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NO(c) 2023 by Ronnie Lee Johnson It is the hardest word to use and the most important word as well in the English language. Putting it plain and simple, it is the word, ‘No.’ I must admit that I am as guilty as anyone by not employing the word No when, indeed, I should have. No begs us to take on responsibility and reason that is in the best interest of our business as well as how we treat clients, customers and especially our family. However, we are all guilty of sweeping No under the rug. We often avoid No so no one’s feelings will get hurt, or so we can postpone a decision; even though we know deep down inside No needs to be said. Unfortunately, I know personally that I can only blame myself for not using this little two-letter word at times. No actually brings out the man or woman in us. We’re putting our foot down. We’re using our authority that will be in the best interest of our business management, family ties and telecasting how we respect the value of discipline. No can save you from lots of worries, stress and financial losses. For example, I had an opportunity once to invest in a business partnership. At the time it appeared to be lucrative, a giant opportunity and would be a wise investment. But after wrestling with this decision I realized No was a better way to go. I said, “No!” And thank goodness I did. Sadly, that partnership eventually became a sinking ship. One small reply. It is brief. To the point. Doesn’t have to be screamed or explosive. It is just one powerful, amazing answer at times. And those two tiny marks from our mouths or written out from the 26 letters of our English alphabet is the word No. Adopt it. Use it. Let it be your friend, not your foe. Remember, No sometimes is making room for a better yes in your life. It works like it has for centuries without end. No…No…No…No!

Ronnie Lee Johnson, LUTCF, AIF®

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