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How to reject others politely?

If your leader ask you to overwork during this weekend, but you have an appointment with your family or your friends. How to reject him politely?


Please discuss about this topic in English, thank you!

I’m looking forward to your reply!




It's quite funny to hear this question, as it's hard for me to understand how can anyone ask you to overwork in your free time. But maybe that's normal in China. I think, your weekend is your time and you're the only one to decide what to do with it. If you have your plans, you should say something like "I'd like to help you on Monday/Tuesday/..., but I have an appointment for Saturday and usually I'm staying with my family/friends at the weekends. If I won't go, it will hurt their feelings. I could help you if you asked earlier, on Friday, for example." - something like this (I don't know your situation and your relationship with that leader, I also don't know how much is that work important for you and whether you can lose it by rejecting it). 
Can you explain me, who is that "leader" and what is that work exactly? Is it part time job or some school work?

Thank you for your advice. Well, overtime work is very popular situation in my country, sometimes it can be a company culture, the rule is you can’t leave the office until your leader leaves work… the leader is my Direct supervisor, and we are organizing a business meeting, she wants me to arrange the venue, since our time will be a little limit next week.

"Sorry, but I have a previous comittment." That lets the other person know that I'm busy, but it doesn't tell them if I am busy with a volunteer project, a date, other work, or something else.

That's cool! you know, I wish I could have that ability to say no to my boss, but for now, if I said that it must be my trouble

Vivian, we are in China.

So do it in Chinese way.

Refuse and being polite.

I've done something like this once. Guess what?

my supervisor was not angry at all.

On the contrary, since then, every time she wanted me to overwork, she asked me in a  very careful way.

This is the thing, you win the repect and your free time by yourself.

Just say, sorry, I already have a plan with do....(It's not because I don't want to help on this. I have a plan first, so I can't help you)

They will be so disappointed if I can't be with them. The plan cannot be cancelled (further reason)

I can and will finish the work next week. (suggesting overwork is not necessary and give her a promise)


Yes, as Bing Bing said, it's very important to let others know about your borders. If your plans are more important than work for you, you should let your leader know you can't overwork now, not when they've already got used to asking you for help any time they need.

umm you have to say : my dear boss it's my pleasure to help in the weekend but unfortunatly I have already made my plans and I can't for this time may be in the next times we well sorry for that but i have to apologise

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