Good Medicine From Dr. No

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Tuesday, July 29, 2008

I pumped my fist and said, "Yes!" upon reading the July 28 front-page article "Senate's 'Dr. No' Spurs Showdown Over Spending." Sen. Tom Coburn exemplifies the common sense, discipline and fortitude that are so often lacking in our government today, as well as in many individuals.

A couple of years ago, I came across a description of the virtues of the word "no" that was included in the book "Mastering Monday" by John D. Beckett. I would encourage people to post this reminder in a prominent place:

" 'No' may be the most efficient time-saver in the English language.

"What it lacks in grace is more than offset by its brevity. You don't equivocate when you say 'no,' though you may risk offense. Used with discretion and appropriate garnishes, 'no' can save you hours of time.

" 'No' returns responsibility to its rightful owner. 'No' enables you to focus on your priorities. 'No' protects you from your own good heart.

"Do not scorn the pungent clarity of 'no.' It can be your ticket to success."

Just think of the health benefits of employing "no" when tempted to eat another doughnut or to waste time in front of the TV rather than exercise.

Consider the financial rewards of saying 'no' to buying items that are not needed and are not in your budget; and the physical, mental and other benefits of saying 'no' to peer pressure, drugs, alcohol abuse, casual sex, etc. Stress is much reduced, and happiness increased, when we can tell ourselves and others "no" and mean it. Those "in the no" know.

KATHLEEN S. ROCHELLE

Hamilton


© 2008 The Washington Post Company

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