Health & Medical Self-Improvement

What Am I Saying "Yes" To?

"I now say yes, yes, yes, yes, yes!" I heard this on an NPR story from an actor who lamented how he'd missed an opportunity by saying "no" to something so now makes a point of saying "yes" "yes" "yes" to things that come his way.
And I could feel my soul doing the hustle dance ("DO the HUSTLE!" - come on, don't pretend you don't KNOW it) along with him saying"YES!!!" And theeeennnnnnnnn the thought came to me...
"Yes, AND...
" I have to be careful with my "yes's".
I can jump ahead with a "yes" out of inspiration and desire but not be realistic about how it will fit into the rest of my life.
I can overbook myself and then pay for it later (often others "pay for it" right along with me).
But here's something different.
I used to overbook myself with things I didn't necessarily want to.
Now I can overbook myself with things I REALLY want to do.
"Progress not perfection" is my mantra these days.
When I was struggling recently with a decision, my friend Katie said "what are you saying 'yes' too"? Boy-o was that an eye opener.
It helped me pay attention to what the "yes" REALLY was and what it wasn't.
These days I'm trying to pay attention or I should say RE-attention (love re-imagining new words) to what I'm saying "yes" to.
In facilitating an Artist's Way class based on the book "The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron, I'm reminded how Julia says "attention is an act of connection.
" Sometimes we're paying attention to another person and we feel connected.
Or we pay attention to a piece of theater and we feel connected to a story or the performer.
Or we're paying attention to the fact we have a pinched neck that we can't move to our shoulder without wanting to scream, a jaw that is sore from clenching our teeth, or obsessing thoughts that run SO rampant such that we are in a trance driving from place to play and can't recall how we made it there (scare-YY!).
The paying attention phenomenon can be a great sense of connection to ourselves.
The paying attention flags (as I like to call them) can be gigantic red flags flashing baseball sized stadium signs of "beware" "beware" "beware" or cheery bright green ones saying "right direction.
" My latest favorite saying was from my friend, Kelly, who said she heard this line: "Red flags are not flagging you home.
" Cracks me up and oh so true.
Now sometimes (oh if only it were "always - sigh) when I'm getting the red flag or green flag sign...
I stop.
I listen.
To what my intuition is telling me..
"Go take the playwriting class.
Really? Okaaaaaaaay.
You were right about the Spoken Word class...
REALLY? Playwriting?" Then I make deals with myself, "Fine, but the only way I'm doing this is to allow myself to write the worst dialogue ever written, ever, ever, EVER!! FINE-uh (in full adolescent harrumph) I'll sign up!!" With this class I'm saying 'yes' to possible failure and successes, to what I can't imagine, to new images and characters, to fellow travelers and to my intuition.
Today, I'm trying to listen more, just a little bit more.
To what my body is telling me...
"You're exhausted, GO take a nap! A nap? What's that?" I listen.
To what my spirit is screaming at me...
"GO put your bum in a chair and write/sing/play the guitar.
In fact, write up a sign with that saying your friend Claire told you "Butt in seat = book.
" Trust me if you just go DO it (I hate it when marketers invade my brain - you know who I'm talkin' to), you'll be less grumpy and your friends/family/friends will THANK you.
" My spirit has a touch of a few stern nuns from my childhood ("Yes, that's YOU, Sister Kathleen with the tissue up your sleeve - what was UP with that anyhow?") Not entirely a bad thing (the sternness not the tissue)..
I listen to blog comments like the one from Joy who read this blog post and said "Most of all, it should light us up inside when we do it!" Sing it, sister.
So what do you need to pay attention/saying "yes" to today? The cool image of birds on a wire as you were walking to work? The fact you need to look for another job? That those shoes have GOT to go? My two cents? Pay attention.

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