Let’s start with a few questions. Do you:
feel comfortable asking friends/family for things?
feel comfortable asking for something even if the answer might be no?
feel like it's ok to make requests at work?
believe that there's no harm in simply asking?
Or does the thought of asking for something bring on a cold sweat and fill you with dread?
As humans, we are social creatures by nature, and being quarantined with the same few people for weeks at a time can create conflict between even the most understanding of people.
Learning how to communicate effectively with others can be tricky, especially when it seems as though messages are getting misinterpreted all the time.
Sam Ntatalika explains why this might be the case:
It explains cross-cultural awkwardness, too: we Brits can get bewildered doing business in Japan, because it's largely a guess culture, yet we can perceive Russians as rude, because they tend to be diehard askers.
And remember: Even if it feels uncomfortable, "I'm afraid that won't be possible" remains the gold standard. Giving a reason or excuse can invite negotiation. The best way to say no is to just say no.