Are you the person that everyone turns to when they need something? While it's wonderful to be helpful, it's also important to take care of yourself. Here are common requests – and how to say no when it becomes an inconvenience to you:

  • “Can you drive us to school again?” When the weather outside is frightful, of course you should drive your children to school if you can. Otherwise, haul out their bikes or walk together. This is a great opportunity to teach children to have a healthy lifestyle.
  • “I need you to come over again – please, I'm your mother.” Sometimes assistance is needed doing chores, meal preparation, etc., and relatives don't know how to get them done other than asking a close family member to do them. In that case, consider arranging for help through an outside service. For example, line up a food service program or hiring a cleaning service, such as MOLLY MAID, to clean your relative's home every other week. Don't overwhelm yourself trying to do everything on your own.
  • “Can you take on a double shift? Someone called in sick.” Sometimes it's more important to get the necessary rest, or to spend time with your family, than to put in another shift at work. It's important to weigh what's most important and what isn't.  
  • “We're going away for the weekend.  Can you please take care of the cat again?” While it's important for neighbours to help each other out, it's also important to draw the line sometimes. If your neighbour has asked one too many times, perhaps you might suggest a few pet sitting services or alternate friends.


If possible, it's great to say yes when these requests come in:

  • Volunteering for a good cause
  • Quality time with family
  • A fun night out with friends