Learning to Say Yes to Hidden Opportunities
In our overstimulated, overworked, and overindulged lives, there’s a huge movement to say “No” to requests for your time. There are books about it, TED talks about it, and life coaches around the world pride themselves in their online courses that teach people how to say “NO” so that they can focus on themselves.
No, however, is negative. And there have been plenty of studies that say your mental health will be better if you can get rid of the negative in your life and replace it with positive. For instance, “I have to go to work” is replaced with “I get to go to work.” And something like “This stupid long wait at the doctor’s office” is replaced with “A time where I can introspect and slow down from my go go go life.”
Instead of learning to say “NO”, I say learn to say “YES.”
Saying “YES” to More Opportunities
Now wait a minute, isn’t the goal to reduce the number of commitments, and simplify life?
That’s absolutely the goal. The problem that we have, especially when you’re in a sales related role, or as an entrepreneur, is the idea that you have to be everywhere doing all the things. It causes burnout and a lot of hours spent on unproductive or unpaid tasks.
So instead of saying “YES” to that volunteer position; instead of saying “YES” to helping your cousin’s friend move; instead of saying “YES” to leading that mastermind; start saying “YES” to yourself.
The opportunity has come up that you can take yourself out to afternoon coffee. Deadlines have been met, new projects have yet to start, and there is actually down time in the afternoon. So you schedule, with yourself, a one-on-one session at your favorite coffee time.
The opportunity has come up that you can spend a Thursday at the museum (or, really anywhere you want). Because you’re worth it, and you love to do it, and this is something important to you.
The opportunity has come up that you get to be home for dinner, bath time, story time, and bed time. You don’t have to miss those kids’ events because you’re at work. You have said “YES!” to having a strong and healthy home life.
And because you’re saying yes to yourself, you have a great excuse to now say no.
Every “YES” Means you’re Saying “NO” Elsewhere
Here’s the scenario. It’s 2pm on a Wednesday afternoon. You are heading out to your coffee date with yourself. It has been on your calendar for a week now; it’s set in stone.
Business associate, let’s call him Ted, calls you up and asks if you can help hammer out the details on his project that’s due tomorrow. Sorry, Ted, I have a meeting that goes from 2 to 3.
Because you said “YES” to yourself, you have a valid excuse to say “NO” to something that isn’t going to be fruitful. Ted, after all, should have prepared long in advance and not waited until the last minute.
Every time you say “YES” to something, you are saying “NO” to something else. Unless the new opportunity is vastly superior to the one you have already said “YES” to, then your calendar is full.
Say “YES” to TEDx Billings
Do you have ideas worth spreading? Are you keen on seeing the community of Billings grow? Then you need TEDxBillings!
An independently sponsored TED event, TEDxBillings is all about making the place we live a better place. Say “YES” to a better life.