In episode 24 of “Yates in Your Face,” Greg Yates asks YOU, the leader, to take a closer look at what it means to constantly say “yes” to invites, meetings, and events that distract you from the MOST important priorities in your life.

As a leader, time isn’t just money, it’s the MOST important tool you have that can build-up the things that you hold most dear: your faith, your family, your mission, and your team.

Often, we say yes out of urgency and obligation. We become stuck in the mindset that it’s easier to just say yes, get through it, and check it off the list of “things to get done”.

But, what would happen if you stopped saying yes, with out any consideration, and started evaluating if it meets this criteria: is it essential to the mission? Does this add value to my relationships?

Every “yes” comes with a “no”. Every time you enter into an agreement, personally and in business, to dole out your time, you’re saying both yes to an opportunity and no to other ways you could be applying your time.

Quit saying yes to things that suck the time out of your day and leave you with LESS instead of MORE.

Because the hard truth is TIME is limited. And, that means that sometimes you have to just say NO.


Somewhere, along the line, we learned it was easier to just say YES and get it over with.

I’ve learned that if my wife hesitates more than a second before she says YES, she really means no. She is so clever that way. But, what if every time you said yes, you had to immediately say NO to something else. You know, match up the choices you’re making and decide right then what you’re going to trade. What if you had a salary cap like the NFL? Ooo…if I say yes to this, it’s going to cost me two draft picks.

Isn’t that the type of commitment we’re REALLY making anyway? Just because we postpone it or let it roll like a runaway freight train, sooner or later the decision will be made. Something else will be given up but it’s usually easier to let it happen BY DEFAULT. I don’t want to tell you no, so maybe I’ll show up. But, I certainly won’t be prepared and I will resent it the entire time I’m there.

Saying yes to something means saying NO to something else. So what is driving your “yes”?

Sometimes, it’s urgency; cause the most important things in your life aren’t generally urgent. Don’t you wish it would seem urgent to spend time with your family, or even with God? Oh there’ll always be time for that later, right?
Seeking approval? Duty? Guilt? Those are the greatest time saboteurs of all time. So you did everything that was expected of you.

Let me tell you what happens when you’re out of that loop and can’t PERFORM any longer. You’re irrelevant. Someone else is the new performer and guess what? You didn’t care about those things anyway!

Here’s where I want to be relevant to: my family, my faith. I want to stand before God and be relevant in the Kingdom. I want to become the person I was created to be, not what I was expected to be!

You can’t afford to miss this. If it’s not essential to your chosen mission, the definition of success you’ve developed with God, your family, and your team. SAY NO.

So many people get this wrong. It’s not about being less dedicated to your job or feeling guilty about going beyond the call. It’s not a war between work and home. It’s not even about BALANCE! THERE IS NO BALANCE.

Define success in such a way that the important things are INCLUDED. They won’t always seem urgent. It has to be refined and clear. Everything we are talking about FITS. It all fits in your life. But some things don’t. And they gotta go.
The time stealers and purpose eaters have to GO. You have to just say no.

About Greg

Greg Yates has been a Chicago area businessman for over 30 years. He’s the author of the book, "Broken - How Being Broken Unlocked The Greatest Success of My Life". He has simultaneously owned 14 different businesses in a variety of industries; including real estate, manufacturing, payroll, and technology. Greg has also been an investor and a board member. He attended Olivet Nazarene University. He has a passion for flying. He’s had a pilot’s license for over 30 years and owned a variety of airplanes. Greg and his wife Vicki have been married over 37 years. They have a son, a daughter and seven grandchildren.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This