Have you heard people say “If it’s not a ‘Hell Yes!’ then it ought to be a No”?
The idea is that if you tend to say yes to too many things (out of a sense of obligation or duty, or just because you haven’t really learned how to say no)… then you’ll end up scattering your energy, being unfocused and you can find yourself operating according to other people’s agendas instead of your own.
It’s a valid perspective, and I think it’s a great question to ask yourself:
Is This a ‘Hell Yes’?
If it is a ‘Hell Yes!’… then great! That’s a simple choice.
If not… well, I think just dismissing it as a ‘no’ can sometimes be a bit premature.
The reason I say that is because as a person who has a history of trauma I often find that my initial reaction to things that are outside my comfort zone is ‘no’.
‘No’ is my first port of call for anything that has an element of the unknown to it.
Often it’s not really a full and complete ‘no’ though… it’s more like “hang on, wait, this is not a yes just yet because I need some time to assess the risks.”
Then, if I give myself the time to think it over and to work out if I can control any of the risk factors, to see if I can get acquainted with the plan enough to be able to step a little outside my comfort zone without totally freaking out… then my initial ‘no’ might just turn into a ‘yes’.
So basically, for me, I have to work by the opposite principle: if it’s not a ‘Hell No!’ then it might be a ‘Yes’.
It’s at least a ‘Maybe’.
I do a lot of things that many people might consider to be risky. I’m an entrepreneur. I take some large financial risks. I put myself out there.
And yet, the fact is, the only time I ever feel a ‘Hell Yes!’ response is when the thing I’m considering is already well inside my comfort zone. The problem with that is: if it’s already inside my comfort zone then although it might be fun, it might feel easy, it may even be in my flow… it’s probably not going to make me grow.
If I followed the idea that “If it’s not a ‘Hell Yes!’ it should be a ‘No’”… I’d never do anything scary or uncomfortable or truly challenging.
That’s just me. And maybe it’s because I’m a little more wired for fear than most.
To counter-balance that, I also place a higher value on growth than I do on being certain. That’s why, despite the fact that I’m often scared about trying new things and moving outside my comfort zone, I’ll do them anyway. After a period of careful assessment.
However… having some misguided expectation that I’m not going to be scared, or that I’m always going to feel so brave that I can shout “Hell Yes!” in response to every challenge my soul wants to embark upon… Well, I think that’s too much pressure to put on myself!
I’m okay with coaxing myself into growth little by little. I’m okay with my fear, and I actually respect it… because I know that it’s just trying to keep me safe and alive. I don’t always let it stop me from stretching my wings, but I do value and respect the input of my fear enough to pause and really consider its point of view.
That’s why for me, if it’s not a ‘Hell No!’ then I give it time. Because after some careful consideration it may just turn into a ‘Yes’.
If this post was helpful for you, I’d love to hear from you about why. Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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To YOUR Abundance,
Julie Ann Cairns