To really stand for something, you must make difficult decisions, mostly about what you don’t do. We don’t ship products like that, we don’t stand for employees like that (“you’re fired”), we don’t fix problems like that.
— Seth Godin.
This is one of the biggest improvements that startups and busy people can make. By defining what you aren’t, you can specialize and produce great work.
This is especially personal because I used to have a big problem turning down money and work. As one step toward fixing this, I gave up computer-fixing and I’ve been a far better developer since. I’ll also no longer work on an hourly-only basis — I want the possibility of reaping benefits from my work even during the hours, days, and years I’m not actively working on it, so I’ll only do personal projects or jobs in which I have equity.