I recently listened to the book “The Year of Yes” by Shonda Rhimes, who is the creator of the hit TV shows Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal and How to Get Away with Murder. I don’t listen to many books, but this one was available through the digital library so I grabbed it and I am so happy that I did. Shonda Rhimes herself reads the audio, which is like you are sitting in her living room listening to her tell you these stories. The premise of the book is that despite having three highly successful shows on TV, Shonda was not truly living her life. Outside of work and family (she has 3 daughters), she did little else and avoided any situation that made her introverted self feel uncomfortable. In 2014 she made a commitment that she was going to say Yes to everything she was asked to do. The result of that year changed her life emotionally, physically and in ways she never had imagined.
In one chapter, she talks about saying yes to taking a compliment. Throughout the book there are many stories about her receiving a variety of awards for her writing. At one point, she realizes that in receiving all this praise, her natural reaction is to brush off the compliment, deflecting the praise to the actors or other people on her staff. She talks about how this a cultural norm, that by not taking the full credit for something we believe we are being humble. This message really stuck with me when later this week, I received a very nice compliment from a co-worker. Instead of looking away embarrassed, deflecting the praise to something or someone else, I looked them squarely in the eyes, said thank you and meant it. As Shonda talks about in the book, embracing these compliments and feeling the full appreciation from the person for the work you have done is important. This may seem like a simple little thing, but try it, it’s harder than it sounds.
As parents, we may be feeling like the last thing we need is to say yes to one more thing. Spring is right around the corner and activities seem to be ramping back up again. Before we know it, we’ll be sprinting to the end of the school year. Because of these things, this post may seem like it doesn’t apply to you. You may already feel like you are too busy and that you can’t say yes to one more thing. That may be true. But, you also may need to look at things from a different perspective. Maybe you need to say yes to saying no. Or maybe you should say yes to taking better care of yourself or say yes to doing more things that you enjoy. Everything you do, every minute of the day is the result of you saying yes to something. Are you saying yes to the things you want to do? What is holding you back from saying yes to the things that scare you? What can you say yes to today, that you wouldn’t have said yes to if you hadn’t read this blog post?
Are you having trouble saying yes to asking for help? Having a coach may be the yes you’ve been looking for. I have two spots left in my 90-day workshop and would love for you to fill one of those spots. Message me or comment below and I can fill you in on all the details.
I started writing this blog because I wanted to have deeper conversations beyond "How are you?", "Busy", with other parents. Over the years I've shared personal stories, articles, authors and topics to facilitate conversations with parents about the joys and the challenges of parenting.