Yes and Yes wrote recently about how to say…yes. It’s kind of their thing, saying yes to yourself in a way that’s not so much about being selfish as it is about preserving and honoring yourself so you can be happy and productive.
Often we get so caught up taking care of others – kids, spouses, friends, coworkers, committee members – that we forget to sometimes tell them no and tell yourself yes. Again, this isn’t done from a place of selfishness – the goal is not to sequester yourself and do only things that please yourself, and to heck with everyone else. The goal is to pay attention to your needs and the needs of others, then balance them to make sure you benefit as much as they do. “Love your neighbor as you love yourself” is a two-way street.
So don’t be afraid to say no to that extra committment you just can’t take on right now, or to say no to a “friend” who’s become a source of negativity. Likewise, don’t be afraid to say yes to the little voice that’s pleading for just five minutes to sit down with a cup of tea.
Say yes, also, to the things that make you unique. Don’t tell them no because you want to fit in or want someone to like you. Your “yeses” are part of how you’re defined, and if you acknowledge and embrace them, you’re on your way to a more confident and capable you that can say yes to all kinds of great things, both in your life and in others’.
Here are some things I say yes to in order to stay true to and happy with myself:
1. Yes to herbal tea in the evenings and many cups of English Breakfast in the morning.
2. Yes to writing my blog, my way.
3. Yes to making time to read and reading outside my comfort zone.
4. Yes to walks along the river whenever it’s nice.
5. Yes to giving frequent, honest compliments.
6. Yes to TV-less time with Kevin.
7. Yes to surprise dates and gifts.
8. Yes to the jeans-and-t-shirts outfits I feel most confident in – and yes to my geeky graphic tees.
9. Yes to frozen yogurt with a billion toppings.
10. Yes to dedicated writing-time with a pot of tea and no Internet.
11. Yes to shamelessly making bad puns.
12. Yes to being myself around strangers, because they’ll have to meet the real me sooner or later.
13. Yes to colored tights, badass boots, and scarves.
14. Yes to helping out on something without being asked.
15. Yes to trying new things – new foods, new hobbies, new styles, new books, new everything!