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The Powerful Word that Changed Tom Hank’s Career


The Power of One Word

As one of the most recognized and honored actors of all time, Tom Hanks has walked quite the interesting road. But he didn’t hit home runs like Cast Away right off the bat. If you lovingly remember the early days of Tom Hanks – e.g. Money Pit, Turner & Hooch, Joe Versus the Volcano – he didn’t start out his career raking in the Oscar nominations. So what helped him get to his first, second, third, etc. Oscar nominations? One word: no.

“I realized…that I had to start saying a very, very difficult word to people, which was “no.” The odd lesson for that is, I figured out that’s how you end up making the favorable work you do…. Saying yes, then you just work. But saying no means you made the choice of the type of story you wanted to tell and the type of character you want to play.

Justin Bariso, the founder of Insight, writes how finding the power of “no” impacted not only his life, but the life of his family as well.

“When I started my business some years ago, I literally took whatever work I could get my hands on. Living in a foreign country with a family to feed, I had no choice. But as time went on, I established my brand and gained more freedom–especially in deciding which clients and jobs I wanted to focus my efforts on. And let me tell you, there’s no better feeling than having that freedom. But you have to take advantage of it.”

But just saying “no” to everything doesn’t get the job done. It is saying “no” strategically. Take a moment to think about your decisions. How will this choice affect me and my loved ones? How will it impact my bottom line? Will saying yes to this eliminate the opportunity to say yes to something else more important? Does saying yes add value to my time? Evaluate each instance and decide if no is the right way to go.

Want to read more about Justin and Tom’s take on saying no? Read the full article here.

Need more inspiration? Here’s the beloved piano scene from the movie Big with Tom Hanks. Enjoy.

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