If you were to look at your life through two words, yes and no, which one do you think is more dominant? When you hear the words, can you sense the different energies they convey?
Yes, to me, implies more. I equate it with abundance.
No says stop. I don’t want it.
A person in the dizzy heights of orgasm is unlikely to yell ‘no no no’; and a woman who is birthing her baby has an altogether different experience of it when she says ‘yes’ to her body opening wide, and ‘yes’ to bringing her baby down through her vagina. YES.
Yes and no. Such powerful words. Indeed, they are life changing. Shall we do this? Do you want to try this? Can we go here? These are the direction signs on the road of life. How often do you think life changes are made on major decisions? The truth is, it’s actually the daily ‘yes and no’ choices which tilt our lives in certain ways.
Have you ever had times where someone has asked you to do something, or you’ve felt obligated to follow a course of action that didn’t make your heart sing?
For me, one of the most important lessons I learned in life was that when I say ‘no’ to someone else, I am saying ‘yes’ to me. Of course, this doesn’t mean never helping anyone, but it does mean paying close attention to your heart and recognising your own worth.
I was thinking a lot about yes and no this morning, and how I’ll often say to my husband with glee: this is one of my favourite times of day! The truth is that I have many times in the course of my day that I consider ‘favourites’ for the simple reason that they are an expression of me saying YES.
Yes is about opening up to life. Yes is a positive affirmation. Yes says ‘sure, no problem’. Yes is about certainty. Yes is the ultimate optimistic word.
My yeses in the day look like this:
That moment, when before I’ve even opened my eyes, the sweet sound of birdsong fills my heart and I am awakened to a gorgeous new day. Life awaits me.
The blessed moment when the Sun begins his rise over the Pennines.
When daylight arrives in my garden.
And, on days like today when I awoke to the sound of rain, I said ‘yes’. Rain is beautiful. I associate it with nourishing the land, cleansing the air, and fertility.
Standing in the steaming hot shower, the characters from my novel chatting away in my head, the exquisite scent of lemon myrtle soap invigorates my senses. The shower is my sacred space, a psychic chamber where I am nourished by my deep love of hot water, privacy, and writing time (very little writing actually happens at the laptop!).
Sipping the green smoothie that my husband has made me while I’ve been in the shower is another ‘yes’.
Driving my daughter to school en route to the gym, and us singing out loud together (sure am going to miss that when she leaves for university in three months and three weeks).
Now, here’s the honest truth: the gym is not my natural habitat. I’m no gym babe. Me and my ricotta belly, which does an excellent job of disguising my ab muscles, don’t go anywhere near skin-tight lycra. I can’t stand the smell of the men in the gym, as their sweat reeks of protein shakes and garlic and whatever else…[gag] (a lot of NOs in there, right?), but here’s what motivates me: my big fat YES. When I get on the treadmill, which in itself is boring, I either put on my ‘gym music’ playlist and exist in a world of ‘yes’ music, or I watch the morning breakfast news/magazine style chat show and enjoy various interviews. My feet know what to do, and they just get on with it. I nearly always find myself laughing or learning something new when I’m here. I spend between 10 and 30 minutes on the treadmill (walking quickly, not running) before going on the bike and then doing various weight-resistance exercises. The thing about exercise is that it gives you endorphins. Your body’s cells start to sing. My body says YES!
When I arrive back home, there’s a huge YES waiting for me in the shape of my wonderful husband. Can’t wait to see him! He makes the most gorgeous coffee with decaff, rice milk, coconut oil (to help my metabolism) and a hint of maple syrup. I could just take this coffee to my writing room and get on with work, but I don’t. Paul and I sit down together, either in the lounge room or out in the sunshine, and we drink our cuppa in a leisurely fashion. It is, indeed, one of my favourite times of the day.
By now, a good chunk of the morning has gone, and it’s time for me to work on a book, or write a ceremony or prepare a client’s astrology chart.
I adore my work, and I never come to it thinking: I hate Mondays, or I hate my job, or any other such NOs. My three careers (writer/celebrant/astrologer) are all founded on a beautiful, love-filled, soul-infused YES, and such a deep gratitude to have found my callings in life.
I’m bound to need a pee break. I head downstairs, and find myself lured out into the sunshine. Now, being skilled at listening to my YES, where possible I take my work outside. Any sort of editing, for example, can be done in the garden. I spend a few minutes pottering about outside, absorbing the sunshine, admiring fruit blossoms, marvelling at bumble bees. These stolen yeses nourish me.
There may be washing to hang on the line. This is my favourite household chore.
Work calls to me, and I say YES.
At some point, Paul and I realise it’s time for lunch. One or other of us prepares something nourishing, and on days like today, we’ll eat out in the sunshine. YES YES YES. Indeed, hot sunshine is one of my ultimate YES times.
Lunch isn’t rushed, but savoured and enjoyed. Afterwards, I’ll check on messages from friends and my children, and address any important emails, before continuing with writing for the afternoon.
Another big yes for me is when my daughter comes home from school, and we sit and chat about her day. I love this time, the three of us sharing what’s happened, and laughing. YES.
By now, I’m having to put my chef hat on and think about dinner. Generally, I love cooking (if I’m not rushed, and just coming in the door). Eating a plant-based diet, and cooking meals from scratch, puts me in touch with the food I eat in a meaningful way. YES. And then, together with my family, we sit together and eat. YES.
By late evening, I am still hearing YES. I listen to my weary body, and get ready for sleep. At the moment, there are scented stocks in a vase by my side of the bed. YES! And here, lying in bed, cuddling with my darling, breathing in the scent of his skin, listening to his breath, and chatting about things, is one of my other favourite times of the day. I always look forward to it, and hold it as sacred.
I am greedy for this glorious thing we call life. Following my ‘yes’ satiates that yearning.
And then, as I begin drifting off to sleep, I give thanks. It is a profound and heart-felt thanks for all the yeses in my day. I am raised, and I am lifted to great heights, because I have allowed my heart to follow the road pointing to YES. The sacred yes.