Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand In the Sun and Be Your Own Person
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We all have come to know head writer and executive producer, Shonda Rhimes, as being the brains behind the operation of #TGIT (Thank God It’s Thursday) for her successful prime time shows on ABC – Greys Anatomy, Scandal and How To Get Away With Murder. As if she was not successful enough, the Shondaland creator has now added, “author” to her resume.
During the summer, I informed you that Rhimes had a book in the works and now that time has come. The book is titled, Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand In the Sun and Be Your Own Person. How many of you got chills after reading that title? Did it touch you in any kind of way?
Check out some excerpts from her interview with NPR.
On how her sister helped “spark” Year of Yes:
My oldest sister said to me, ‘You never say yes to anything.’ And by that she meant I never accept any invitations. I never go anywhere. I never do anything. All I did was go to work and come home. And she was right. My life had gotten really small. Once I sort of realized that she was right, I was going to say yes to all the things that scared me, that made me nervous, that freaked me out, that made me think I’m going to look foolish doing it. Anything that took me out of my comfort zone I was going to do it, if asked to do it.
On saying “yes” to her children
I was kind of a workaholic. I was someone who spent a lot of time working and I was getting really good at it, and I was really enjoying it. I was really enjoying it. And the idea that I was prioritizing work over home was clear and obvious and happening, only I wasn’t seeing it.
And one day my daughter basically said to me, like, “Do you want to play?” And I was on my way out the door and I suddenly realized that I was going to miss so much stuff if I just didn’t stop and actually play with my kids. And I started to prioritize playing with my kids, make it as important as going to work. …
I decided that if they ever asked me if I wanted to play I would say yes. My answer would always be, yes. … They only really ever want to play with you for about 15 minutes at a time. … So it made it very simple because you play with them for a while and then they take off and they’d be thrilled and I would be 10 times more relaxed and happier and go off to the office in a much better place.
On writing female characters who make unorthodox decisions
Part of what’s been great for me in getting to write these characters and getting to have these shows is getting to explore these issues with these women. I really wanted to have characters who were living these lives that we’re all living; trying to do things [in unconventional] ways, because I know that we’re all wanting to or attempting to. And what really happens when you do? …
Saying I don’t want to get married, or I don’t want to have kids are two of the biggest taboos for women to admit in our culture. And it’s fascinating to me how many women I know who don’t want to have kids who sort of keep it under wraps, like it’s their secret. … I have a friend who’s got a theory that if she just waits everybody out, people will start to think she’s infertile and people will think it’s too rude to ask. …
You can read the full article here.
I strongly admire Ms. Rhimes in every way – she is a leader who is not fearful of what others have to say, she is very aware of who she is and what she stands for. She is educated with a high regard for her children first and then her career. As a blog writer, she motivates and challenges me to become a better writer, because there is always room for improvement.
Now, I want to hear from you – what do you think of the message behind the book? Is this relevant in your life? Did you always say “no” and now to a point where you can say, “yes?”
You can order now via Amazon! Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand In the Sun and Be Your Own Person
With this journal, you can incorporate your goals. This can be another motivational source that can help you kick off your year with some fire!
Here’s how Shonda is playing to use her journal:
1/9/17 – This post received an update with new information, which was originally published on November 10, 2015.