Q: Dave, it is great to meet you. Can you tell us a bit about your coaching background.

Dave: I have been an independent coach for 16+ years and been fortunate to Coach thousands of people, from the Corporate world to Education, SME to private individuals. My coaching work focuses around creating the right mindset for success and helping people to get out of their own way. Whilst much of what I say people will already know, understand, and feel is common sense, I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase: “The use of common sense is not common practice.”

Q: Yes Dave, and I am sure many of us are guilty of not using our common sense at times. Can you tell us what some of the common reasons are that people come to you for coaching?

Dave: People come from all walks of life. From Multi Millionaires and business owners through to entrepreneurs, students, members of the general public and other Coaches, and one common theme always stands out: that they have a huge passion for what they do, yet are their own worst enemies in letting that passion lead them to overwhelm, stress, and burnout. People are often awesome at giving advice too, but poor at applying it to themselves. How often have you said these things to other people but should be really saying it to yourself?

“If you just focused a bit more, think how much more you’d be able to do…”

“Imagine what could happen if you put more effort in…”

“Changing your old habits would make a huge difference for you…”

“Stop being so negative, you need to be a bit more positive…”


Q: I think, again, many of us are guilty of that too!!

Dave:  Listening to your own advice will honestly make the biggest difference to your wellbeing. So many people I meet put their own mental balance and wellbeing way down the list they have in their head, when it needs to be at the top. Think about it like this. You put your phone on charge over night or throughout the day to keep them working when you need them. There is no difference between this and an individual’s mental state. The more fully charged it is, the better and more effective that person will be.

Q: Yes that makes sense – we are all quick to make sure our phones have charge and take great lengths to do so.

Dave: There are many strategies, tools, techniques, and mechanisms that can help you feel more in control, more balanced, and more effective. Far too many to mention here. So I’ll focus on one that comes up time and time again across all sectors and at all level, the power of saying “No”.

Q: That is easier said than done, although I have heard of people who commit to only saying yes to everything to see what new doors open for them.

Dave: There is a skill to it that allows for “No” to be said without fear of consequences, nor out of sheer bloody-mindedness. The cumulative effect of saying “Yes” to things that should be a “No” leads to pain. That pain often comes in the form of stress, sickness, burnout, anxiety, or emotional imbalance, along with a whole host of other negative effects. That pain can then lead to a real low: mentally, physically, emotionally, or indeed all three. Yet when that pain is over, when that low is reached, when someone has slammed their hand on a table and said “Enough!” they come back from it with a different sense of things. Saying ‘no’ then becomes easy but the pain could have been avoided.

Q: OK Dave, so tell us how we can look to saying no with confidence.

Dave: Firstly, we need to make a conscious decision to interrupt our gut reaction to say yes. Then you need to think about what is your fear around saying “No”? What do you think will happen? You don’t need to wait for the pain to come before learning to say no. It can be avoided. You don’t need to suffer before you make the changes you know you need to make now.

Q: Saying No is often not something we have been brought up to say – it is a pretty tricky skill to learn after many years. Whats the quickest way to feel more comfortable with it?

Dave: Here are three questions to ask yourself today:

– What’s the first key thing I need to start saying “No” to right now?

– What do I need to say “Yes” to right now that will have the biggest impact for me?

– What’s the best that can happen if I do this right now?

I encourage everyone to say “No” more often. Say no to stress, say no to being overworked, say no to anxiety, say no to feeling overloaded, say no to feeling out of balance. Say no to all these things and start to say yes to your health, yes to your well-being, yes to your relationships, yes to your effectiveness, yes to your passions, and yes to your purpose.

Q: Thank you Dave, we are really glad you said ‘yes’ to this interview too!


A guest post authored by the late David Jessop, The Outsourcing Way Founding Resident Expert

A Life and Success Coach between 2002-2019, Dave worked in the Corporate world, with SMEs, in the Education Sector and with a range of private clients.