Archives For Simple Solutions

Are the 'No's' Your're hearing right now even QUALIFIED to get you down_‘No’ sucks.

In my life, I’ve heard that word way more often than Yes.

The word No is, for me, like stairs are for the Kung Fu Panda: Unpleasant, and there are way too many of them.

Example: During one of my nine sales attempts (each lasting for 2-6 months), I sold credit card processing services. During that 6-month time, I’ve heard the word No over 7000 times, and heard the word Yes… MAYBE five times? This was my second most successful attempt at a sales-type job.

As you can see, the law of numbers has not historically worked out in my favor.

If you’re reading this and thinking: “This is me right now!”, you’ve probably come to one of several conclusions:

First, you must improve your skills at getting to yes.

Second, you must find a way to make NO hurt less than it does now.

There are many ways to do the first one, most of which is education and training. Learning about trust has helped me with some of that, which is why I wrote the Emotionally Bulletproof books. Trust has allowed me to hear more No’s than I could have faced otherwise, and has helped lead to Yes in a few profound ways throughout my life.

For the second part, you must perform some level of mental fortification. You’ve got to build some walls.

The best walls are like the walls of your cells, the tiny wardens protecting your body. They have permeable membranes, so they will let some stuff in while keeping other stuff out.

So how can you develop a wall – a permeable membrane – to keep the No’s from hurting?

Watch these logical gymnastics. They may work for you.

DISCLAIMER: These scenarios are related to business No’s, selling to strangers, where the line between respecting people’s boundaries and being a jerk is thicker and harder to define than romantic relationships. Do not test the boundaries of a romantic relationship using this type of logic. Life experience has taught me that many of these are No’s in that area of life.

But when your livelihood is on the line and you’ve got to make that sale, read on.

Is This ‘No’ Qualified to Hurt You?

I’ve found that most aren’t. So I’m listing some No’s that you should no longer even count as No’s. They are pretenders, and trying to take good paying jobs away from the hard working No’s that belong in this country!

Sorry, wrong rant.

Here are the ones that don’t count anymore:

If the person in front of you does not have the authority to say ‘Yes’, it isn’t technically a No.

If the decision maker was angry, stressed, or tired right before you showed up, it’s not a No.

Can you possibly put them in a better mood? Yes. Skill plays a factor.

Sometimes you can even judge timing to reduce the likelihood of this, and it’s your responsibility to look into that. Sometimes, however, there’s nothing you can do. They wanted to say No to something and you showed up right on time. They probably weren’t even really listening.

If they didn’t understand what you were offering, it’s not a No.

Given, you have to take responsibility for how clearly you communicate; that doesn’t ever change. Still, some people are easily distracted, dumb, late to come to the meeting and early to leave, illiterate, etc. Also, if they say Yes to things they don’t understand, they aren’t your ideal customer anyway.

If you left a voicemail, got lost in a phone tree, or had to leave an email… if you didn’t get a response it’s not a No.

Most people are busy. Some people (Me) are cowards, and don’t want to say No to your face. Make sure the No doesn’t count unless you hear it from them.

If they said Yes to someone else offering the same thing, it’s not a No; it’s a Not Now.

I don’t care if their brother does their photography for them. Maybe their brother will move/quit/get sick/go on vacation/die tomorrow. If they said Yes to somebody, they have a need. It’s just not you that’s fulfilling that need right now.

If they said Yes in the past to someone who burned them, and now they don’t trust others, it’s not a No.

You just need to build trust with them. Decide whether or not it’s worth the time and choose. Bad apples ruin it for everybody, most of all for those who can’t hear No.

If they give an objection, it’s NOT a No.

Objections usually mean they want to talk to you about something. This can be good. If they have many objections and still manage to find a few more, it IS a No.

If they do not have the money to say Yes, it is a No.

If they haven’t graduated middle school, have no job, or are bankrupt, they usually aren’t your ideal customer.

If the decision maker is unavailable due to busy season, family emergency, vacation, etc, it’s not a No.

If they’re going out of business, it’s not a No.

Humor aside, there is a delicate balance between respecting boundaries and knowing when to keep asking questions. It’s a balance I’ve never fully learned, so don’t take me as the source of all wisdom here.

In any situation, it is your responsibility to learn and adjust to the circumstances of life. Respect people’s decisions, and try to know when they’ve truly made a choice one way or another.

BONUS: If the cops are escorting you off of the premises, guess what? You’ve just heard a No.

By ARD (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons  Two weeks back, I was watching Worst-Case Scenario with Bear Grylls. Bear’s last show was basically “I’m gonna eat one disgusting bug”, from every rough patch of the earth.

This time, he turned his focus to more commonplace dangers, and one was: Surviving a dog attack.

Little did I know that 5 days later, I would face this same situation.

I was running a new route that connects to the interstate through a broken-down suburban neighborhood. I had ran the same path once already, and didn’t think anything of it.

Halfway to the interstate, two dogs burst from a trash-ridden driveway, snarling and barking.

One was a Pitbull, and he was the nicer one.

First rule: Don’t run.

I slowed down to a walk, and edged further from the driveway. Perhaps the dogs were territorial, and they wouldn’t follow me.

Wrong. They kept a-coming.

Next: Stay Calm.

Everybody knows animals can smell fear. I don’t know the biological reason for that, but simply knowing made things easier. When you have no other choice, becoming calm is easier than you think.

Bear’s further rules: Look for a collar, put obstacles between yourself and the dogs, and try to find a high place to climb up out of their reach.

The collar one is simple: dogs who are used to receiving commands may listen to you. I told them “Heel, Stop, Go.” they responded with such rebuttals as “Woof. Arf. and Grrrrr.” Not good. They wouldn’t know what ‘heel’ means. I don’t even know what ‘heel’ means.

As for obstacles and high places: I’m not a fast runner, and there wasn’t anything to climb on for a quarter mile. The dogs would bite me before I got there. While I saw sharp pieces of wood, glass bottles, and all manner of post-apocalypse weaponry on my way there, suddenly none of it could be found. These rules weren’t going to help.

One dog lunged at me as I continued to move away. I realized that as this dog was going to bite me if I kept doing what I was doing.

Last rule: Shove something down it’s throat so it can’t bite you, and use your arms to appear larger while protecting your neck and groin.I got big. I got mean. And I started yelling at them. Nothing I said back then will be repeated on this blog, but I gave them threats as if I really was going to die and I had to say something terrifying and memorable.

They circled, stunned but not backing down.Finally I made to rush at them whenever they started advancing on me. As soon as I did that, they’d jump back.

This back and forth continued for about 20 seconds before an SUV drove by, horn blaring. That caused the dogs to back off, and me to get away.

The surprising thing about the whole experience

When I got away, I felt really good. I don’t get a rush from many things, but evading a dog attack is now one of those things. Just don’t catch me running back there for a good buzz. Not gonna happen.

What I learned about all survival situations:

Some survival rules won’t apply to your emergency scenario. Most of Bear’s rules didn’t for me. Despite that, I was calm enough to keep the dogs guessing, and that was what needed to happen.

Not every step is going to go according to plan. Sometimes this can hurt you, but if you took the time to prepare, and stay calm, you can handle it better than if you hadn’t prepared at all.

Liberating Graduation From University - photo by mattosaur4 on

Graduation – if nothing else – closes one chapter and opens another.

It took about five months to finish three semesters’ worth of college.

This is why I haven’t done a lot of blog posts.

As someone who went to State, Private, and Online Accredited Universities, the online option was just as challenging as regular university. The difference? No wasted time whatsoever. And trust me, a lot of time is wasted in a classroom environment.

How can you do 47 credit hours in just five months? It’s easily possible in several steps:

1. 80/20. Most of your results will come from 20% of your activities. If you know how your mind works, you can utilize the tools that work best for you to apply the information.

NOTE: another bonus of the 80/20 principle:  It only takes a bit of time to learn 80% of the material. Then, an equal amount of time to get the next 16% or so. Same again for the last 4%. This is true for any job, learning any language, and knowing how to play the guitar. Knowing when you’ve got most of it allows you to test out of classes. It takes a lot of work, but things get done so much faster.

2. Model effective people.

I found the system that worked best for my unique situation (Online). Then I modeled someone who had a career, AND a family, and managed to get 128 credits done in 6 months!

(NOTE: Much of this comes from the fact that she’s already accomplished in her field, so she may not have to study like the rest of us. Still, the point applies.)

3. Once you know how long it takes to do each type of course, plot out deadlines for each course that are do-able, but still challenge you.

4. Lastly, dedicate an uninterrupted block of time to complete each deliverable that contributes the most to your ability to understand the material that matters. Do this every day.

But what about the Stories?

Yeah, this is a non-writerly post. But I’m putting it up anyway because many people find it intimidating to finish their degree. By any other system that would not let me apply what I already know, it would have taken a year and a half. Now it took 5 months.

Now back to the writing. My second screenplay will be finished by Friday, then it’s back to the Novel. I plan on producing a lot of great stuff in the coming year. Stay tuned.

What does fear do to your decision-making process? It slows it down. Here’s two simple things you can do to get moving again…

Continue Reading...

In part two of my note taking post, I show you how to locate your ideas whenever you need them in less than five minutes.

Continue Reading...

Want to take notes throughout your day, but pen and paper isn’t working? Try this…

Continue Reading...