There are a lot of life philosophies around, telling you how you should do things. ‘Fuck yes enough’ is another one of those.
Basically, it is about knowing who should get a ‘fuck yes enough’ in a dating context, why that must stop short of an unadulterated fuck yes, and how to properly interpret things like waning enthusiasm. It is also about doing your due diligence on your feelings regarding potential love interests.
But before we go there, a look at what inspired the rule. In 2009, entrepreneur Derek Sivers declined a work opportunity involving a trip to Asia because he wasn’t totally feeling it. In doing so, he made a mantra for the whole world: “If I’m not saying ‘hell yeah!’ to something, then I say no”. The Law of Hell Yeah or No according to Sivers:
When deciding whether to do something, if you feel anything less than ‘Wow! That would be amazing! Absolutely! Hell yeah!!’ — then say ‘no’.
When you say no to most things, you leave room in your life to really throw yourself completely into that rare thing that makes you say ‘HELL YEAH!’
The ideology is perfect for anyone whose position involves managing plentiful demands on their time and attention. In his profanic rewrite of Sivers’ system, author Mark Manson’s Fuck Yes or No took the same value (self-honesty) and applied it specifically to dating. The Law of Fuck Yes or No:
When you want to get involved with someone new, in whatever capacity, they must inspire you to say ‘fuck yes’ in order for you to proceed with them.
I have found it impossible to argue with Manson’s rule. But it is purposefully simplistic, whereas dating isn’t always. The decision to ‘get involved’ with people needs more than enthusiasm. Also, it is natural for enthusiasm to atrophy for reasons that aren’t about the other person.
That’s where fuck yes enough can help. It’ll be the most relevant to you if you’re single and dating, but the central message has a wider application.
Fuck yes enough
Fuck yes enough is the no man’s land between fuck yes and no. It is a temporary place. Any person in fuck yes enough is in transition on route to either indisputable fuck yes, or no. But neither is there yet.
As far as I can tell, fuck yes enough is the highest status you can give anyone new that you meet. It is basically fuck yes, but without the unwavering certainty, which importantly makes it a more forgiving standard. It is the threshold you want anyone you date to meet, and it is the one you’ll need to meet yourself.
So why is this needed as a concept?
Why fuck yes enough is useful
A few reasons why I think fuck yes enough is a useful mental model.
For the same reason fuck yes is needed
Too many people settle for less than fuck yes in their relationships and lives. They settle from the perspective of how they feel, as well as what they expect from others. That happens because of insecurity, lack of self sufficiency, boredom, loneliness, etc. You see it all the time.
As with Mr and Miss Right Now, there is such a thing as ‘fuck yes right now’, and sometimes that’s the rationale for the lower standard. That’s fair enough.Fuck yes enough is a more forgiving standard, although it is still a high standard Click To Tweet
But keeping something going just because of the ego boost, or because there is nothing else in the pipeline, tends to occupy you enough that it is harder for you to encounter the relatively rare fuck yes enoughs. This is the main reason why so called bedwarmers, although otherwise a good idea, should probably be avoided in life.
Because nobody new is ever an automatic yes
Fuck yes status must be earned. It doesn’t matter how grabbable you find a person (well it does matter, but it isn’t everything).
Until you’ve enough time and shared experiences to know whether there is a potential future with them, you should not be thinking about the future. You should be focusing on the present: how you feel when you’re with them, and evaluating your compatibility.
To reality check your expectations
You should feel excitement about the person you date, but that excitement will naturally waver as you get to know them, and find out more stuff about them. Fuck yes enough has the flexibility to withstand the shifting tides of enthusiasm.
To remind you to act swiftly when fuck yes enough has became a no
A lot of people chicken out at the point they realise their fuck yes enough became a no. Don’t be one of those people: you’ll wind up in a mediocre relationship. The fuck yes enough category reminds you that there is still a decision to be made, and to be proactive about making it.
How to spot a fuck yes enough
So how do you know the person you are dating is fuck yes enough? Well, you know when you know. This section just contains a few of my personal observations on the subject.
Firstly, I suggest that you avoid using words like ‘spark’ or ‘chemistry’. Those terms are highly intangible and emotionally immature. Try using descriptors such as ‘mental connection’, ’emotional connection’, ‘exciting conversation’, ‘physical attraction’. That way, your attractions will have a less arbitrary feel to them.
Here are a few things that I suggest are tells that your potential love interest is a fuck yes enough:
Fuck Yes Enough tells:
- You are excited to hear from them – you can’t wait to read their texts.
- You’re turned on by them in some way.
- Conversation flows easily and you don’t run out of things to say.
- You find yourself thinking and/or talking about them when they aren’t there.
Once again, the presence of these elements isn’t enough for you to know whether you want a relationship with them, only that they are a fuck yes enough. You can use the same points to assess for signs that they feel the same.
That is it. There is no ‘it’s complicated’.
Fuck yes enough grey areas
Some things begin differently to how they end. I did not feel particularly inspired by yoga when I first tried it, nor writing. I found both to be quite challenging and annoying. Now they are both among my largest fuck yes’s in life.
It is slightly different with people. Honestly, I think you should feel some sort of pull towards them right away.Be skeptical of your fuck yes's Click To Tweet
However, it is essential to run feelings – especially instant and strong ones – through the bullshit detector. Sometimes our ‘no’s are not about the other person at all: they’re about us, being stretched, and our own fears about our ability to handle something.
As Manson’s article states, the law isn’t telling you to run a mile if you aren’t wildly enthusiastic about every single aspect of someone. Our fuck yes’s tend not to be utterly convicted the whole time (unless we are idolizing or infatuated, which are defense mechanisms not true feelings).Finding fuck yes enough isn't a mission for perfection Click To Tweet
Also and as the name suggests, finding fuck yes enough isn’t a mission for perfection. Ask yourself whether the person you are with, or are dating, inspires you to want to spend more time together, not whether they conform to your perfect happy-ever-after fantasy. That’s not a fuck yes – it’s a life plan.
Some fuck yes’s are misleading, and that will especially be the case if you have some unhealthy relationship patterns. I have found that fuck yes’s are more legitimate when they come from a reasonably healthy and happy version of you. Otherwise, it’s tricky not to mistake fuck yes’s with desires for entertainment or distraction from an unsatisfying life.
The only way to trust the fuck yes’s is for you to grow and develop. The more self-aware you become, the more the fuck yes’s are a reliable source of information.
Being a fuck yes enough
To be the right person’s fuck yes enough, be yourself. Live an awesome life with tons of fuck yes pastimes, hobbies, work and friends. That’s how you’ll regularly find yourself in the coveted fuck yes enough zone.
I believe the biggest thing you can do is take responsibility for your personal growth and development. We all love people who are just down to earth and themselves.
Beyond that, seek to live a life according to your values and passions, because that is going to make you the happiest version of yourself.Accepting yourself and others will make you a highly sought after, fuck yes sort of friend and partner Click To Tweet
Regularly appreciating the good things about yourself will naturally make you more appreciative of others. And being compassionate towards, and accepting of, others will make you a highly sought after, fuck yes of a friend or partner.
Fuck why not?
In recent months – and having been extremely stingy with my time for a year whilst I was working on my book – I have been saying ‘fuck why not’ a bit more often.
Not to anything dodgy, but to ‘hey, want to meet up for some coffee?’ or ‘hey do you want to catch up on skype?’. There is a role for fuck why not in life, especially when you tend to be quite structured and rigid with your time. And yes, that can apply when going on dates too. If you have the time to meet a lot of people, then do it.
Applying a fuck yes enough philosophy to your love life means you’ll only date people you feel enthusiastic about, but equally you’ll not rush into anything.
The fact is, we can’t afford to be too hasty when it comes to feelings of enthusiasm. Fuck yes enough’s take time to ripen into fuck yeses or nos.Become a huge shiny fuck yes enough to everyone and everything you interact with Click To Tweet
Always, always seek first to become a huge shiny fuck yes enough to everyone and everything you interact with. That way you’ll probably always have plenty of options, and having options is a good thing.
Live your own life, and be accepting of others as they try to do the same. Do this and you are bound to create a fuck yes life, full of fuck yes people and experiences.
And that is probably quite enough fucks for now.