People often share that a big challenge in their day is taking on too much and not saying "no."
Because they want to help and because they don’t know how to say "no."
See if this helps.
If you find yourself blurting out "yes" under pressure, then practice not answering the question. Give yourself the chance to make a decision with less pressure. Give yourself some space.
Hans asks you to sit in on a meeting next Monday.
You reply "Let me get back to you."
Use that time to think about it and check whether it fits your priorities, then get back to them. Sometimes taking a breath allows you the strength to defer or explain why your schedule doesn’t allow time to do that thing well.
If you feel like you can make good choices on the spot, but need a reply that doesn’t mess with your schedule, try this. Focus on timing.
Boba asks "Can you prepare a …"
You reply: "When is the latest I can get this back to you?"
Now you have room to schedule the request in a way that fits your plan. Having control over when you do it may make the task more feasible.
If your schedule is packed but the person asking signs your paycheck, use if/then
Darth asks you to work on a new task that is needed right away.
You reply: "If I do this, I'm not going to be able to get to X, Y, and Z. Is that okay with you?"
This reminds them of the other projects you are working on for them and gets them involved in prioritizing.
And if Yoda asks for help, don’t say: "I’ll try."
May the force be with you!