While I don’t necessary mind this type of method for collecting money by charity groups, I find it awkward when you have to tell these people no. You could have a perfectly legitimate reason for saying no: you gave to them last week, you’re out of coins/bills, you don’t have it in the budget, you’re in a hurry, etc… Still, regardless of the reason, you’re still telling them no…and it’s awkward. Or at least I feel awkward. Maybe I have trouble saying no (boundary problem? …maybe) Well, I’ve got a remedy for this uncomfortable situation. Here’s a magic sentence my wife taught me to say in response to these situations:
“Not today, thank you.”
Said with a smile, this sentence can work wonders. It’s a polite response and implies you are a giving person but choose not to give right now. It’s empowering. I challenge you to try this next time you’re caught off guard and asked for money.
The past few years my wife and I have tried to pick a few charities we are comfortable giving to, and give a set amount. This way, we stay within budget and remain intentional with our giving, which helps us to feel that our money is going to a worthy cause.
By the way, the magic sentence above can also be used in most retail situations when asked if you want to join their club, sign up for a store credit card or product warranty, or any other sales pitch.