Warren Buffett says there are two things you can’t buy: love and time.
Just like you can’t make someone weak at the knees with a snap of your fingers, you can’t convince the man upstairs to give you any more time on this earth.
Stop wasting it.
When I was a kid, I wanted to be a bit of everything: business owner, world-class wrestler, stuntman, teacher, athletic apparel designer, funniest guy in school, and the list goes on.
On top of that, I wanted to prove everyone wrong. I would get into Cornell come hell or high water (it took four tries, but I did it). I would start a business at age 13. I would do the fucking impossible. I would say yes to every opportunity that came my way.
My penchant for saying yes led to amazing experiences, but also led me down some pretty rocky paths. I had terrible grades and crappy SAT scores. I was running a pool-cleaning business in Queens that mostly serviced a bunch of mobsters. I tried my hand at trading on Wall Street where, although I was successful, I was spending countless late nights away from my family and stuck behind a desk.
I’m not saying I regret any of these things. I don’t. They made me who I am today.
But the best decision I ever made was saying hell no to continuing down each of those paths.
No more slacking off in school.
No more late nights away from home.
No more Wall Street.
I’d been saying yes for so long that I was setting myself up for failure. I was saying yes to things that didn’t fill my life with value and, in turn, I was saying no to myself. I was wasting valuable time.
By saying no, I finally said yes to myself. I’d been stuck working a job I wasn’t overly passionate about, not spending my time doing what I felt called to do—help others live a healthy, purpose-driven life. That was my true north, and that’s where I needed to put my focus.
Derek Sivers has a simple rule for making decisions: You either say HELL YEAH or no.
Are you bouncing off the walls at the thought of accepting that new job offer? If not, say no.
Would you rather do 1 million burpees than commit to going to that party this weekend? It’s a no.
Do you already feel overwhelmed by all the favors you’ve promised? N-O.
It’s time to say no to the things that are burning you out or bringing you down and HELL YES to yourself.
HELL YES to setting priorities. Yes is for the important stuff, the things that lead you toward your authentic self.
HELL YES to taking time for yourself. Don’t over-commit and stress yourself out. Say no to the events that don’t pique your interest or the jobs that aren’t worth your time so you can take some time to relax and recharge your batteries.
HELL YES to your health. Don’t burn yourself out by agreeing to every single request that comes your way. You can’t please everyone, and trying will only deplete your energy and compromise your immune system.
HELL YES to bettering yourself. You’ve only got so much time—don’t waste it living a life you’re not happy with.