Tuesday, November 9, 2010


I have a really, really hard time saying no. I've always had a hard time with it, and it's been especially difficult recently, and when I saw Lindsay Pollack's blog post about trying to do it more in November, I sort of remembered all at once why I feel so stressed lately. Because I just keep saying yes.

It also made me realize that my willingness to take on too much is one of my favorite things about myself. Saying yes is one of the few times when I can be as adventurous as I always want to be. While I sometimes have to rearrange things and fit them in and am sometimes really stressed, saying yes as often as I humanly can has also led to lots of great experiences. Saying yes led to starting Call & Response, and writing tons of articles, and seeing amazing art all over the world, and, once, going to an amazing lecture on rats. It's forced me to meet people I never would have otherwise, to earn responsibilities I couldn't have had without my eagerness to please, and to experience a world that might not be possible if I'd said no.

One of my favorite meet-cute stories is about John Lennon and Yoko Ono. Yoko had a gallery show in London, and her piece Ceiling Painting was on display for the first time. Consisting of a ladder leading up to the word "yes" painted on the ceiling, the piece attracted John, who said "So it was positive. I felt relieved. It's a great relief when you get up the ladder and you look through the spyglass and it doesn't say NO or FUCK YOU or something." I hear you, John.

So, although I certainly appreciate the idea of figuring out your balance, and saying no when you don't want to do something, I'm also big on opening yourself up to new experiences. Please remind me of that next time I'm complaining about how overworked I am!

1 comment:

  1. I am a big yesser as well, which always gets me into scrapes and panic attacks. I hear you.