Yes.

We all have things we want to change in life. It is why so many individuals decide to make New Year’s resolutions. Sometimes that means that some need to add more adventures in their lives, and others might need to cut back to make room for space in their lives.

Last week I finished reading: “Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand In the Sun and Be Your Own Person” by Shonda Rhimes. At first I did not want to read it. While I watch all of Rhimes television shows, I do not know much about her as a person, and sometimes books that come from the Hollywood bore me. I was happily surprised. Shonda Rhimes is a badass.

She talks you through her experience from no shows to having 3 shows on Thursday night at once and what it is like to be so successful, have a family, and be a black woman in Hollywood. And yet, want to hide from it all. Year of Yes is her year to start saying yes to life, yes to what comes her way, and quit hiding from the world. We could all probably use a bit of “yes” in our life. On discussing the 100 pounds she lost (from saying yes to how she approached food):

“Did I not just say it was never going to be easy? Never going to be quick, would there be anyone left out there who talked about struggling with their weight? Now, I’m betting all of these big-time programs you see advertised and recommended by your doctor work. But only if you decide that YOU are going to do the work to make the programs work. Meaning, nothing works if you don’t actually decide that you are really and truly ready to do it.” Page 157

The key is “decide that you are really and truly ready to do it.” Applicable to so many decisions in life. Making the choice to really be in your marriage, to be the parent you want to be, to give your job your all, to stay fit and healthy. Decide to do it. It is that easy. Yes.

A life full of opportunities, building, and being smart

I want to talk about this. I want to talk about this poignant acceptance speech by Ashton Kutcher flying around the Internet and Facebook. You have probably already seen it. I want to say a few things about his speech. Ashton is twice as old as many of the teens watching the Teen Choice Awards. He is also a midwest boy (Iowa) and went through a lot as a kid with his sick twin brother, his parents divorce, and the trouble he got in as a teenager. He is not just Hollywood fluff. He has lived.

I loved what he told teens in 2013. Teens that might be obsessed with those that have money and power. He did not talk about that. Not about all the glam, money, and fame that he has had in his life, but about working hard. That life does not just come to us, that we have to work for it, show up, grow into our next phase. My favorite part is when he said the sexiest thing is being smart. I hope that those teenagers watching understand what he means. Here are a few excerpts, but be sure to also watch the video below:

Opportunities:

“And I’ve never had a job in my life that I was better than. I was always just lucky to have a job. And every job I had was a stepping stone to my next job, and I never quit my job until I had my next job. And so opportunities look a lot like work.”

Being Sexy:

“The sexiest thing in the entire world is being really smart, and being thoughtful, and being generous. Everything else is crap. I promise you…it’s just crap that people try to sell to you to make you feel like less. So don’t buy it. So be smart, be thoughtful, and be generous.”

Build a life:

“Everything around us that we call life, was made up by people that are no smarter than you. You can build your own life that other people can live in. So build a life, don’t live one.”