2017 will be my year of yes!
This year you are going to read more… You just HAVE to make time to read more. It is unacceptable if you make the excuse that you don’t have time to read because it should be a priority.
So, this was the conversation I had with myself in December. I hate to admit that it the past few years I have not been reading enough. I knew reading was important, but I thought other things were more important. It is so easy to get immersed in the digital age and think that it is enough to acquire knowledge through social media or what you receive in school.
I said YES to reading at least 2 books of pleasure each month. YES to bettering myself, YES to expanding my knowledge, and YES to becoming a better writer.
What did I say… YES!
So, it was only right to read Year of YES by Shonda Rhimes. As I write this post, I am only 70 pages in, but I begin to pull out the essence of the book.
Our biggest blockade is often ourselves!
We block our own fortunes and hinder our own progress. While saying this, we don’t live in a bubble, so we are affected by our external world. But, I want to point out that we have so much to do with our own success.
Why do we block our own fortunes?
In the podcast, Making Oprah, it was noted that Oprah thinks there are only 2 emotions: love and fear.
We fear that we are not good enough, we are not deserving, we are not ready, we compare ourselves to other, etc the list could go on and on… All these things hide behind words like negativity, disapproval, anxiety, ambiguity, but really they all stem out of fear.
Fear creates negative energy.
Fear makes us nervous and anxious.
We fear the unknown.
We fear disapproval from others.
Fear affects everyone. Even the most successful people in the world suffer from fear and anxiety.
Julie Harris, the founder of Exceptional Women’s Network, said it is a common misconception that successful people are fearless but in actuality that are intimate with fear.
Based off of that I would say successful people are aware of their fear and they embrace it.
Shonda Rhimes, who I think is a genius, was saturated with fear that she committed to a year of saying yes to everything in her book Year of Yes.
Here is what Shonda vowed to do in her Year of Yes:
Yes to everything that takes me out of my 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.
Do you get the gist? Fear makes us uncomfortable. And one thing I’ve noticed, is that as humans, we do not like to be uncomfortable.
Do you squirm or run for cover when you feel uncomfortable? Do you push yourself right until the point where you feel uncomfortable and then you stop?
What makes us uncomfortable?
Ambiguity. Ambiguity gives us anxiety. The moment we enter unknown territory and we have option to jump in full force or run away the other direction; we usually run. We run with all our might and we don’t look back.
Ambiguity scares us. The what if’s and fear start to set in and we talk ourselves into running the opposite direction.
Well guess what?
When you embark on a new journey, chances are you will encounter ambiguity and you will be uncomfortable. You don’t know if this new path you set on will work out… You don’t know if it will pay the bills right away… You don’t know if it will meet the standards of your family or friends… But, what you do know is that it makes you happy.
So do you embrace ambiguity and your passion or do you settle? Let’s see if you settle, you might meet someone else’s standards, you will make decent money, your work is boring but doable, but you’re not fulfilled…
One of my favorite quotes so far is talking about Christina Yang from Grey’s Anatomy. (sigh I miss her!)
“She has learned to not let go of the pieces of herself that she needs in order to be what someone else wants. She’s learned not to compromise. She’s learned not to settle. She’s learned, as difficult as it is, how to be her own sun.”
Don’t you just love that! Be your own SUN!
The first step in embarking on your year of yes is to acknowledge your fears. Be aware of what is holding you back or what you are afraid of. Many times our fears are mental and they hold no tangible value. Take time to write them or speak with another person about them. Also, think of the bigger picture you don’t want to regret where you are in 10 years because you let fear hold you back. Success feels amazing because we are able to overcome obstacles and push past mediocrity.
In 2017, I want us to say YES to everything that is going to better ourselves, our career, our relationships, etc. Say YES to embarking on your dream career. Put down the foundation.
You just need to start with the blueprint, a plan, a vision.
Then actively put it to work. Because plans are great, but they are nothing if they are only talk. You can talk it out, write it out, sing it out, but if you leave it at that, then you are not moving forward.
We get so stuck in the planning stages, that we don’t take action. We fear step 25 so we keep refining step 1.
Well, you won’t get to step 25 if you don’t jump into step 1. Say YES to step 1.
Spoiler Alert: You might not be 100% ready! That’s okay. I think if we always wait until we are completely comfortable and ready, then we will never start.
I will also add that with fear and being uncomfortable comes excuses!
We make excuses to cover up for ourselves, more importantly our ego. I have made the excuse that I don’t have enough time to read because of school readings and assignments, but yet I have time to watch Grey’s Anatomy or scroll through social media. It’s all about priorities.
Excuses are a reflection of a lack of priority.
Students don’t get their homework done because they don’t make time to do their homework. People don’t exercise weekly because it’s not a priority to work out.
On the other hand, sometimes you really don’t have time. Then, that means you have too much on your plate, and you need prioritize what’s important. You can’t fully commit yourself to 100 things while keeping your sanity and health.
I’ve noticed the hard way that our bodies have a way of shutting down when we overwork it. So, say YES to taking care of your body, mind and spirit as you embark on this journey of saying yes to other amazing things in your life.
Let’s make 2017 the year that we do not block our fortunes, but instead we welcome them.
Let’s acknowledge fear, but not let it hold us back.
Let’s repeat to ourselves everyday that we are the sun.
How are you going to conquer your fears this year? How are you going to say YES!?
This post contains affiliate links, Year of Yes, but I only recommend it because it’s awesome!