Think about how many times in a given week you have to give people a yes or no answer to something. Our initial response is usually based on two thought patterns. One is based on maintaining familiarity and routine. The other is a skewed prioritization system that steers us away from joy and toward stress. How many times have you turned down an offer to go square dancing so you could stay home and get caught up on your work? Never? Oh me neither actually, I said “yes” to square dancing and it was really fun! My point is that when you get those intriguing offers and opportunities try just blurting out “yes!” and let the rest fall into place. You will be pleasantly surprised by the results and well on your way to establishing more beneficial patterns of behavior and choice.
I recently realized my yes’s & no’s were getting a bit out of whack. Most notably I said no to my friend Robyn every time she asked me to walk the dogs for two weeks straight. I had a lot of work to do it seemed logical to pass on the walks. We do that, we say no to the energizing walk which leaves a yes to the energy draining work. Dumb! So naturally I started saying yes to the walks again. I’ll figure it out I thought. Things will get done, it always works out. Well this little experiment in saying yes garnered some interesting insights. Turns out I got more done- yes more! I realized the walks were refreshing my perspective and refueling my energy and that when I came back I was able to do my work more efficiently.
Routine and structure can be comforting but it’s those times when we break away from routine that actually create the spaces in which to live and spur positive evolution and growth. When we experience something new, we simply feel more alive. Saying yes more often, and more spontaneously, can be a great tool for personal growth. Saying yes breaks you from your routine and opens you up to a sense of freedom. Even if it’s just a little thing like accepting an offer to go square dancing on a chilly Thursday, it can lead to more breaking free of routine and living more in the moment. I talk about this in my book, Free Lark (the new attitude of financial freedom) becoming free in one way can lead to freedom in so many other ways! What can you say yes to today? A walk with your neighbor, snugging on the couch with the kids, square dancing?