What to say when they ask “Can I borrow your notes from yesterday?”

Handling conversations effectively is an art that requires a deep understanding of human psychology, emotional intelligence, and effective communication skills. When it comes to borrowing notes, a seemingly innocuous request can lead to feelings of unease, hesitation, or even resentment. So, what do you say when a friend asks to borrow your notes from yesterday?

First and foremost, acknowledge your friend’s request. A simple

Yeah, sure, I’d be happy to help!


Of course, I can lend you my notes!

can go a long way in showing that you’re willing to help. However, if you’re hesitant to share your notes, it’s essential to communicate your concerns in a polite and respectful manner.

If you’re worried about your friend not returning the favor or not putting in equal effort, you could say

Hey, I’d be happy to help you out, but I worked really hard on those notes. Can we find a way to work on them together instead?


I’m not sure I’m comfortable lending out my notes, but I’d be happy to quizz you on the material or help you understand the concepts better

Another approach is to set boundaries while still being helpful. You could say

I’m not sure I can lend you the entire notebook, but I can give you a summary of the key points from yesterday’s class


I’d be happy to review the notes with you, but I need to keep my original copy. How about we go over them together during lunch?

Remember, it’s essential to prioritize your own needs and concerns while still being a supportive friend. If you’re feeling overwhelmed or not comfortable sharing your notes, it’s okay to say

Hey, I’m still trying to get my head around the material myself. Maybe we can work on it together, and I can teach you what I know?

Here are some additional example sentences to help you navigate this conversation:

Sorry, I didn’t get a chance to organize my notes yet. Can I get back to you tomorrow?

I’m not sure I can lend out my notes, but I can introduce you to my study group. We can all work on it together.

That’s really sweet of you to ask! However, I need to focus on my own studying right now. Maybe we can quiz each other on the material instead?

I’m happy to help, but I need to keep my notes for now. How about we find an online resource or study guide to work on together?

I’m still trying to figure out the material myself. Want to work on it together and learn from each other?

Sorry, my notes are a bit of a mess. Can I offer to help you take notes in the next class instead?

I appreciate you asking, but I need to prioritize my own studying right now. Maybe we can catch up and study together another time?

That’s really nice of you to ask! However, I’ve got a lot on my plate right now. Can we talk about it later in the week?

I’m not sure I can lend out my notes, but I can summarize the key points for you. Would that help?

Sorry, I’ve got a lot of personal notes and anecdotes in there. Maybe we can discuss the material in person instead?

By using these strategies and example sentences, you can effectively handle conversations about borrowing notes while maintaining healthy boundaries and nurturing your friendship. Remember, effective communication is key to building trust and strengthening relationships. So, the next time someone asks to borrow your notes, take a deep breath, prioritize your needs, and respond with empathy and kindness.

Be kind ❤

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