It's easy to get overwhelmed by all the possibilities out there. Decisions are hard, and we can't make them for you. We can, however, show you how we make a lot of our decisions.
In this episode, we revisit the framework "Hell Yes or No," give examples of how to apply it in both your life and training, and explain how it can free you up from indecision, inaction, or overwhelm.
Learn how to practice saying "No" so that you are spending time doing what you really want to.
Andy: [00:00:00] Alright alright alright. Welcome to the Gluten-free Macadamia Brownies podcast.
Ryan: [00:00:05] That's right. Nothing better than gluten-free.
Andy: [00:00:09] I mean, gluten-free plus macadamia, that's really hitting the premium buttons.
Ryan: [00:00:14] That's right. It's pretty expensive, but you know, it's worth it. It's totally worth it, man. It's a Hell Yes in my book.
Andy: [00:00:21] For anybody who is gluten sensitive out there, my name is Andy Fossett and I will eat all of your glutens for you. You're welcome.
Ryan: [00:00:31] What are we talking about today Mr. Andy? This is Ryan, by the way, for those of you first time listening. This voice is Ryan's voice.
Andy: [00:00:41] You're going to have nightmares about it.
Ryan: [00:00:43] Yes, noooo.
Hell Yes or No
Andy: [00:00:45] So we've talked on the show a lot about decisions and about how to figure out what's the best thing for you to do, what's the best program, what's the best exercise, what's the best way to approach your nutrition or your other goals.
And we've mentioned a framework before that Ryan and I like a lot called Hell Yes or No. And this is something originally coined by a Derek Sivers former founder of CD Baby, and a few other companies, a really good writer, just a really nice guy. But the idea is that if you're trying to make a decision, like the easiest simplest way is to just if something is not a Hell Yes, just default to saying No.
And it's very simplistic. It's a lot harder than it sounds and a lot simpler than it sounds. I think a lot of things we look at and say, "Well, but what if I'm trying to make a decision between two things that are both mediocre" and Derek's advice would generally be to just say No to both of them.
Because if you can't find one, that isn't a great fit that you're not excited about. Well, that's maybe a sign that you need to be looking harder. So this is something that we've talked about before on the show that we've done a lot of practice of too, but we're going to revisit this idea today with some more examples and a little more advice about what you can do in those grey areas, because this is a time when we're recording this, it's still January 2021.
We're living pandemic life, we're at the beginning of a new year, people are trying to figure out what the Hell is going on. Right. And so this is a time when trying to make the right decisions, I think is something we're all thinking about. So let's get into how this framework works and some of the ways that it is a lot more effective than it sounds at first.
Ryan: [00:02:35] Yeah, this, like Andy just said, this is something that we've used and at least tried to over the course of, I don't even know how many years that we've been doing this, but it really can make your life easier once you get past the point of understanding that No is a good thing.
It can be very difficult to say No, especially if they're kind of person who wants to do this and want to do this and this and this and this, but it actually gives you more freedom when you're able to look at something and truly make that decision of is this really important to me?
And if not, therefore, I'm going to choose something different. And there are cases where it's very easy to say, "Yeah, Hell yeah, this is something I'm very excited about. And this is the reason why, therefore I will do it." But there are some other things where you're just kind of like, "Well, I don't know."
And like Andy said, there's. Usually kind of an underlying reason for that. And it's best to dig deeper into really, really figure out why that is. But you can actually though get a little caught up too caught up in this for example, going to the store and using the Hell Yeah/ No kind of thing to the point where it can be quite exhausting.
What we're really talking about right now, or. gonna be looking at some of the maybe bigger decisions. For example what program to use , what sort of thing do I want to be working on? Should I really be working for that guy? We're not going to be talking about that right now. Cause that's different one but some bigger examples and then you can leave the decision about what brownie you want to eat today up to you.
And the decision for that is just, yes, just eat them all.
Andy: [00:04:15] Right. So, so some real quick Hell Yes or No's. Do I want ice cream? Hell Yes. Every time there's never been a time when I've ever waffled on, do I want ice cream or not? I have no memory of that ever happening. That's always a Hell Yes to me. And so that's very, very simple. Do I want another slice of pizza? Well, now there's one where sometimes the answer is absolutely a Hell Yes. And sometimes you're just like, Hmm. And it's that's when you just say No.
Ryan: [00:04:45] Yeah.
Andy: [00:04:45] The hard part about this, I think is that we have a hard time saying No.
Ryan: [00:04:51] Yes. Yeah.
Andy: [00:04:51] We think it's weak to say No, but what the Hell Yes or No framework is really about is defaulting to No. Defaulting to not taking an action, defaulting to just being okay not doing something and then choosing things based on what feels like you're excited about rather than what you feel like you're supposed to do.
So some more decisions: should I read this book everyone is talking about? Is it something that you think you will enjoy and that you'll get a lot out of and that you like the topic, do you enjoy reading books of that sort? Okay. It could be a Hell Yes. If not, just call it a No, be fine.
Should I watch this new Netflix series, right? Should I start this new workout? Should I change my diet? Any of these questions you can apply this to. And the key point though, is that you have to be okay just saying No. Let No be a default so you don't have to convince yourself not to. If you're not excited about it, just don't do it. Do something else instead.
Ryan: [00:05:56] And we're not saying don't look into things. I think this is also important. And so for example, let's say there's a book, come back to the book example that you gave and someone says, "Oh, I think that everyone in the world should read this book." Okay. Well, great. Okay. Look at it. Do a little research in terms of what is it about, does this actually relate to you?
Maybe you already know the content, so you can just read the cliff notes version of it or something like that. We're looking at something that is really, really going to fit you. It's really going to be good for you and it's worth your time doing. And I think that's a big thing to say here, because the more time that you spend trying to do tons and tons of things, you're not going to be focusing on really the big thing that you're ultimately after.
And so this is where this No in the Hell Yes comes into play in terms of that.
Programming and Training Examples
Ryan: [00:06:46] To give an example. So let's get into some other examples, like a personal example. Like for me right now in my own workouts, if you will, there's any number of things that I could do. Over the years, I've done a lot of different stuff, focused on multiple things at a time.
But right now, especially where we are in the world and where I am in my life, I actually don't want to do a whole lot of different stuff. And right now, for me, there's just one particular thing that I want to focus on. And I just want to spend the majority of my time doing that. And it's pretty easy for me, by the way, the thing that I'm working on right now is a 90 degree pushup. So basically it's like a handstand lower into a dual arm lever and press back up.
Now thing is that I'm able to base the rest of my workouts and things around that. Doesn't mean that I'm not doing other things for the rest of my body. But the Hell Yeah thing that I wanted to focus on with this particular skill, and that actually gives me the freedom.
Don't have to worry about anything else. And this is really, really big for me right now, because there are other things and areas of my life where I want to have that, where I want to focus on that Hell Yeah in that area of my life. And so by knowing exactly "Yes, this is what I'm working on, this is what I'm focusing on. Everything else is going to be a No." It allows me that freedom to be able to focus on just that thing that I want to do and give it the proper amount of time and, if you will, respect needed in order to make sure that you are working on being able to do it.
So this is, again, coming back down to freedom in terms of with me. The freedom, to be able to say No to other things so that I can focus on the stuff that I want to be working on.
Andy: [00:08:26] And this sounds like it might be overly simplistic because Ryan has a specific goal that he's working on right now. So a lot of people say, "Well, what if I don't have a specific goal? What if I'm just trying to be healthier or get in shape?" Or "What if I'm just, what if my training is just based on physical maintenance to keep myself feeling good, in that case how would this apply?"
Ryan: [00:08:48] Yep. And so this is a great question too, because you can actually have a theme. And so the theme and what I mean, this is this is one particular thing that you're after strength, flexibility might be, I don't know, getting six pack abs. I don't know. But the thing is within that, the way that you work on or work towards that goal is to look at the little things within there and make that Hell Yeah or No decision on whether that thing that you're going to be working on is going to help you to that overall goal that you're after.
So for example, if it's strength then saying, "Okay, this particular movement or this particular way of me working out is going to be a Hell Yes, because it's going to help me get towards my goal. It matches my lifestyle, my morals," if you will.
That's also pretty important. And basically gonna help you to simplify things in order to move efficiently towards your goal. The other things like, for example someone who comes to us and said, "I want to get really strong" and we're like, "Great, okay focus on this." And then they say, "But I also want to do X, X, X, X, X."
So, okay, cool. Just focus on the one thing, find the things within there like I said, that are going to help you to be able to work towards that goal. So again, it's looking at big picture and then slowly looking at the key points within that, where you also use that Hell Yes or No to help you simplify things in order to work towards that goal.
Yeah, I rambled there a little bit, but the thing is this is where you first need to figure out exactly what you want. And then it's a matter of reverse engineering, if you will, and using this Hell Yeah or No in order to help you to be able to work towards that.
Can also be one of those things where it's a matter of choosing a coach to help you for that. And so there is an overarching goal that you do have, and there's so many things that you think you might want to do. And as humans, we tend to want to try and do as much as possible.
And this is where a decision where yeah, Hell Yeah. It would make sense to have a coach if that were something that you wanted to work towards, Nutrition or something like that. And that way you don't even have to think about things. You have a coach that tells you exactly what to do, and you just follow the plan and stick with it.
Skills and Goals Examples
Andy: [00:11:04] Cool. So there's a lot of different goals that we hear people having, or a lot of different things that our clients ask us about that they're considering. So let's go through a few and let's practice this as examples. What might be some of the things that would make this a Hell Yes? What are some of the things that would prevent it from being a Hell Yes.
And remember in all of these cases, the default then is No. Let's look first at handstand. We have a lot of material on handstands. People say, "I'm thinking of spending some time trying to work on my handstand."
What would make focusing on handstand as your main goal for a few weeks, what would make that a Hell Yes? What would be some of the indicators that some of the factors that might make that a Hell Yes for someone?
Ryan: [00:11:48] Yeah. The big thing is it's really what do you want out of it? Okay, great. If you want to work on the handstand, great. What is your end goal that you want for that? And, it might sound silly. A lot of people are like, "Well, I just want to be able to hold a handstand."
But what I mean with that is how far along into that handstand journey are you thinking? Do you want to hold a ten second handstand? Do you just want to be able to just get upside down and just have fun? So that can actually help to gauge whether or not there's going to be a Hell Yeah or No because depending on that, you're going to be looking at a different duration, a different amount of time necessary in order to achieve that particular goal.
So really looking at that end point, if you will, even if it is only like a month down the line. Looking and saying, "Okay, where do I want to be with this?" Maybe you don't know, and that's perfectly fine, but by trying to think deeper into this particular topic and question that we're giving you, it is forcing you to get really clear on what you want out of this. And that's going to help you to be able to make a good decision whether or not this is a Hell Yeah or No.
Again, if you're looking to think that you want to have a perfect line in your handstand and get that within a couple months. Well, then it's going to take a lot more effort. A lot of time, sacrificing other things in your life in order to spend that time on working on that in order to get it, compared to, let's say, you just want to feel comfortable getting upside down you know? You might have a banana handstand, which is perfectly fine. But if that's the case, then that can be a very quick Hell Yeah for you. Because you can understand the fact that you only have to spend a little bit of time each day working on that in order to get that particular end goal.
So again, what do you want, and then look at what do you need in order to get there and then really that's it, is that going to be a Hell Yeah for you or not? So with the handstand, that's it. And really, you could look at it like that with pretty much any major skill if you're thinking about it in that way, whether it be planche, one-arm chin up or whatever it is you're after.
Andy: [00:13:51] Cool. So then let's look at some of the things that might prevent it from being a Hell Yes even if it is something that you do eventually want to do. In the case of a handstand, it could be maybe a shoulder or a wrist injury that you just need to heal up.
Ryan: [00:14:05] Yeah.
Andy: [00:14:05] It might be a Hell Yes for you later on. But right now it isn't because you're not physically prepared to do it. If you are significantly overweight and can't support your weight, then right now, a handstand is not going to be a Hell Yes thing for you. You need to wait until you are you able to do that. With some of these other skills, like a one-arm chin up, right?
It might be a Hell Yes for you eventually. But if you aren't able, if you don't have the requisite strengths to work on that, then it's not the thing that you can be really focused on right now. There's other things you need to get to first and those prevent it from being a Hell Yes because you're simply not able to do them and then just have to default to No and work on something else that's more achievable.
Other Factors - Foundation, Logistics, Availability
Andy: [00:14:44] So let's look at another one, another example. There's a lot lately the past few years coming out of all these breathing techniques and courses about these. So what would make that a Hell Yes for someone? What would make it a Hell Yes for someone to think, "I'm going to start Wim Hoff," or "I'm going to start Art of Breathing" or "I'm going to start focusing on Oxygen Advantage Technique."
What would make that a Hell Yes?
Ryan: [00:15:05] Yeah. Hell Yeah. So this is a great question, actually. And so a lot of people see these programs and like, you know, just do this for, I don't know, 10 minutes a day or something like that. And then you can optimize your breathing or whatnot. A good thing to look at is really, how do you breathe right now?
How do you currently breathe right now? And so the Hell Yeah in order to do those courses or not is really, do you have the foundation first in order to begin those courses? Now, a lot of those courses are going to help you to create that foundation. But what I mean is that if you're just looking at trying to optimize something by spending 15-20 minutes a day doing it that, before you can even start to work on that your Hell Yes or No decision should be ,"Where am I right now in my life? Do I actually have the necessary skills, the foundation to begin that program?"
And this is extremely important because if you actually don't and you don't know where you're at, then even though you feel that that might be a Hell Yes to do that course, you could start that course, realize that you're having a lot of trouble with it, and then even though you were excited in the first week or so of doing it, after the first couple of weeks, you realize that this is a lot harder than you really thought. It's not matching with where you thought you were, therefore you end up quitting.
And again, coming back and saying, all right, that looks very nice. It looks like something that you really want to do. Do you have that foundation? Are you ready to even begin doing it yet? Actually comes back to what you were talking about earlier in terms of the handstand. Yes. You might be excited to get upside down. Do you have the proper range of motion in your shoulders, in your wrists?
Is your wrist injury healed up enough for you to even begin starting to work on those handstands stuff? Yeah. If not, cool. That's your decision and that's great because that is a Hell Yes in the sense that you now know what your Hell Yeah should be and that is to work on that foundation in order to help you to be able to get to the point where you can eventually start those programs, working on the handstand or whatever it is.
Andy: [00:17:09] Cool. Yeah. And so this is an important thing is, people look at some of our programs and they might think that Hell Yes, I want to be able to do that. But then there, you know, nothing against 70 or 80 year olds, but we have a lot of questions from people that are on the older end of the spectrum that. They don't know how the internet works and they need it on a DVD that we don't offer that.
Ryan: [00:17:32] Yeah, that's a great example. Yeah, yeah.
Andy: [00:17:36] If you don't think that you can learn from the format in which the program is presented, it is not a Hell Yes. If you don't have the time, if you don't have whatever, it's not a Hell Yes, that's fine. Should just default to No.
Ryan: [00:17:48] Yeah.
Andy: [00:17:48] Let's look at a couple other ones. Peloton.
Ryan: [00:17:51] Yeah.
Andy: [00:17:51] Is that a Hell Yes?
Ryan: [00:17:53] Yeah.
Andy: [00:17:53] It's interesting, because I know 20-something people that have them that love them.
Ryan: [00:17:58] Yeah. Yeah
Andy: [00:17:59] I am not personally buying one.
Ryan: [00:18:02] No me either. Yeah.
Andy: [00:18:03] For me, the thing that makes it a No is that it's cycling. And there's also a treadmill version, which is running, which is even worse than cycling. If there's two things in the world that I just absolutely despise, it's cycling and running. So it is a dead No for me, but I think a lot of people might look at this and think, "Oh, actually, people are loving it. It looks pretty cool. Should I get one?" So what would make it a Hell Yes?
Ryan: [00:18:30] Yeah. If this is something that in, let's say for example, a big boom right now with it. Thanks to, because of COVID, people being stuck in their homes, not able to get out, go to the gym, do that sort of thing. We have friends that ordered it specifically for that reason because they couldn't get out.
They wanted something where they know that if they just follow that particular program, if they had something where they actually could get on or walk on , it would move them closer towards just simply moving their body. And so this is a big thing for a lot of us out there where some of us have the ability to push ourself without having someone there pushing us.
But the majority of us don't and so a Hell Yes, could be yes, this is going to make it easier for me to be able to either stay in shape, get in shape, or just simply enjoy being cooped up in my home right now because I can't go outdoors. So that could definitely be a Hell Yes for other people. For me, it's a definite No.
The reason why is I would much rather be outdoors walking around doing other things instead of being stuck in one single position. That's me again, very easy decision for me, but for some people it's definitely gonna be a Hell Yeah.
Another example, to be honest, and this kind of popped out to me because we get questions about martial art. What is the best martial art that I should be doing? And the thing with me is it's not about the martial art, it's about the instructor.
And so for example, it might be where you say that you want to do TaeKwonDo and I'm like, sweet, cool. And you go to a TaeKwonDo and you're so excited about doing TaeKwonDo and learning how to do these kicks and the movements that have in TaeKwonDo and you go to this TaeKwonDo place and you just don't gel with the instructor and there's just something there and it's just not working out well then that could be your No, for you.
It doesn't mean that you should stop looking for another TaeKwonDo place. But let's say though, that by chance a friend of yours, I say, listen, I know you went to TaeKwonDo thing, but you really should check out this other instructor. He's doing Hapkido. Okay. Yeah. A little bit different than TaeKwonDo, but you go and this instructor is just amazing.
Makes you feel at home and you really like the vibe of that particular place. Then that could actually change. And so your Hell Yes then becomes a yes. For me now, the reason for doing it has changed slightly. It wasn't just about doing the kicks and doing TaeKwonDo. It was about you realize finding a community and finding a place that supports you and accepts you and is going to actually help you to become better in this case at Hapkido.
So this is also something where this reframe, if you will, can change depending on how deep you go and you really, really take a look at why you want to do something. And I think that's why it's very, very important. And the more that you can do that, then it's going to be a little bit easier for you to figure out if this is going to be a Hell Yeah or No for you.
Andy: [00:21:34] Yeah. And I think that really sums up like the crux of what makes Hell Yes or No a useful framework is because it gives you a default to No. It gives you a great reason to look for a chance to say No to opportunities.
Face it. The problem with deciding isn't that you don't know what you want. The problem isn't that you don't know what you need. The problem is that there's too many damn things that seem like reasonable options. There's too many things that are good enough. There's too many things that will actually be good for you.
There are too many damn excellent restaurants in Tokyo. It's really hard for me to decide where to eat sometimes. So you have to have a strong No default to really figure out what defines a Hell Yes for you. And once you have that, it frees up a lot of the maybes. It frees up a lot of your ability to choose by reducing, removing those maybes and forcing you to focus on the things that are absolutely best fit for you right now.
And if you can do this, if you can practice this. Practice it with simple decisions so that when you come to difficult decisions it's a lot easier to say No. Building your ability to say No is key to making this work for you.
Ryan: [00:22:55] Yeah, that's really good. Yeah. Yeah. Good stuff, man. Nothing too much to add to that. Again, decisions, super tough. And we're just trying to help to make those a bit easier. And this framework, Hell Yeah/ No can be very helpful.
And like anything, like Andy said, start small. Really practice doing this. Don't just jump into it and make some big, huge life decision because Andy and Ryan say you should use this. We can't be held responsible for it. But yeah, the more though that you work with this.
Andy: [00:23:26] If you need to decide to get married or not. And if it's not a Hell Yes, you should probably just not go there.
Ryan: [00:23:30] That's yeah, that's a big one right there, but.
Andy: [00:23:34] All right. Well thank you for listening and yeah.
Ryan: [00:23:38] Have a good day.
Andy: [00:23:39] Cheers.