“Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life.”
It’s the most underestimated word in our vocabulary. I would even argue that it is more powerful than love, courage or ambition. That’s because yes is the one word that can open the flood gates of possibility. It keeps us moving, and growing.
After a long day of work, or a stressful week, it is easy to fill my evening hours or a majority of my weekend in a sloth filled coma of reruns and junk food. Breaking that comfort can be a tough thing. But I’ve found that I am more efficiently refueled by doing more, and saying yes.
I’ve learned how exhilarating yes can be. Since turning 25, I’ve tried to incorporate it more into my vocabulary. It could be golfing for the first time, exploring a new side of the city I love, or being spontaneous and booking a trip for myself. It isn’t just my free-time that I’ve tried to be more adventurous with. I’ve taken on some ambitious projects at work that I know will be a challenge, but one that will transform my career.
I’ve even said yes to taking better care of myself by getting back to the gym, scheduling some long overdue doctor’s appointments and even pushing myself to be more assertive at work (yes, that does impact one’s health). I’ve said yes to spending my time doing more of what I love to do, and spending more time with the people who bring out the best in me.
In my mind I always find the reasons to not do something. It is one of my weaknesses. I overthink when quite simply allowing myself to say yes has brought me amazing lessons, memories and possibilities. The only thing ‘no’ does is prevent the possible.
No is safe. Yes is adventurous.
No is solitary. Yes is social.
No is negative. Yes is positive.
No is dull. Yes is vibrant.
No is stagnant. Yes is dynamic.
No is stifling. Yes is growing.
No is weak. Yes is strength.
No is boring. Yes is exhilarating.
No is loaded with what you know. Yes is loaded with what you don’t.
When you have a decision to make, give yes a try. I’ve talked myself down from many a yes, but the times I’ve followed through and given it a try, I haven’t regretted it. After saying yes, I find myself transformed in ways big and small. While I have overused ‘no’ in my vocabulary, I’m on to a new mantra.