“No”


Have you tried to get an article published in a magazine and someone said No? Have you tried to start a business but needed some capital and someone said No? Have you tried to get a new job to change your career and someone said No?


In the 1940s, Evelyn Overton wanted to create a better life. She made a killer cheesecake. People loved it. So she decided to try making it into a business.

It turned into a bit of a thing in her basement. But life naturally got a bit more complicated when two kids entered the picture. She retired from the cheesecake business to help raise her children.

But the entrepreneurial bug bit again when her kids moved off to college. Evelyn and her husband Oscar moved to California and started selling their cheesecakes to restaurants and grocery stores.

Meanwhile, their son David realized his dream of a music career wasn’t working out. He moved West to see if he could help Mom and Dad with the business.

But he saw the business just wasn’t growing that well.

Trying to get other restaurants and shops to buy his mom’s cheesecakes was fraught with rejection. Too many gatekeepers saying No. Too many people controlling a distribution system of his Mom’s recipes. Too many people controlling their destiny.


My whole life I’ve bumped into people telling me no. It’s natural. There’s places we want to go and gatekeepers keep us out. It’s not always a bad thing. Sometimes we aren’t ready. But other times, we know we are. We just need a shot.

So we have to start a blog and create our own readership.

We have to self-publish that book.

We have to bootstrap and raise our own funds from customers for that new business.


The Overtons decided they could control distribution better by opening a restaurant to showcase their awesome cheesecakes.

You’ve probably eaten their food. Odds are you like it too. 🙂

In 1978, the Overtons opened up the very first Cheesecake Factory. Today, The Cheesecake Factory has 185 restaurants all over the world. It’s a public company making about 2 billion dollars of revenue each year.


Sometimes instead of waiting for someone else, we just have to do it ourselves.

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You should follow my YouTube channel, where I share more about how history, psychology, and science can help us come up with better ideas and start businesses. And if you need a simple system to track leads and follow-ups you should try Highrise.



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