#107 – You Can Ask for Anything (and the Answer May Be No)

So many people struggle to speak up or make a request to get their needs or wants met, so I tell you all the time that you can ask anyone for anything. But just as you have the freedom to ask, the other person has the freedom to say “no” if they so choose. (They can also say “yes” or negotiate a different agreement with you.) An email I received recently is a perfect example of both this freedom to ask, and the freedom to decline.

Biggest Takeaways From Episode #107:

  • It’s better to ask and get a “no” than to just not ask. Often, people will even be happy or excited to be able to do something for you.
  • When you ask someone for something, the other person is completely free to say either “yes” or “no”—or to negotiate another agreement.
  • A recent email inspired this episode, and gives me the opportunity to demonstrate how to receive a request and how to say “no” if the request doesn’t work for you.

Highlights from Episode #107:

  • Vicki welcomes listeners to the episode, and explains the inspiration for today’s topic. [00:39]
  • We hear about the three possible answers that someone can give when you make a request. [02:41]
  • Vicki reads the email that she received recently that inspired this episode. [04:10]
  • We hear a quick aside from Vicki to clarify that she absolutely wants women to respect and honor themselves before she continues to read the email. [09:13]
  • Vicki completely agrees about the negativity of certain demeaning words, she explains. However, the name of the podcast is not at all the equivalent of calling women the B-word. [10:13]
  • The name of the podcast was inspired by a quote that Vicki saw in 2015. [11:31]
  • Vicki reiterates that you can ask for anything. In the case of the email request she received, the answer is “thank you for your feedback, and no. I wish you all the best.” [13:43]

Links and Resources:


Hi, I'm Victoria!

I love guiding my clients on a journey of Returning to the authentic truth of who they are, Reclaiming what is theirs, and Receiving everything that is meant for them.


  1. SB on October 1, 2020 at 5:49 am

    Hi Vicky!

    I’m sorry that my question doesn’t exactly go with the topic of this podcast, but I’ve been meaning to ask you something for months now and I figured the latest podcast comment section might be the place to reach you.

    What would you recommend doing in the situation where a close person of mine is telling me a lot about their problems and life, to a point where I feel like I am just their “emotional trash can” or a “therapist”. They are not even asking advice or my opinion, nor are they asking if it’s a good moment for me to hear them out. I could be a wall. They start pouring their emotional stuff on me at random times a day when we happen to be in the same room, or during phone calls. I don’t have the capacity or skills to just sit there and listen to negative things for 20 minutes or more straight. How do I tell them to stop nicely and put a boundary around this so that it wouldn’t happen in the future? I have tried excusing myself from the phone call (“Sorry, I have to go to sleep now / do other things”), but it’s harder in real life. I have previously told them that it’s hard for me to listen to negative difficult topics like that, but haven’t set a clear boundary.

    Thanks in advance!

  2. Stephanie on October 1, 2020 at 11:34 am

    I had two big take aways from this episode. Firstly, I can see the power of asking clarifying questions. Imagine if the emailer had simply written, “Dear Vicki, thank you for your work. Would you please explain why you name your podcast as you do? And the second take away is here is an excellent example of how not to allow someone to use, ahem, “boundaries” to control and manipulate. This was a really helpful episode. Thanks so much.

    • Vicki Tidwell Palmer on October 1, 2020 at 9:09 pm

      Thank you Stephanie, and you are so right. There are many ways to approach a situation that is triggering. In general, it’s best to lead with curiosity and give the benefit of the doubt, rather than coming out with both barrels blazing!

      We are all doing the best we can.

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