Motivation logo

Why I Say YES to Everyone in September?

It was a Game I Played with Myself.

By Z3n Ch4nPublished 3 years ago 6 min read
Image by Gordon Johnson from Pixabay

“Yes! Why not? Sounds good. Let’s do it!” There are so many ways to say YES in English or any language. There are many articles and websites teaching people how to “Say No.” But for me, I need the opposite. I say No more often than saying yes no matter what situation it is.

Always asking WHY?

One day, my girlfriend asked me to give her a number, any number. I replied, “Why?”. I even provided reasons regarding why I need to know why. (It was to understand what kind of number to provide, for example, prime number, a vast number, etc.) Please don’t ask me how she reacted (hahaha).

My problem is not saying yes but asking why first every time someone asks me for a favor. It is like “why” is in my blood. I cannot function at all if I do not know the reason.

Photo by Emily Morter on Unsplash

Why I play this Game

After that, I realized it was a problem, no matter at work or in my relationship. Although I did not say no by default, by asking why back, there was a build-up of negative feelings around the people you know as they initially think you would help them before they ask.

Until one day, I come across this book — The Four Tendencies.

The “Four Tendencies” is an analysis of personality types. The applications of this analysis are diverse, from relationships to work. It is an excellent book for you to ease the interactions with people with different personality types. In the book, four distinct types of personalities toward expectations (inner and outer) which are:

  • Upholders respond readily to both external expectations and internal expectations.
  • Obligers respond readily to outer expectations but struggle to meet inner expectations.
  • Questioners question all expectations; they meet an expectation only if they believe it’s justified. So in effect, they respond only to inner expectations.
  • Rebellers resist all expectations. Outer and inner alike.

By understanding this, I want to overcome my fear of not knowing why. In a month, I would not ask why but agree with the request. I want to know what would happen.

Let’s get back to my Game.

There only one rule in this Game — anything but crimes. Although I called it a game, it is not fun at the beginning. Saying yes to everyone means accepting any request from others. I was anxious about it.

It turned out it was easier than what I expected (so I was scared for nothing). People were sceptical at first, as this time they found asking me was too easy. It was quite enjoyable seeing people’s reactions, mostly are their Basic Reactions (Anger, Fear, Sadness, Joy).

Some Questioners even asked me back why I say yes (Fear). Rebellers found it unacceptable and told me to stop (Anger/ Sadness). Both Upholders and Obligers welcomed my challenge as it made me a better team player (Joy).

I initially thought there were a lot of people helping scenarios. But that isn’t very reassuring, not my case. Later that I found out people are reluctant to ask for help, especially from strangers.

In the Study “(Mis)Understanding Our Influence Over Others: A Review of the Underestimation-of-Compliance Effect”:

Researchers asked people a similar question. Instead, though, participants estimated how many people they’d have to approach before 3 people would agree to lend them their phones. On average, the participants guessed that they’d have to ask about 10 people.

As it turns out, an average of six people to get three people to lend their cell phones, which is much lower than what people think (10), shows that people underestimated the willingness of other people to help them.

In summary, last month, I did something new.

  • Met several new clients
  • Shared table with a stranger in a cafe
  • Talked to a missionary on the way home
  • Did a project which I would pass to my colleagues to finish nowadays
  • Ate breakfast for two days that did not happen for a long time! (I ordinarily eat One Meal a day)
  • Upgraded my coffee so many times (haha)
  • Donated to several NGO
  • Picked up some many junk calls (I did not say no to them but turned down their offers lending me money)

Saying YES to everyone in a day does not make you feel good.

I lost the ability to choose. I forced myself to say yes to things that contradict my gut. But that is what the new information comes in. Those are all little things in our life. You may already be doing that every day, too. What’s important is the changes in my perspectives on those little things.

People are delighted when you say yes to them without thinking. I remembered when staff in a cafe asked me if I would like a cake with my coffee. I said, Yes. But she subconsciously thought my answer would be no, so she kept typing on the cashier and only charged me the coffee.

Photo by Jason Leung on Unsplash

It inspired me how many choices we made in a day were defaulted not by our will but by our history or memory? Making choices out of our memory is like repeating the same routine. We are on autopilot, and it saves our willpower. In my self-reflections review, I found that:

  • I do not accept those meeting requests because the opportunities are not valid — But it is not always right. Last month, the background information can be incorrect and involves wrong perspectives from others. Some cases may need my judgment when visiting in a meeting.
  • I do not eat lunch or breakfast most of the time in the office as I am not hungry, and I am fast. I know the benefits of not eating, and I will keep this habit. However, it should be more flexible, and people would treat me as a special guest as I join them for meals. That is fun.
  • From that point, I am more aware of my choice, whether from my free will or my subconscious trying to protect me. As a perfect Questioner, it is most important to figure out all the explanations about those choices (e.g., donations, coffee upgrade, junk calls).

Saying Yes or No is not the question. The key is to make your choices with your mind. Do not say yes from peer pressures or frustrations. Also, we should not say no because we do not want to take responsibility. Giving up your choice to the subconscious is as equally dangerous as giving up your freedom.


If you want to see how many choices are, in fact, in autopilot instead of your free will, try playing this Game (Maybe your version would be “Saying No for a Month”).

Another funny thing I want to share at the end of the article is the Four Tendencies Personality Test. You can access it below:

Seeing the flip of your mind is a fascinating thing you can experience distinctively and only by yourself. Thank you for reading. I like my idea of saying yes for a month so much. I hope you would like it, too!

Happy Reading and Happy Saying Yes.

self help

About the Creator

Z3n Ch4n

Interested in Infosec & Biohacking. Security Consultant. Love reading and running.

Reader insights

Be the first to share your insights about this piece.

How does it work?

Add your insights


There are no comments for this story

Be the first to respond and start the conversation.

Sign in to comment

    Find us on social media

    Miscellaneous links

    • Explore
    • Contact
    • Privacy Policy
    • Terms of Use
    • Support

    © 2024 Creatd, Inc. All Rights Reserved.