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A Tree Saved and How to Decide (Hell Yeah! or Why Not?)

Berkeley Rose Garden Tree, ink & watercolor, 7x5"
Berkeley Rose Garden Tree, ink & watercolor, 7x5"

Trying to sketch while recovering from a migraine and dopey from medication doesn’t always work out well. While everyone else in my plein air group painted the Berkeley Rose Garden on a sunny Saturday morning, I sat on a nearby bench and focused on drawing one tree.

I liked how it looked until I added watercolor, which I thought ruined the effect. So I stupidly added more watercolor. And more. And a bunch of lines. And then I went home and took a nap. Today I washed off as much of the paint as I could, trying to get back to the original line drawing. Then I added some muted blue and grey washes and now I like it again. Tree saved! It was actually a sunny day, just not in my head.

And now for some interesting tidbits on making choices:

Hell Yeah!
On Derek Silver’s blog he explains that as a perpetually over-committed person, if he’s not enthusiastically saying “HELL YEAH!” about something, then he’s saying “NO.”

When deciding whether to commit to something, if I feel anything less than, “Wow! That would be amazing! Absolutely! Hell yeah!” – then my answer is no.

Why the Hell Not?
Sid Salvera counters “Hell Yeah!” with the flip side on his post: Why the Hell Not? He asks:

Does this philosophy lead us to pass up opportunities we really should be saying “yes” to?

The most important thing I’ve learned about making choices is that if the word “SHOULD” appears in my decision-making thoughts (I should do that…) I need to swap it with “want to” or “don’t want to.”

Do you find it easy to make decisions? Do you get stuck in the “shoulds,” or say yes to things you don’t really want to do?

6 replies on “A Tree Saved and How to Decide (Hell Yeah! or Why Not?)”

Yea for the tree saved! And is a beautiful tree!

Decisions. I like to try things — if they are art questions, I am up for a trial-run and depending upon the results I continue or choose something else. For other situations, I am glad to be learning about your insight regarding the word “should”! Examining one’s feelings about the more direct words “yes” or “no” is probably much wiser, yes. As to missed opportunities, there are times and places. Sometimes an idea is good, but not right for the moment. I tend to see opportunities as things that come back when the time is right.

As for “have tos” — cause I have a bunch of those — various tasks that I’d rather not have to do, but must anyway. Whenever possible I arrange the circumstances to bring some enjoyment into the task that is otherwise a duty because I find that I’m better at getting things done if I’m happy. When it’s time to pay the bills, I make a cup of tea or coffee, spread the paperwork over the table in the most cheerful light I can arrange and settle down to enjoy adding, subtracting, balancing and saying “goodbye” to the money!


What a perfect response. Try it, see if you like it! Of course! And yes, there are those have to’s. I like to make little rewards for getting them done too. Or for making them more pleasant. Like I listen to a good podcast on my iphone with headphones while I vacuum, for example.


Sorry I haven’t been by and you’ve been suffering from migraines. I think the tree works, so good save (or maybe it wasn’t so bad originally.

I like the lemons in your latest post, it’s a fabulous still life.


Thank you so much Sue. I was feeling a bit insecure about those lemons–forced myself to stop instead of fussing with them forever but being a perfectionist that’s hard! From a visit to your blog it sounds like you’ve been busy, successful, and having some awful pain of your own. I hope you’re feeling better. Jana


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