing; that I was allowing myself to default with yes, and regret it later.

It had an immense positive effect on my whole work-life balance, when I was able to say, actually, no. More of a burn-out than physically making myself spontaneously ill, but I do still find it difficult to not say yes, when technically I can actually do a thing- I find it hard to put my time first, but am on a learning curve!

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I notice that, when I simply explain clearly that I am up-to-my-ears, and late on several projects, this keeps it in perspective for the other person- instead of my racking my brains for a significant particular excuse. I love being able to state the truth: keeps it all so straightforward! This will forever be imprinted in my mind…Your tips along with entertainment are always a quality gig that make a difference!

My biggest blunder with not getting on the no train was saying yes to work with another business owner to help with an event. I ended up doing an average job and really disappointed myself and let them down too. I have found it pretty hard to forgive myself ever since as it was so not like me to do something like this.

That situation taught me that if your intuition really says no then listen to it and give yourself permission to say no without losing face. I was just in this situation recently when I got back from a long personal trip and overextended myself probably because I was feeling guilty for taking a few weeks off. However, I soon realized that I was not going to be able to do a great job if I was spreading myself so thin.

I respectfully and gracefully pulled out of all my commitments that were still in the concept phase no money had exchanged hands and gave myself permission to say no to all subsequent inquiries until I had a chance to slowly move things one by one off my plate.


I have to admit, the idea of telling a little white lie definitely crossed my mind, but as you said, honesty was the best way to go. Love the video, Marie. So true. People collecting for good causes! They try to make you feel so guilty if you say no! Honesty never changes its story.

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I definitely agree that honesty is the answer. I appreciate it from my friends and acquaintances as well. I was supposed to do… insert activity. Easy peasy, one two threesy.