Saying “NO!” is a very simple way to refuse. However, native speakers of English say “no” in many different ways which you might not know yet. It’s important for you to learn all the ways in which we can say “no” in order to prevent misunderstandings. You should also learn to use these because in some situations, you need to use stronger language. I will teach you 25 ways to refuse in a strong and direct way. Depending on where you come from, this may not be usual in your home country or culture. But in English-speaking countries, being direct is very often the most appropriate behavior. You will learn expressions such as “No way, Jose”, “under no circumstance”, “out of the question”, “no chance”, “fat chance”, “not gonna happen”, and many more. By the end of this lesson, you will be able to say the simple and common word “no” with more variety than ever before. Take the quiz at https://www.engvid.com/25-ways-to-say-no-strongly
Next, watch my video on how to stop sounding weak:
Hi, everyone. This lesson is about strong ways to say NO. Lots of people are scared of that word, of saying no, so they want to know: „How can I say it politely? Or how can I not offend someone when I say: ‚no’?” And this lesson is not about that; this lesson is how to say „no” when you really mean it, because sometimes we do need to say „no”. It’s an important word, and we need to say it so that people respect us when we say „no”. So, I’ve got some different examples of situations where we might say „no”, and different examples of language we can use.
So, the first example here is a situation where somebody asks for your number, and I’m imagining a situation where you don’t want to give your number to that person, they’re hassling you, you’re not attracted to them, you don’t like them, you definitely don’t want to give them your number – here are some things people say.
First, a very common response is: „Sorry, I’ve got a boyfriend.” And people might say that because they think: „If I say I’ve got a boyfriend, then that’s why I can’t give you my number. I would if I could, but I’ve already got a boyfriend, so that’s why I can’t give it to you.” But in my opinion, this is not… this is not a strong enough no, so I’m going to cross that one out. Whether it’s true or not, you’ve got a boyfriend or you haven’t got a boyfriend, if you don’t want to give that person your number, use something a bit stronger and don’t worry about hurting their feelings in this situation, if they’re hassling you.
So, you could be more blunt. „Blunt” is another way of saying more direct. You can say: „I’m not interested.” Or you could say: „Not gonna happen. No. Not gonna happen.” This is… This is not standard English; this is slang – the way we would actually say it. We wouldn’t say: „Not going to happen”, because it’s not as… It’s not as fierce, so we shorten it to say: „Not gonna happen.”
Or you could say: „Not in a million years.” This is so impossible and so unlikely for you to ask for my number, the only thing I can say is: „Not in a million years.” You can keep asking me again, and again, and again for a million years, and the answer is going to be: „No”.
You could say: „No chance. No chance”, and that means: You have no chance with me; no chance. No chance.
If the… If the person who wants your number is coming on really strong, like they won’t go away; a lot of hassle, you can then say: „How many times do I have to tell you?!” You’re getting more serious, you’re saying it more like you mean it now, because you want this person to leave you alone.
A similar… A similar kind of strength of „no” for that situation is to say: „What part of ‚no’ don’t you understand? I’ve said ‚no’ to you already; this is the final straw. You’re really getting on my nerves now. What part of ‚no’ don’t you understand?” This makes you… This is like suggesting the other person is a bit stupid as well. „Don’t you understand ‚no’?”
And the last two, imagine if that person is really hassling you: „Leave me alone!” or „Go away!” Now, it is a little bit hard in the sense that when we… When we do get more direct and aggressive, we have to be careful in a sense as well, because with some people this will… This will work when you shout at them, like: „Leave me alone! Go away!” If you’re… If the way you say it is so strong and there’s a lot of power in your words, it can scare a lot of people off; they go. But some people react to aggression and the way you… The way you say things. So, if you shouted at them: „Leave me alone!” they might be like: „What’s your problem?” or something like that, so you always have to judge in the situation: Is it safe to use aggression with this person? It’s safe to say: „No”, but you have to decide how strong you can be. […]