The One Conversation that Led to YEARS of Overcommitment

I got sucked into busyness during my junior year by defaulting to YES and defending my NO. Before the school year started, I had a full course load, a new job, and an on-campus leadership position. I was also training for my first mountain bike race.


That’s when Amy, a friend of mine, invited me to interview for another volunteer organization. I should have thanked her and simply said “no.” Instead, I offered a reason.


I said, “I don’t think the role suits me.”


My excuse gave her the opportunity to counter with, “You’ll never know until you try.”


I came up with another reason. “I have a lot to do this semester.”


She had an answer for that, too. “This position won’t require that much time, just one or two hours every week.”


“I don’t think I have the skills you’re looking for,” I argued.


“Just come to the interview, and let us determine if you have the skills.”


I relented and signed up for an interview. Afterward, the team invited me to join the organization.


My mind responded, “I’m not interested.” But my mouth said, “I don’t think I have the time.”


“Just try it out and see if you can find the time,” she said.


I had run out of arguments.


That’s the moment that I became busy. I defaulted to yes. I defended my no. As a result, Amy easily overcame my no.


Change your habit. Learn to default to no and defend your yes. 


One of the best ways to defend your “yes” is to SUBTRACT a commitment every time you add one.


It takes both addition and subtraction to multiply your accomplishments.

If you’d like to get back 5-10 hours every week, take the 5 Day Challenge. You’ll gain at least 250 hours of EXTRA TIME in the next year.