Learn to be Assertive and Love it!

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Saying "no!"

Your sister is always asking you to watch her kids; your running buddy keeps dragging you to Spinning class, which you hate.

The solution: Take a deep breath so you sound calm and just say, "No, I'm not able to do that," says Simon Rego, PsyD, director of the cognitive behavioral training program at Montefiore Medical Center in New York City. If she pushes back, repeat, minus a word or two. "No. I'm not able." This may go on for several rounds.

"Each time, you shorten the phrase until you eventually just say no," says Rego. "It's extremely effective because it allows you to convey what you want without getting upset."

Next: Sticking with your values