I saw this book in one of the blogs I follow, and the title just caught my eye. I knew I had to read it. Getting into it, I didn’t know much about Shonda Rhimes other than the fact that she has written the series Scandal and How To Get away With Murder. Damn! She is creative.
The book is what she decided to write, and write – in her own words. See her sister challenged her to start saying YES, instead of always being the ‘no’ person. She accepted the challenge and decided to say yes for a year.
The point of trying out saying YES for a whole year was to say yes to things that scared her, that challenged her. So to YES a problem, she had to find whatever it was inside the problem that challenged her or scared her or made her just freak out – and then have to say yes to that thing.
You’ll see the impact saying YES had on so many aspects of her life. New opportunities, new challenges, and her own wants and needs received the attention they needed, allowing her to keep flourishing professionally and personally. And in all honesty, you too can, and should embrace this.
In so many ways, this reminded me of the me that I have grown out of, and in some ways, into. If I had read this book a few years back, I would be in a different place ha! The whole purpose of #ThisIsIt for me was to do that thing that scares me because you only got one life. And if you read my post last week, I talked about how I am embracing this to be a #YearOfYes for me. You’ll see it all – I promise.
Here are a few things I got from the book that made so much sense for me:
Say yes to who you are
So many times we spend our lives trying to follow the same path and live by the same rules – or those that others have lived by. Do we tend to believe that happiness lies in following the same list of rules?
Truth is, happiness comes from living as you need to, as you want to. As your inner voice tells you to. Happiness comes from being who you actually are instead of who you think you are supposed to be.
I think we try to be like other people and perhaps even do what they do. But what if that’s not what you were made for?
Be you. Do you. And don’t apologize or feel less than. You’ll make it in the end.
Say yes to all play and no work
No, like seriously. Take time off to just do the things that make your heart leap with joy. Work will always be there. But your body won’t.
So give yourself permission to shift the focus of what is a priority from what’s good for you over to what makes you feel really good.
Say yes to your body
Shonda realized she was overweight and she had to pay attention to what her body was telling her. For a huge part of last year, I struggled with my small weight gain. I ultimately had to do something about it when my feet started complaining every time I would stand for long.
Truth is, nothing works if you don’t actually decide that you are really and truly ready to do it. So decide, and then do it.
Say yes to no, and to difficult conversations
There’s so much power and liberation that comes with standing your ground. Also, don’t explain the reason for your ‘no.’ At first, it may be difficult, but within no time, you’ll gather enough courage to say it.
Say yes to more year of yes
Start small. Go a month, then six months. Then a year. Within no time, you’ll realize you are doing things very comfortably and are ready for anything that comes your way. It becomes a lifestyle.
Ultimately, saying yes…. Saying yes is courage.
Saying yes is the sun.
Saying yes is life.
So say yes to everything scary.
Yes to everything that takes you out of your comfort zone.
Yes to everything that feels like it might be crazy.
Yes to everything that feels out of character.
Yes to everything that feels goofy.
Yes to everything.
You must do the things you think you cannot do – Eleanor Roosevelt.
See you next week!