NO-gotiations (a.k.a. How Bad Do You Want It?)

NO-gotiations (a.k.a. How Bad Do You Want It?)

NO-gotiationI was listening to a writer’s group podcast the other day and the caller was asking for advice about how to find time to write.

One of the moderators (both of whom are writers) gave some really good suggestions about managing time, carving out time, stealing time, creating a schedule, designating a place, etc.

The other moderator ( Miss Badass Herself Danielle LaPorte) got right to the point:

“How bad do you want it?”

You could feel the air on the call change. Electricity filled air. When Truth is spoken, those who are ready to hear feel it in their bones.

What if everything came down to this single question?

You say you want to:

  • Start a business
  • Quit your job
  • Go for a promotion
  • Write a book
  • Become a speaker
  • Fire a problem employee
  • Chuck it all and travel the world
  • Double your business revenues
  • Join a high-powered mastermind group
  • Go for VC funding
  • Ask the woman (or man) out
  • Go back to school
  • Get a divorce
  • Have a child
  • Go for the gold
  • Have the hard conversation
  • Change something…anything

How bad do you want it?

Every time I teach a class on time management and productivity, inevitably one or two students admit they have something they want to do but feel they don’t have time to time to do it.

They ask me for tips or tricks or ideas or (please, gag me with a spoon) “lifehacks” to get it done.


At some point, once they’ve exhausted themselves telling me why they can’t find the time but assuring me they “want to”…I simply look at them and say, “Then you must just begin.”

There’s no other way.

“But…” they start to protest, “if only I knew the secret…”

The secret is there IS NO SECRET. But…there is one thing though…


I’ll either do this or that.

Yes or no.

Not now, not today, maybe not ever.

In order to do something you badly want to do, it’s time to engage in NO-gotiation.

  • “Hey, can you serve on our committee?”
  • “Will you join our 5 am fitness bootcamp?”
  • “Got a minute?”
  • “Here’s a promotion…with more responsibility.”
  • “Earn six figures with my program.”
  • “Can you take the kids tonight?”
  • Snooze alarm. Snooze alarm. Snooze alarm.
  • Just one more glass of wine.
  • “Will you be my mentor?”
  • “Can we talk about my issue…again?”

A NO-gotiation is you saying NO to something that doesn’t serve you in order to say YES to the thing you say you want badly. No matter what it is. You must create the time, the opportunity, and the energy.

NO is a complete sentence.” ~~ Anne Lamott

All of life is a NO-gotiation. Yes, there will be consequences. Yes, you must live with them.

But if the thing you want badly is something you want badly enough, you must exercise your NO muscle. You must do it moment-by-moment, day-by-day, week-by-week, and year-by-year.

If you do that – not perfectly, mind you, but with practice and dedication – soon you will have the thing you say want.

How bad do you want it?

Go get it, tiger!

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