If you remember back to 2008 to a movie called Yes Man with Jim Carey, you may recall that his character in the movie ultimately changed his life for the better when he simply embraced the simple word–YES. In fact in the movie, simply saying “yes,” allowed him to be able to experience life in a manner that he would never have done in his past.
Now as we watched this movie in the theatre, or on HBO, Netflix, or even a bootleg copy that your friend had in the dorm rooms, the concept of saying “yes” at anything and everything seemed outrageous, but most of all–unrealistic. But the concept behind the movie wasn’t so far off from the actual power of the plot. Where we might have laughed at the crazy antics and predicaments Jim Carey found himself in by letting his Negative Nancy side go, and allowing his life to go with the flow, the fact is, that everything that he said yes to ended up benefitting his life, or someone’s life that he came in contact with.
I admit, I too thought the plot and play-out of the movie was way out of reach and unrealistic, however it wasn’t until late last year that I actually realized the power of saying YES.
Similar to Jim Carey’s character in the movie, I was in a rut and was becoming increasingly more negative, and my thought process was only working from Point-A to Point-B. Today, in our social, economical, and political world it seems that this process and thought pattern is the norm. “How will I get to live life after paying my bills?” “How can I enjoy life, if I’m always working for status quo?” “When is it my turn for a break?”…
That last question I asked out loud often.
I felt down. I felt like I was working way too hard, for far too little. I felt like every time things were looking up, and every time that positive momentum was building, something… anything was there to set me back to the starting line… sometimes even a couple steps behind it.
However, as I went through my journey–becoming a hypnotherapist, I did a lot of self-reflection on what it was that I was doing to attract what I was receiving in my life. I realized that I had this chip on my shoulder, and it was holding me down! I was turning down opportunities immediately as they were offered simply because I didn’t really want to “hang out” with certain people, or I would say “no” to individuals because I didn’t want to give away an hour or two of my already ridiculous schedule. But then one day an opportunity made its way into my life, and it was like a switch had been turned on in my soul.
You see… for years now, I’d been telling my wife that I’m going to find a way to get back into the Westside of Los Angeles, and out of the area we’re in now. It’s safer, the schools are better, it’s closer to family, but more importantly: the beach! A fellow hypnotherapist posted into a group that she was looking for someone to sublet her office, and without hesitation I emailed her, and set up a time for her and I to meet.
Now, this doesn’t sound odd at all to anyone but me, but you have to understand that at the time I didn’t have one–not one single client in my metaphorical rolodex. I was just going to hand over money for the opportunity to have a space in order to create a practice… that I wouldn’t legally be able to create for 4 more months from that point in time. But I put myself out there. And that was the turning point of my life.
We started off in a small office, and I was extremely grateful for the opportunity to have anything at all, let alone an office in a beautiful part of Santa Monica. But not even a month into me being there, we thought we were going to be evicted and I was asked if I wanted to still be a part of this deal we had made. I told my new friend that I was on board for the whole ride wherever it took us…
…and it took us into a much larger office, for the same price of rent.
Around the same time I had been stressing a little bit about finalizing some requirements for receiving the Director’s Award at the Hypnosis Motivation Institute. The director of the school had been pushing me to graduate early and I told him that I wanted to wait, because I wanted him to say my name, with the words “Director’s Award” behind it. A brief conversation was had, and he found out that there were some requirements I had to complete, that he had some insight on. He recommended to me that I look into joining a networking group that his wife had once been a part of, and even told me I could use his name, and I told him I’d look into it.
I did. And I didn’t.
A lot of you know what that means, but instead of getting too deep into that, the director asked me at a later date whether or not I had looked into the group he had mentioned, and instead of blowing him off one last time, I took a different route and I told him I’d make it a priority. It’s not everyday the director of an institution would personally put his name out there for you, and I appreciated that most about the situation, and I wasn’t going to break that building bond.
Because of that, I was on his radar for things that came up, which is a good spot to be in as an up-and-coming professional in this field… and one day he steps out of his office and says, “Do you want to be part of my production crew?”
Like a knee-jerk reaction at the doctors office when he hits that sweet spot with a tiny hammer, I gave the director 14 different reasons why I couldn’t, and then immediately stopped myself, and said, “you know what… Yes. I’ll fit this in, with the other stuff I have going on.” That was the best move I could make.
Do you remember an older family members, maybe an aunt or a grandma, maybe even a pastor, or a teacher saying, “when opportunity knocks, you answer it!”? There are dozens of metaphors, or motivational quotes about doors opening and doors closing… even the bible mentions God opening doors that no man can shut. These doors–these opportunities are what we keep saying “no” to. These doors are the pathways to the unknown, and the missed fortunes. The NO’s we keep continually saying, are our crutch to continue to live the same life that we continue to live and continue to regret and complain about!
Saying YES opens more doors! It creates more pathways! It allows you to experience. Experience what–I don’t know… who knows…? But whatever it is, it’s not what you’re currently doing. Yes is a positive word. It’s motivating. When we celebrate we scream “YES!” The word “Yes” is linked to some of the most magical things, like winning a championship, or even accepting a proposal, or even being “now pronounced man and wife.” The word alone makes us feel good… even when we shouldn’t. Think about when you’re on a diet, and you say “no” to a piece of cheesecake. If you said “Yes” to it, you may feel guilty about it momentarily, but you know… that at that moment in time… you were living your life by saying “YES!”
So start allowing yourself to say “yes” to more situations you would say “no” to. Say “yes” to someone you wouldn’t normally date. Say “yes” to a job opportunity in a different city! Say “yes” to your kid when they want to play outside, but you just need to file a few more papers away. Say “yes” to your significant other when they want to do something out of your comfort zone. But most importantly… SAY “YES” TO YOU–Your hopes. Your dreams. Your aspirations…
Say “yes” to life.