Lukewarmity: Two Types of Yes’s

The best type of yes is what Derek Sivers calls a ‘HELL YEAH’.

But often we feel as though we have to say yes to things we need to do or feel responsible for doing. Taking the safer job option because the economy sucks. Forgoing starting a band because your parents tell you its smart to get a lawyer degree. (Sidebar: why not do both? call your band ‘Law Degree’). There are thousands of this types of choices we make, or more often fall into without thinking or knowing. We give our best thumbs up 👍 and go through the motions, but all the while, in the back of our heads, we wonder, ‘Is this all that there is for me?’


This my friends is the second type of yes I refer to as the Lukewarm Yes.

A Lukewarm Yes is essential a No disguised up in a mentally exhausting Yes looking sweater.

Lukewarm yes’s can act in both directions of the same equation:

You can give a big hearty lukewarm yes to something you’re not that excited about, because you want the security blanket that it brings.

You can also say yes to something — out of need or lack of complete information — that unintentionally gives your passion the short sharif. By saying yes, you’ve unintentionally said a lukewarm yes to what you really enjoy doing. Even a valiant effort in working on your lukewarm yes, there’s only so much time, energy, attention and money to go around. A lukewarm yes is a half-assed yes.

At the end of the day, all of your Lukewarm yes’s, all of the things you wanted to do but didn’t get to (again) come back to haunt you. Sunday dread. Mystery illnesses and unrestful sleep.

Oblivious lukewarm yes’s are what we need to avoid, but are the easiest to fall into. There is no room for lukewarm yes’s in life. The more you say yes to them, the busier you’ll be, yet the less fulfilled you’ll feel.

All great things come from a ‘HELL YES’. Even the pain and discomfort of a failed HELL YES is better than the soul-sucking, paint drying life of lukewarmity.

Stay BOLD, Keep Pursuing,

— Josh Waggoner

Josh Waggoner