I met a pretty cool guy at a ChooseFI LA meetup a few years ago. His name is Joel and he is one of the most upbeat, happy go lucky people I’ve ever met. I’ve gotten to know him better over the last few years and am pretty happy to call him a friend.
He’s so awesome, his is one of the few email subscriptions that have survived countless inbox purges. His daily emails make me smile some days and other days they make me think. I highly recommend signing up for his emails! If you want to see what some of the previous emails look like, you can do so here.
I was inspired by one of his emails from last week. Here’s what I got:
I didn’t deliberately set out to make it a weekend of yes, but I was definitely unconsciously influenced by it.
I work a 9⁄80 schedule now, so it was actually a 3 day weekend of yes for me. A 9⁄80 schedule looks like 8 days of 9 hour days with one 8 hour day. That makes 80 hours in 2 weeks with one day off. I really enjoy having every other Friday off to do errands during business hours and maybe even sleep in a bit.
Thursday night after work I was supposed to meet a friend for drinks in DC. However, traffic was a mess on the way home due to a car accident, so we rescheduled for breakfast Friday morning. Instead of fighting congested traffic, I read a book and hung out with the cat.
Friday started off with a drive into DC for breakfast. My friend was in town for a conference so it was nice we got some time to hang out and catch up on life while we were in the same city. I played some Harry Potter Wizards Unite (HPWU) on my way back home and also grabbed some groceries. The store was a lot emptier at Friday noon than on a Saturday at noon!
A nap followed putting the groceries away, and then I spent the rest of the afternoon reading a book before it was time to get ready for a dinner date. I had a lovely time getting to know him better over pizza. I said yes to him walking me back to my car as it was a fair amount of walking in the dark. I made sure I didn’t waste the walking distance and had the HPWU app open to capture the steps. Old Town Alexandria is a really nice area and I enjoyed the chance to stretch my legs with some good company.
Saturday was where things really got crazy. I had a very rare weekend of absolutely nothing planned. I slept in a bit (it’s kind of difficult to really sleep in when you have a 15 lb cat bothering you for breakfast) and was lazing around reading in bed when I got a text from my friend Stephonee. She had to run to the Udvar-Hazy Air & Space Museum to get something from the gift shop for a friend and would I like to tag along?
So that’s how I found myself wandering around the museum for a few hours on a Saturday morning, checking out all the cool planes and space stuff they have. I love that I live nearby and can make it a casual Saturday morning trip instead of the focus of a huge trip to DC. I also enjoy spending time with Stephonee and her kiddo. Getting to see the planes from the eyes of a toddler always makes things fun, even if the things we did see were extremely brief to keep up with him.
They dropped me off at home and I settled in to read some more (can you sense a theme?) when my HPWU Discord chat starting blowing up. People were making plans to play together nearby and they asked if I wanted to join in.
I ended up playing for about 90 minutes. It’s a good thing I was there, as they were all one type of character and I was another. I felt my presence was really helpful! We battled a lot of bad guys and I gained a few challenge levels which helped me gain more battle skills.
A friend of a friend messaged me before the game time asking me what my plans were for the rest of the day. I said I was free after about 6, so he asked if I wanted to go to Gravelly Point and watch the planes land at Ronald Reagan before biking to dinner in Alexandria and back.
The way it was phrased was very low key but he is a single guy and I’m a single lady, so I figured it was going to be a date even if it wasn’t specified as one. When I got to Gravelly Point and saw finger foods laid out on a picnic blanket, I knew then that it was a date. One that I was happy to be on! We had a great time talking and watching the planes scream past us overhead. If you’ve never been in a spot to watch 747’s fly a few hundred feet over your head, I highly recommend it. It was a really cool experience. Check out the video for someone else’s experience of plane spotting, which was very similar to mine! (warning: VERY LOUD!)
Then we biked a few miles into Alexandria. The bugs were out in full force, so we had a nice round of appetizers from all the bugs that landed in our mouths. (and noses and ears and eyes). We had some tacos from a place he’d been following on Instagram. They were delicious!
We biked back to Gravelly Point and chatted for a bit more before splitting up to go our respective ways. He asked me if I would be interested in hanging out again Sunday if I didn’t have any plans, so my answer was.…..
We made plans to enjoy the last day my apartment pool was open and maybe watch the new Godzilla movies as he hasn’t seen the first one and I haven’t seen the second one.
Sunday was a really lazy day for me. I finished the book I was reading and started another in the morning. My date from Saturday had warned me he might have to end up working during the afternoon, so I wasn’t surprised when he let me know he wouldn’t be able to make it for pool and movie time.
No fear — I didn’t need anyone to go with me to hang out at the pool, so I spent a relaxing hour or so lounging by the pool and soaking up some of the last sun of summer. This time, I used sunscreen and didn’t get burnt. Woo! For most of the time at the pool, there was only me and one other resident there. By the time I left a few families had come down. I’m going to miss the sound of the kids playing in the pool. My apartment looks out over the pool courtyard and I like hearing the sounds of kids playing in the water and having fun.
After the pool, I took a nap and caught up on some chores around the apartment that were a bit neglected. I had no plans, so I lounged around and watched the Godzilla movie with the cat and some popcorn. My date apologized for having to work and asked me out to drinks later in the week, to which I said.….
I am really glad that I said yes to all of the offers over the weekend. I felt safer on the walk back to my car and got to spend more time with my date on Friday night. I got to see my friend Stephonee and see some really cool pieces of aviation and space history, which is definitely inspiring me to go back again for a more in-depth visit. I got to meet new people in the HPWU community and get better at the game. I also got to have an unexpectedly nice date and have some fun while doing ~10 miles on a bike!
I’m going to extend Joel’s challenge to all of you. What adventures might you go on if you say yes?
That same movie changed my life. I realized that almost by design the world tells you “no”, so you should tell yourself: “YES”. This has mindset has open a ton of experiences for me.
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Angela @ Tread Lightly Retire Early says
I tend to say yes way too often, which is why my weekends are usually so full. But I’m rarely sad about that 🙂
Gwen [Fiery Millennials] says
I like having things to do, but I also like having time to myself to recover from the week and prep for the week ahead!
Financially Fit Mom says
Sounds like a fun weekend! I have to say I can be the opposite of this and tend to over-commit myself by saying yes to everything and I sometimes have to remind myself it’s ok to say no and protect some time to myself 🙂 However, I can see a real benefit in being more conscience about things when “no” is my reflex answer and changing some of those to “yes’s” and trading the time for my reflex yes. Perhaps next month since every.single.night. is booked the rest of this month!
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Gwen [Fiery Millennials] says
Just move to a new state! Then you’ll have lots of free time! lol
The book by Danny Wallace (A British Writer) is even better than the movie!
He also wrote a book called Join me about starting his own cult.
Saying yes definitely opens up the world to new possibilities.
It’s refreshing to see an article (even if it was in reference to 5AM Joel’s e‑mail) that talk about the power of saying yes. It’s really often everyone capitalizes on the “no” and how you need to start saying “no” to everything to clear out your life, but perhaps we just need to say “yes” to things once in a while and be present while we are in it?
Look forward to digging into more of your content!
Okay, so tomorrow night I’m going to watch Yes Man. 🙂
I need to get my dates to watch the movie, Yes man. The majority of my dates seem to be prudish when I ask them to come back to my mansion for a drink. A simple Yes would be great.
Gwen [Fiery Millennials] says
10/10 troll reply