My first-grade teacher, Mrs. Aarons, called ‘nice’ a goober word. As students, we weren’t allowed to use the word ‘nice’ when answering questions in class or on homework. It’s a nice day, she’s a nice person, I had a nice time. What does ‘nice’ really mean? Are you spending too much time and energy trying to be a ‘nice’ person?
A similar theory shows up in coaching, as the phrase goes, if it’s not a hell yes, it’s a hell no. In other words, don’t say yes to something that is ‘nice.’ If you aren’t jumping for joy, a 10 out of 10, you should say no. This is a powerful litmus test for…everything. Do I want to buy this shirt, do I want to go to lunch with this person, do I want to take a new job?
In an interview with Srini Rao on the Unmistakable Creative, Margo Aaron of thatseemsimportant.com took this idea a step farther, “You want to be a hell yes or a hell no for people. Being likable and in the middle doesn’t get you anywhere.”
Where are you trying to be likable, trying to be ‘nice’? Challenge yourself this week to say hell yes to something that is a 10 out of 10 and a powerful no to something that is only ‘nice.’