Fortunately Derek Sivers stepped in and saved me.

(Well, not literally.)

A very nice lady had asked me to speak at a local business function. I was flattered and it sounded like fun... but I already have plenty to do, and the audience, while large, isn't in the market for a ghostwriter.

So I was on the fence until I remembered Derek's credo: "No more yes. It's either HELL YEAH! or no."

Since agreeing to speak would have fallen solidly into the, "Oh, okay, I guess so..." category, I turned down the opportunity.

And I was immediately glad I did.

The key to using the Hell Yeah! approach in business and in your personal life is to focus on the only person that really matters when you make a big decision:


Sure, seeking input is natural. Most of us are trained to actively solicit opinions, bounce ideas off others, and run ideas up proverbial flagpoles in order to harness the incredible power of a group and make awesomely wonderful decisions.

The problem is the main power wielded by group thinking is the power of the middle ground. Groups grind away the edges and the sharp corners. After all of the input and feedback and devil's advocacy what remains is safe, secure...

...and similar.

If you want to be different and achieve "different," the only person that matters is you. Group decisions give you an out. Other people can be least partly responsible. Other people can be wrong.

When you make the decision it's all on you: Your vision, your passion, your motivation, your sense of responsibility. You will try harder, if only to prove others wrong.

You will persevere, if only to prove yourself right.

And that's especially true when you start out thinking, "Hell yeah!"

Say you're trying to choose a location for a business. It's easy to decide six or eight "OKs" equals "awesome!" It's easy to check off mental boxes: "Parking, OK; traffic volume, OK; storage space, OK..." and decide an average location with no real negatives--but also with no outstanding features or qualities--is a great location for your business.

But, of course, it's not. An absence of negatives never equals a superlative. Look for excellent, not acceptable.

Never settle for "good enough."

Make as many decisions as you can based on the Hell yeah! principle and you'll be a lot more successful... and a lot happier.