How to avoid friction in your daily life

“97 percent of energy is spent on friction and conflicting directions.” — Dov Tsal

“42.7 percent of all statistics are made up on the spot.” — Steven Wright

To kick off the summer, let’s get silly while staying useful!

For this Weekly Happiness Challenge, we’ll walk through two skills that may help you be more:

  1. Focused
  2. Annoying.

(And no, having one without the other is not in this week’s scope…)

Just think of your last argument — how much energy did it suck from you and of your partner? Now think of all the things you have to do today, how many of these will bring real value if done right? How many of those will you have the time to do right? And how many are just something you have to do?

Wouldn’t it be great to learn how to say No in an effective manner to what brings no value, letting our Yes carry more weight?

Wouldn’t it be awesome to cut conflicts and misunderstanding at the roots?

We are going to take you through a week of challenges to help accomplish just this. Let’s go!

Happiness Challenge Day 1: Energy Bookkeeping

How much energy is wasted on blocking:

  • The Noise when you need to concentrate.
  • The conflicting thoughts when you need to do two things at the same time.
  • The frustration of doing things without understanding their need or purpose.

And think how much of it could be saved if you could:

  • Say a clear No (to others or yourself).
  • Reduce drastically being wrong, so you are certain of what you say and know how to stand behind it.

Let’s take a day to run a bookkeeping of how you spend your energy!

Download this mindfulness app for iPhone, or Android and set it to ring ten times during the day.

Each time it rings, ask yourself (and write down):

  • What was I spending my energy on now?
  • Is it a good investment?
  • What can I do to improve it?

Any insights? We’ll be discussing all in our exclusive Happy Melly Slack channel.

Happiness Challenge Day 2: Just say No

Saying No is a crucial part of focusing and taking control of your impact.

This is so important, I’ll say it again: Saying No is a crucial part of focusing and taking control of your impact.

But it doesn’t work until you:

  • Understand why this sentence is true.
  • Understand what blocks you from saying No.
  • Understand what blocks others from accepting your No.
  • And finally: practice, practice, practice…

Hence, today’s challenge is to:

Try the following:

Delay Tactics

The easiest way to practice is to have a Yes-free day.

  • Anytime your mind wants to say Yes, say instead: “Let me think about it, I’ll get back to you.”

Remember, you do it to practice saying No or delaying your Yes. It may be more burden than just saying Yes, but once you get the habit it will become a sinch!

The Just-Do-It Method

Just say No!

  • On this day, make it a habit!
  • Even if someone asks “May I have this seat?” or “May I say something?” respond with a No, but then apologise and say “Sure, just practicing saying no.”

The Accountant Method

Put ten buttons or coins in your right pocket, each time you say Yes pass a button from right to left.

  • How many are left in your right pocket by the end of the day?

Happiness Challenge Day 3: Being Right

Today we will continue our saying no practice.

Saying No Practice Time!

  • Pick an exercise from yesterday’s list and do it for the day.

Once finished practicing, let’s understand how to be right.

(Though you may say No to that, too!)

Being certain in what you say is an awesome superpower, with benefits including:

  • Imagine you could be certain of anything you say, able to defend it easily, and have no arguments.
  • Imagine all misunderstandings could easily be resolved.

How frictionless could your world become?

Well, today I’m gonna show you how to do exactly that!

All it requires is a mind-switch!

To be always right, all you have to do is speak only about things you are certain of, an expert on, and, preferably, The expert, The world’s #1 expert!

Think for a minute…

Do you have a domain of expertise? One you are the absolute expert on?

Only after you found one (or gave up) – read this post on how to stop being wrong.

And to close out the day — any No-saying insights you’d like to share?

Happiness Challenge Day 4: Practice makes perfect

This day and the next, practice, share stories of success and failure.

For the No-saying — choose your practice (again).

For being right: today make every sentence about you! Rephrase every sentence you hear from someone to make them the subject.

Yes, again, it is tedious, but that’s today’s Kata, and practice makes perfect!

Happiness Challenge Day 5: Wrap-up

Now sit back, relax and look back at the passing week, then answer the following questions:

  • Do you understand better the value of saying No?
  • Did you flex your Saying-No muscle this week?
  • What did you learn?
  • Do you understand the mindshift required to be right?
  • Did it help you avoid conflicts? Did it help you have more meaningful exchanges?
  • Did it help you understand people better?

Congratulations, you just earned your “Dr No & Mr./Ms. Right” certificates! 

This certificate authorizes you to speak with certainty, own your priorities and teach others!


Happiness Challenge Days 6,7: Rest

You deserve it!Blog Footer


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This article is written by Dov Tsal on July 3rd 2017.

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