“She’s not interested,” is what I thought to myself.
I use my calendar for a to do list. If something doesn’t get done, I just drag it to another day. I looked over calls I didn’t make yesterday, dragging them to new time slots. I picked this idea up from Peter Bregman. I was setting up my calendar for the day. I didn’t want to move this call to another day. I wanted to leave it behind. I made the decision for her.
My stomach sank the moment the thought, “She’s not interested,” ran through my head. I felt my hesitation. I held myself back. I avoided reaching out.
I decided for her what she was interested in without asking. I was making an assumption and making an ass of me, and me alone. By deciding for her, I decided to hide instead. The decision was self-limiting. And it limited possibilities for her. I was cheating two people.
- “Why don’t you ask her out?” “She wouldn’t want to go out with me”
- “How come you’re not speaking to investors?” “They wouldn’t be interested in my idea.”
- “Have you ask your client if they want to buy more.” “They already bought a lot. I don’t want to ask for too much”.
- “Did you find out if that prospect is going to do business with you?” “I don’t want to ask too soon.”
- “What did they say about the promotion?” “I didn’t ask … I don’t think they think I’m ready.”
There’s a question behind all of these “What if they say no?” You’re afraid of the answer. I understand. I am, too. If don’t ask, you won’t know.
- What if she’s aching to go out with you and because you were too afraid to ask, she winds up with some jackass.
- What if the investor was the perfect partner for you and you both get 100% of nothing.
- What if your client was just too busy to ask for more and they run out at a critical time?
- What if that prospect can’t wait any longer and buys a lesser product from someone willing to ask for the business
- What if they have the perfect position for you but fill it with the wrong person because they didn’t know you were interested?
You can choose to decide the answer for them and wonder “What if I had asked?” Or you choose to ask and know. Who are you to answer the question for them anyway?
Who are you to decide?