If you don’t know who Shonda Rhimes is, Google this amazing woman ASAP. She is a pioneer for women, racial minorities, and LGBTQ individuals on the small screen. She created Grey’s Anatomy (the first TV show she was even a writer for, and she created it), then Scandal, then produced How To Get Away With Murder (which gives me so much life), and is set to bring 6 new shows to the lineup next year through Shondaland, her production house. Her characters are diverse. Her storylines are brilliant. She is literally amazing.
Shonda recently wrote the book Year of Yes, documenting her own search for happiness through risk-taking and putting herself out there. This read is seriously inspiring. It also serves as a sort of reality-check for anyone who lets fear, intimidation, and the like get the better of them. YUP, sounds appropriate for me.
Shonda (first-naming it here because this book really makes you feel like you know this woman, oh how lucky we are) invites us all to embark on our own Year of Yes. This invitation resonated because I avoid many things out of fear, things that could really benefit me. Her Year of Yes never stopped, becoming a life philosophy, and I hope that I can have a similar experience. And for this first year, I’ll be giving you updates.
Here are the main yeses that I plan to focus on. Remember, anything that intimidates you or scares you but could possibly bring a positive experience or opportunity for growth, these are the things you’re supposed to say yes to. Non-negotiably.
- Yes to taking care of my body: I actually find this really intimidating, finding a way to do it consistently and without invoking past body-issues. This will include yoga, increasing activity, actually taking my vitamins, and trying to stop eating so much poison. I eat a lot of poison, especially because I’ve felt sick so much and “need” the comfort. This year, I hope to be healthier. Not thinner, just with a longer life expectancy.
- Yes to putting mental health first: Too long have I let my meditation fall through the cracks. This yes is to gratitude journals and meditation and aromatherapy and trying whatever I have to to be happier and calmer and braver.
- Yes to putting myself out there: This is such a biggy for me. I get scared. A lot. You might not notice, because I’m so loud, but opportunities for failure make this perfectionist totally break down. So this year I will say yes to karaoke. I will say yes to stand-up (kill me now). To improv. To submitting my writing and applications to everything I can. To talking to powerful strangers, whatever. I’ll have to figure this one out as I go, I’m sure it’ll result in a lot of terror and a lot of experiences that I can’t even predict. But then, that’s kind of the point.
I’m going to say yes and I’m going to panic and hopefully I’ll have the best year of life so far. We’ll just have to wait and see. I’ll keep you updated, of course, and I encourage you all to read this book and join me! It’ll be fun, right? Fear is fun, right?
Right? *Sighs forlornly*
Yeah, it’ll be good.