Monthly Archives: May 2015

When you need to say ‘No’, say this

I confess: I find it really hard to say ‘no’.

This could be because I am a novelty-seeker, a trait that has served me well on some occasions but, on others, it has led to unnecessary stress and impacted negatively on my ability to deliver on what really matters.
It could also be because I am generally an agreeable person, who tries to help out and does not like to let others down. For instance, two days ago I received this e-mail inviting me to join an advisory group. This is a role that sounds really boring and time consuming, has very few upsides and a lot of downsides. I really do not want to say ‘yes’. Yet, I haven’t yet managed to hit the reply button and say ‘no’, because I think that this person will struggle to find someone who wants to do that job and I want to help her.

So, I was delighted to come across this list of 10 suggestions on how to say no in an assertive way, taken from the book “The Black Academic’s Guide to Winning Tenure—Without Losing Your Soul”, written by Kerry Ann Rockquemore and Tracey Laszloffy. These are my favourites:


How do you say no?

UPDATE: I just replied to that e-mail. I said no 🙂

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Common writing mistakes and why we make them by @jbernoff

My better-half sent me this article explaining why we make certain writing mistakes, and offering tips on how to correct them. The article, also included this handy table summarising the main points:


Image source: here

Go ahead. Bookmark it, make it your screen saver, stick it to your wall… whatever. Just keep it.

Happy writing x

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Flush it down. It’s therapeutic.

Not long ago, I read an interview with somebody who was recovering from cancer. She said that she had tried to maintain a positive attitude throughout, and explained how she dealt with her dark moments:


Fortunately, I never faced moments as dark as this lady’s, but once I did flush someone’s picture down the toilet. It felt great!

Next time something or someone is getting to you, try this. It is very therapeutic.

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It’s a girl

I checked the news at lunch time, and ITV’s royal correspondent, Eve Pollard, was commenting on the birth of the new princess, the second child of Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge. Very excitedly, she said that the new born would be “the youngest fashion icon in the world“, right from the moment she left hospital.

What a depressing thought!

A girl is born in 2015. In a modern, developed country. And the most exciting thing this commentator found to say about her is that she will be known for her looks.

Eve Pollard

PS – At the time of writing this post, Eve Pollard’s comment is available here.


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