The question you must ask before you say "yes" again

As you know, this month, I’m talking about time.  Where your time is going. How to create more of it. And how to make the most of it.


While I love to remind you that anything is possible (and it is!), time has a constraint. We all have 168 hours a week24 hours a day. So far, no-one has been able to create more hours. 


We can’t speed time up (for boring meetings or flight delays). 


And we can’t slow it down (for weekends, children growing up or while we’re on vacation). 


Because of this simple fact, this equation exists:



Saying “Yes” to something = “Saying No” something else



When you say “yes” to something, you inevitably say “no” to something else. 


You have to. 


You cannot say “yes” without saying “no” to something. 


It’s the law of time, and it’s simple math. 


“No” is not inherently a bad word. It’s important to say. And in fact, often we end up saying “no” without even realizing it.


My challenge to you is to get conscious of what you are saying “no” to in order to say “yes”. 


So, what does the law of time look like in the real world?


Your best friend invites you to Happy Hour on Friday night. You want to say “YES” (and make it a double!). 


By saying “yes” to Happy Hour, you’re saying “no” to many other things:

  • You’re saying “no” to working late. 
  • You’re saying “no” to going home right after work.
  • You might be saying “no” to a workout after work.
  • You’re saying “no” to volunteering for your favourite organization.


Some of these “no’s” are reasonable and even responsible. Some might be interpreted as “the wrong choice”.  The reality is, “no’s” exist every time you say “yes”. 


And only you can decide if they are the right “no’s” for you.



Here’s another example:

Your boss/client asks you for extra support on a new project and for you to present the results.

  • You’re saying “yes” to the opportunity to be exposed to a new part of the business.
  • You’re saying “yes” to a new experience.
  • You’re saying “yes” to winning brownie points with the boss/client.
  • You’re saying “no” to coming in at a normal time every morning this week.
  • You’re saying “no” to an hour of sleep each night.
  • You’re saying “no” to a lame meeting you didn’t want to go to anyway.


You’re probably getting the idea by now. 


As you can see, not all “yes’s” are good. AND not all “no’s” are bad. 


If your goals are currently centered on creating new career opportunities, and you’re feeling recharged from a recent vacation, the “yes’s” might be worth the “no’s”. 


If you feel like your boss/client is taking advantage of you, or you’re burned out, those “no’s” might be unacceptable for you this week. 


It’s up to you to be sure you are saying both the right “yes’s” and the right “no’s” for you and the life you want to create.


The bottom line is that you want to shift the equation in your favour:



Saying “Yes” to something > “Saying No” something else



The next time you are about to say “yes”, ask yourself:

  • What am I saying “yes” to?
  • What am I saying “no” to?
  • Is the “yes” advantage greater than what I’m saying “no” to?


Then, act accordingly.


The only right answer about how you spend your time is the answer you know deep inside. 


When you know who you are, and what’s important to you, you can look at time decisions through this lens.  Knowing that will make it way easier to figure out what you should say “yes” to and what you should say “no” to when you know what your “yes” advantage is. 


I’m off to say “yes” to a run (and “no” to getting ahead on my work!),


- Lisa
Success Coach


PS. If you feel like you never have enough timeI can help. I recently led two groups through an exercise on time management and everyone gained at least four or more hours a week back in their life. (Yes, that’s enough time to take a spa dayread a whole book, nap every afternoon, or start a side-business - every week!). 


As a trained coach, this is an example of the kind of work we can do together. We refine your goalsmake time in your life for the things that are important, and learn to say “no” to the right things. 


In just three months together, you’ll see your time expand and you’ll achieve goals you didn’t think were possible!  I have two last spaces at my current price point of $1500 USD + tax. If one of these spots is for you, reach me here and we'll set up a complimentary Discovery Call before prices increase!


If you’ve been thinking about working with a coach (or even better, working with me!), get in touch today. I will never offer coaching again at this price, ever! On March 31st, 2017, my prices are increasing to $3,000 USD for a coaching package.  Don’t miss out on this opportunity.


If saving $1500 and getting a life-changing coaching experience isn’t a “hell yes”, I don’t know what is!



Crush Your Dreaded To-Do List By Doing This First

I always hated running as a kid. I was consistently the slowest runner in my class.  I just didn’t enjoy it.



All that changed a few years ago when I found an amazing running gang to join.  I had the pleasure of leading a group of incredible running men and women for 3 years in Fort McMurray.



Since then, I’ve done 5 half marathons.  Run many times in weather as cold as -30 degrees.  Celsius.  (In case you’re wondering, yup that’s as cold as it sounds and it hurts.). I’ve run hung-over.  I’ve given up mid-run to stop for frozen yogurt


It’s all been possible because I loved running.



Recently though, I started hating itDreading it.  Scheduling it and just ignoring the reminders that came up on my phone.



I finally started asking myself “why?”  



At first, I asked self-deprecating questions.  Like “why am I bailing on running?”  That didn’t help.  I would answer it with “because I’m lazy.  Or stupid.”  That kind of talk didn’t get me anywhere. Telling myself I’m lazy and stupid?  That’s just not nice.  Or true.



So I asked myself the different “why”.  I asked “why do I want to run”?  And “why is running important to me”?  And through this, I rediscovered my LOVE for running.






It’s such a powerful question




Pair it with WANT and you’ve exponentially grown the power of the question.




Here’s how it worked:




Why do I want to run?


Because I love being outside.


Because it feels so good to move my body.


Because I love getting sweaty.



Why is running important to me?


Because the thrill of a race is one of the most awe-inspiring feelings I’ve ever experienced.


Because there is nothing better than a great running conversation.


Because I want to be active and healthy during my whole, long life.




For the sake of what am I running?


Because each time I do it, I feel incredible afterwards.


Because I want prove to myself that I can do it!




Suddenly, running has become fun again.  I’m looking forward to it.  I am LOVING it again.





So, what's on your dreaded to-do list? What chore can you redefine?  Where can you ask yourself “why is this important”? 


What lame-ass thing do you “have to” do this week? 

What email are you putting off writing?

What presentation are you dreading creating? 

What awkward conversation are you avoiding

What errand are you procrastinating on week after week?   

What exercise commitment are you breaking to yourself?



I ask you:

Why do you want to do it?


For the sake of what are you doing it?


Why is this important to you?



Ask “why”.  Why do you “have to” do it?


Is it because you want the best work environment for your team?

Is it because you want to congratulate a colleague on their new job?  

Is it because you want to showcase the amazing work of your team in front of your superiors? 

Is it because you want nutritional food in your body to give you energy?

Is it because you want a passport to travel to a best friend’s wedding?



Suddenly, you’ll understand why you’re really doing something.  You will connect deeply to the powerful motivation, emotions and dreams you have within.



Charles Duhigg says it beautifully in his brilliant book Smarter, Faster, Better.  In life, “once we start asking why, those small tasks become pieces of a larger constellation of meaningful projects, goals, projects and values.”   You can start to recognize how small chores and tasks are a part of the bigger picture.  These tasks tie to the big emotional “what” in your life.  They prove that you have choices



Knowing the “why” reminds you that you are in control of your life.



Doing any of these small tasks and chores on their own often seem boringRemedialStressful.



Yet it is the every day that matters.  It is the small things that create the joy in your life.  The happiness.  The fulfillment. The satisfaction.  The memories.



You need to connect these to something you deeply want in your life.  Tie them to a DREAM you have.  Attach what you’re doing to what you most desire.



Once you make the “why” connection, everything changes. Doing that task, that chore, becomes a gift.  Ok – maybe that’s a bit of an exaggeration. No amount of connection to my desire for hosting awesome guests makes me think cleaning a toilet is a gift.  But it certainly shifts my mindset.   And it makes what I’m doing a choice. 


It reminds me that I’m in control of my life



And you are in control of your life.



Connecting to your why sparks transformation. Suddenly your “to-do” is meaningful. It becomes an opportunity to create the life you want to live.  It’s proof that living a dream life is possible – because you’re DOING IT!


If you don’t have a good “why” answer, I challenge you to reconsider even doing it.  And in case you are wondering, “because I have to” is NOT a valid response.


If you don’t have a good reason as to “why”, I challenge you to not do that task.


It’s that simple.  It will make the difference. You’ll be living a life that is deliberate.   Living a life that is full of “want to’s”. 



Living a life that is created by YOUR choices! 



That will make you happier.  This will make your “to-do” list seem less overwhelming.  You’ll be more relaxed. You’ll be more grateful.  You’ll be more engaged as you do the things you do during the week because you are CHOOSING to do them.  You know WHY you are doing it (and it feels so good!) 



Ask WHY.  Know why it MATTERS.  Reclaim your power to choose



Create the life YOU want.






PS. On this cloudy Vancouver day, I had to ask myself the “why does this matter” question while writing this too.  Happiness, success, pride – it all takes discipline and it’s a constant journey.   I’m no exception. If you, like me, need to make asking “why you want it” a habit, here’s some suggestions:


·      Create a reminder in your calendar to ask “why does this matter” when you review your to-do list every morning. 

·      Put a sticky note on your computer to remind yourself. 

·      Share this newsletter with a friend or partner and commit to each other to ask each other “why is it important” the next time you’re lacking motivation. 

·      Turn on the “Wannabe” song and crank it when the Spice Girls ask you to “tell me what you want, what you really really want.”  After you’re done dancing around the house, make sure you say (or sing!) what you want, what you really really want.


 You’ll either find the spark you need to just do it or erase it from your list altogether


 Either way, consider that to-do list crushed! 

Zigazig Ah to that!