…we only regret the chances we did not take.

After burning bridges, being a yes man is probably the second most important thing in order to have a positive outlook on life. I used to be a ”no that won’t work” and a ” they will just say no anyway” kind of guy.

I made a choice to not be that guy anymore, a choice that made me into a ”yes man”.

Does this mean I’ll say yes to everything?

Of course n.. Yes!

Well it means that I’ll phrase my answers differently, in a positive way, instead of just saying no, I will always look for the productive angle. If for example people ask something unreasonable of me, I won’t answer with a no, I’ll simply begin accounting for the things that need to happen in order for the request to be met.

It works really well in e-mails. Never answer a potential guest/client with a no, if someone asks if you can make them loose 10kg in a week, introduce them to the criteria they’ll need to live up to in order to reach their goal. Most likely they will scale down a bit. This way instead of saying no, simply help them set a few intermediate goals on the way to loosing 10kg and the task is doable and it is the person’s own decision.

Saying “yes” also works amazing in your training, if someone says ”come on one more rep” never say no, say… thank you and do one more.

It’s even a fantastic exercise to help spark creativity, get your spontaneous instincts for improvisation tuned up. In improvisation theatre they often do these exercises they actually call them ”yes and”. You’re simply not allowed to say no, you have to say ”yes and” to whatever crazy story you get thrown at you, ”yes” you catch the ball, ”and” you come up with more to the story. You can use it to brainstorm the future of your life, your business or simply create a WOD, but be careful, don’t overdo it.

You can also use it to cope with a situation. Some of the problems we encountered, moving to Spain, like unreasonable landlords, real estate agents who tried to cheat us and getting to know the Spanish bureaucracy, can really drive you a bit mad if you let it. The whole culture of mañana is actually quite stressful, at least for Scandinavians, before you get used to it.

By being a ”yes man” by saying ”yes and” you already accept the outside circumstances, the things you can’t control anyway. And you get straight into dealing with the situation. It helped us a lot in our venture of getting familiar with new surroundings and beginning a new business.

It is said that at the end of our lives we only regret the things we didn’t do.

So just do it!

Learn from it and make the most of it.

– Thomas

Thomas Frank is the winner of the IPTA scholarship and certified personal trainer course in Marbella.

This is the second post in a series that Thomas writes ahead of joining the upcoming PT program with IPTA. Read his first blog post here.