How to have a year of ‘YES’

How to have a year of yes

I needed an easy to read, positive book this week. I needed a book that I could read before bed and not feel like I needed to make a million notes. I needed a book that told and a great story and I needed a book that felt like a friend. Before I even read the first page, I was reaching for my pen and ready to start my year of yes.

Do you think you need to say yes more?

This is a really easy read. It feels like you’re watching an episode of Grey’s or Scandal.  But an easy read, doesn’t mean a simple read. In my 30/30 list, number 28 was to ‘yes’ more.  I thought this book would be a good place to start.

When was the last time you did something that scared you? When was the last time you said YES, even though it made your voice shake?

It didn’t take too many chapters of this book for me to realise I’m pretty good at saying yes. In fact, I’m great a saying ‘yes’.  Especially to other people.  What I didn’t really realise when I set out my 30/30 list is that I wanted to say yes more to myself. 

how to have a year of yes


This book is great for a quick, easy to pick up read. I would recommend it for a flight or bedtime reading. Shonda’s style is funny and friendly. You can hear all her characters, through the way she speaks and her thought process. If you love Grey’s Anatomy, you’ll love this book.  If you’ve ever worried about saying yes before, you’ll love this book. If you’ve never challenged yourself to say yes before, start by saying yes to this book.

Quotes I like:

  • “The need for change bulldozed a road down the centre of my mind” – Maya Angelou
  • “It’s not bragging if you can back it up” – Muhammed Ali
  • “Yes should feel like the sun” – Shonda Rhimes 
  • Whatever that spark is that makes each one of us alive and unique…mine had gone. Stolen like the paintings on the wall. Flickering flame responsible for lighting me up from the inside, making me glow, keeping me warm…my candle had been blown out. I was shut down. I was tired. I was afraid. Small. Quiet“. – Shonda Rhimes
  • “Losing yourself does not happen all at once. Losing yourself happens one ‘no’ at a time”. – Shonda Rhimes
  • “No is a complete sentence” – Shonda Rhimes
  • “I know that on the other side of that difficult conversation lies peace” – Shonda Rhimes.
  • “That doesn’t work for me” – Shonda Rhimes.

Thoughts it made me think:

Discovering the Maya Angelou quote on the first page was enough to make reading this book worthwhile. It felt like the words were written for me. It feels like an anthem. My anthem. The road she talks about, I can see it.  It is so full of opportunity and I can’t wait to follow it. How many doors does ‘yes’ open? How many roads does ‘yes’ build?

“The need for change bulldozed a road down the centre of my mind” – Maya Angelou.

I love the idea of saying ‘yes’ more. It’s why it made it to #28 on my list. But I’m in love with the idea of saying ‘no’ even more.  I thought this book would reconfirm the adventure in a ‘yes’, the random, the scary exciting potential of a ‘yes’. But all it’s done is make me want to have a year of ‘no’.

Saying ‘no’ more often, because it means that I’m saying ‘yes’ to myself. ‘Yes’ to what I want and what I need. This year I’m trying to say goodbye to my obligatory ‘yes’. If it doesn’t serve you, don’t say yes. I’m saying ‘no’ so I can say ‘YES’.  Because YES should feel like the sun and every time I’ve said yes to something that didn’t feel like the sun, was a time it took away from me, rather than give me anything.

So, how to have a year of ‘yes’?  Start by saying no.

Buy the book here! *

year of yes

** An affiliate link for the book is in this post.  It just means if you want to buy the book and you buy it through the link, I get a few pennies. There is no additional charge for you and the book will be at the same price. I’ve got pay for my coffee and book addiction somehow.


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