I grew up thinking of others’ happiness and being told to make sure everyone else was comfortable, had enough to eat and was happy. My life was spent thinking of others. I worked hard, pleased bosses (ok, sometimes I pissed them off) and I was very good at pleasing.
Then, as I evolved and learned more about how the Universe works and the basics of “putting your oxygen mask on yourself, first.” This is one of my 11 Lessons to Your Kick Ass Career & Life.
I began to shift to be whole inside before I took care of others. At first it seemed selfish. Drawing boundaries and not taking just anything from others took focus and discipline. I had to break my addiction to craving other people’s praise and recognition. I never got satisfied looking for it anyway. I read hundreds of books, attended seminars, conferences, I broke an arrow on my throat, I walked on fire. All of this to be strong inside.
So, when Shonda Rhimes (creator and writer of TV’s Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal and How to Get Away with Murder) wrote a book on her YEAR OF YES. I said yes!
Shonda let the world walk all over her and focused on work and success to the neglect of her true self. She buried her feelings in food and covered herself in a habit of NO. She said no to everything because she had nothing else to give. She said no to awards, speaking engagements and her world began to shrink. Yes, even this uber successful woman. She is a role model to so many of us, but she shut herself off and shut herself down since she couldn’t breathe. She had not given herself her own oxygen mask. So, she survived in her small world and said no.
Thanksgiving of 2013 changed everything. Her older sister called her out on saying no. She denied it at first (don’t we always). Then, she realized how small her successful world was and she began to say YES!
Shonda Rhimes’ Year of Yes is all of our stories. She came into herself by saying yes. And, she reminds us to be a bad ass, walk like wonder woman, be unapologetic for our smarts and skills and hard work. We need to own our strength. We need to say NO to those who take and drag us down. Say yes to you, live authentically, live in your own bad ass power. Shonda Rhimes, thank you for reminding us to stand in our power and Say YES!