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I Read “Year of Yes” So You Don’t Have to

Hey, you…

Stop scrolling! 

I’ll trade you one minute of your time for seven takeaways from the book, “Year of Yes.”

You know Shonda Rhymes from her Thursday night primetime domination, with megahits like Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal making ABC executives go up and up and up!

You might not know Shonda used to be a chronic people-pleaser who would rather hide under the covers at home than step into the spotlight.

Year of Yes is all about how she transformed her life by making one simple commitment:

Saying YES to the things that scared her.

Instead of playing it small and declining the invitations, opportunities, and experiences that made her uncomfortable…

Shonda said YES to all of it.

YES to losing over 100 pounds.

YES to playing with her kids more.

YES to inspiring commencement speeches.

And YES to being unapologetically ambitious.

Borrow the 7 most powerful lessons in this book:

1. Fear can be a compass pointing us toward transformation. We are often scared of those things most worth doing. (I traded mid-six figures as a copywriter to write fiction.) 

2. Playing small serves no one. When we diminish our greatness to make others comfortable, everyone loses. (I impacted one industry, and am on my way to impacting another.)

3. “No” is a complete sentence. Saying yes opens doors, but learning to set boundaries and prioritize is equally important. (This is learned behavior for me, but I’m improving all the time.) 

4. You can’t please everyone. Trying to be everything to all people is a recipe for burnout and resentment. Focus on pleasing yourself first. (I stopped trying to please everyone in 3rd grade.)

5. There is power in vulnerability. Sharing our struggles, fears, and imperfections creates genuine connection and inspires others. (My vulnerability is a company meme.)

6. Gratitude is a game-changer. Saying yes to appreciating the good in your life, even amid challenges, shifts your entire perspective. (The more grateful I am, the more gratitude I feel.) 

7. Your story matters. Embracing your unique voice, experiences, and perspective is what makes you compelling and impactful. (That’s why we’re here.) 

You are the author of your own life. 

You have the power to write a new story, one daring YES at a time. 

Or as Shonda puts it so perfectly in the book: 

“I think a lot of people dream. And while they are busy dreaming, the really happy people, the really successful people, the really interesting, powerful, engaged people? Are busy doing.”

Stop waiting for permission, perfection, or the right time.

Start saying YES to your inner Shonda.