Saying no is an awfully difficult thing to do, more so when it involves declining an invitation. Read the tips given here and learn how to politely turn down an invitation, without causing hurt.

How To Decline An Invitation

If a social event is burdening you as a social obligation, it is always better to avoid attending it. Another instance when you have to decline invitations is when you suffer from the dearth of time. However, you need to remember that an invitation has to be declined politely and gracefully. Your refusal has to be courteous and presented in a civilized manner. You need to appreciate the fact that you were invited, with the most genuine feelings. This article teaches you how to turn down an invitation in the most humble way. Try to follow the tips given below the next time you have to turn down an invite.
Politely Declining Invitations
Read The Invitation Carefully
In case of written invitations, one needs to read the wordings carefully, to frame a satisfactory reply. If it says R.S.V.P, a response is expected on whether you plan to attend the event or not. If it says “regrets only”, a reply is expected only if you are not going to attend. If a response card is attached with the invitation, fill it immediately and send it to the concerned party. It is important to send your personal regrets to decline an invitation in the most humble manner.
Don’t Forget To Thank The Inviter
As an invitee, you must acknowledge that the other person has taken out time to invite you. It is your responsibility to thank the inviter, no matter whether you plan to attend the function or not. The fact that you have been considered to be one of the invitees for an occasion is reason enough to feel humbled. Failure to express thanks, especially when you are declining the invitation, may make you sound rude and arrogant.
Be Honest With Your Refusal
Give a truthful response, but to the extent that it doesn’t hurt the feelings of the inviter. Many-a-times, we just don't feel like going to an event, though there is no valid reason behind it. One can’t afford to be brutally honest at such times, as it would hurt the other person's feelings. However, if there is a compelling reason for being absent, don’t cook stories and convey the point straight across. Offering a lie, as a reason for declining an invitation, will also make you feel guilty.
Procrastinate When Required
If you are being invited verbally, in a face-on meeting, and you are not sure as to whether you will attend the event, you can forge a delay by responding with a request to check your schedule. The actual response can be held up for a while. There is nothing wrong in buying time for framing a suitable reply, rather than not attending the event after agreeing initially. Usually, it is difficult to directly decline an invitation on the inviter’s face.
Conclude On A Positive Note
While turning down an invitation, whether you are saying so in person or in writing, it is always nice if you conclude your refusal positively. You can say something like - had it been on a different date or time, you would have surely been present. Showing interest will save you from offending the inviter and soften your denial as well. It is important to not let your decline cast a shadow on further interactions.

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