Hey hey! Can you believe that we are almost through the first month of 2019? I hope you are still sticking to your resolutions if you made them or are working on achieving your goals daily.
One of the tasks on my 2019 goal list was to read more books and I’m starting the year off great because I just finished my first one: “Year of Yes: How to Dance it Out, Stand in the Sun, and Be Your Own Person.” 10/10 rating!
This book is like a rollercoaster you won’t want to stop riding. Every page is full of Shonda Rhimes personal stories, guarenteed to keep you entertained from start to finish. She offers honest and humbling advice from the problems she faced over the years and shows readers how she overcame them.
This book actually came to be because Shonda’s sister Delorse said six words to her “you never say yes to anything.” Those 6 words sparked a fire in Shonda’s soul and made her realize that her sister was absolutely correct. She vowed to say “yes” to everything for a year. “Yes” to every event, “yes” to every interview, “yes” to every guest appearance or photoshoot, literally “yes” to everything that took her out of her comfort zone or scared her.
Throughout the book you see that her “Year of Yes” was extremely challenging. She actually had to say yes to speaking at her alma mater Dartmouth College and she did an amazing job! Her Dartmouth speech is in her book and online as well, I definitely suggest checking it out. She had to say “yes” to spending more time with her kids and not letting work or events become more important than quality time with her babies. She had to say “yes” to a healthier lifestyle in order to reach the weight she wanted to be.
Throughout the book you saw her growth from start to finish. We see her having mini panic attacks and struggle to say “yes” to things, but we also see her overcome these obstacles and that’s what really inspired me. She didn’t give up during her “Year of Yes” and she also realizes that saying “yes” to one thing sometimes means saying “no” to negative things and negative people.
Sometimes when she was feeling sad or stressed out and needed a confident boost, she would strike a Wonder Woman pose to make herself feel powerful and like she can conquer anything she sets out to do. It may seem strange to break out into a random pose, but try it, trust me it works!
In the book, we also see how important it is to surround yourself with good people or your “ride or dies” as Shonda calls them. Those people who will pick you up when you are doing veal practice (Shonda’s term for laying motionless on the couch lol) and who will keep motivating you to continue your “Year of Yes.” You have to surround yourself with people who support you, want the best for you, and will help you reach your goals. She admits that she couldn’t be the amazing and talented woman she is today if it wasn’t for a lot of help from others.
Few of my favorite quotes from the book:
1) “Don’t let what he wants eclipse what you need. He is very dreamy,” she says. “But he is not the sun. You are.” “
2) “I am not lucky. You know what I am? I am smart, I am talented, I take advantage of the opportunities that come my way and I work really, really hard. Don’t call me lucky. Call me a badass.”
3) “You don’t want a baby? Don’t have one. I don’t want to get married? I won’t. You want to live alone? Enjoy it. You want to love someone? Love someone. Don’t apologize. Don’t explain. Don’t ever feel less than.”
4) “Happiness comes from living as you need to, as you want to. As your inner voice tells you to. Happiness comes from being who you actually are instead of who you think you are supposed to be.”
5) “Saying yes . . . saying yes is courage. Saying yes is the sun. Saying yes is life.”
As her “Year of Yes” is coming to a close she realizes that saying “yes” isn’t as hard as she thought it was. Reading about her growth during just one year of saying “yes” and doing things that made her uncomfortable truly made me self reflect and think about areas of my life where I may need to say “yes” more or “no” more to negative people and things.
I had so much fun reading this book because it was like Shonda Rhimes and I were holding a conversation with each other and she was my mentor and role model telling me I can make it, learn from the things she’s been through, and keep moving forward.