the sweetest Yes


Too often our authentic “yes” has been lost in a landslide of unexpressed “no”. We can do the emotional homework of expressing the anger and resentment through verbalized expressions of “no”. Then it may be possible to find the sweetest “yes” of our lives. Rick Moss

A few days ago, I had a conversation with a dear friend about “No”.  About how all the little ‘no’s’ we ignore cause us to not be able to say the BIG NO when it’s necessary. And, when we don’t trust and voice the BIG NO, the consequences can be huge.

It’s not as if I have never heard this before, but you know how when you hear something again and it just lands? This landed.

I thought about all the times I said ‘yes’ out of habit. Simply habit. Many of these times the truthful response would have been ‘no’, but the ‘no’ didn’t even register, because I was operating out the habitual pattern of saying ‘yes’. And the habit came from wanting to please. Even though I am a grown woman, this habit still operates…sometimes.

Since this conversation, Life has offered up multiple opportunities to practice what I realized. One, in particular, was a fairly big ‘No’. I could feel a small part of my personality worried about saying ‘no’, but once I did say it, I felt compassion, not guilt. I felt peace, not resentment. I felt truth, not pleasing.

I’ve had a vision of something for a while. I say I’m doing it, but then I ‘think’ life just seems to get in the way. Under the surface of those words, which imply powerlessness, is the “landslide of unexpressed ‘no'”. Life doesn’t get in the way. I get in my own way. Life is always pouring in, in wondrous and mysterious ways. It’s not Life’s job to choose for me, it’s my job. It’s not Life’s job to say ‘No’ to those things that don’t serve me or my vision, it’s my job.

How utterly egotistical of the ego!

Maybe what Life offers up is to help me choose for authenticity. Maybe what Life offers up is completely random. Maybe I think too much. Yes, that would be very true.

“You have to participate relentlessly in the manifestation of your own blessings.” Elizabeth Gilbert

And then I see Rick Moss’ quote. It captured my heart, because of the words at the tail end…”the sweetest ‘yes’ of our lives”.

Wow. The sweetest ‘yes’ of our lives. What might be waiting for me within that landslide could be the sweet yes, the honoring of what most matters to this heart, the coming into right relationship with the truth of what is calling me forward. That’s sweetness.

In the no, lies the yes. In the yes, lies the no. In each moment, something is compelling me in a direction. It’s not something I believe in; rather, it’s something I feel. It’s a pull, an urge, a compelling, a longing…

Choosing that is the sweetest yes. Choosing that means I have to be willing, very willing, to say ‘no’…the little no and the BIG NO…and the no in-between. Choosing that means I have to be willing to experience whatever others experience. That could be a range of emotions from complete disinterest to open and engaged, from being displeased, maybe even angry, hostile, to aligned and in agreement.

I can see, in reality, none of that matters. None of these possible reactions matter…except to the ego. In reality, when I simply live that which is compels me, what matters is what life responds with, for in the response is the next pull, the next moment of unfolding, the next most obvious thing calling to me.

Now this might be Life 101 for many of you, but in my experience, the truth comes around again and again and again until I realize it deeply and profoundly. And then it comes around again.

[This post is part 1 of a two-part series on Truth and Authenticity for Dian Reid’s blog challenge, as well as Bindu Wiles #215800 blog challenge.

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11 Replies to “the sweetest Yes”

  1. Yes, yes, yes! That blissful paradox space of the Empowered Yes rather than the blocking energy of (conventional thinking) No. (Somehow I get that you will get what I am saying. ^giggles^

    I love your genuine words regarding Life 101. We sweep and twirl and come back and sing the chorus in different ways, over and over again. I remind myself of Heraclitus and his river… you know, ““You can never step into the same river; for new waters are always flowing on to you.”

    (He must have had a woman in his life, whispering with him during the sunset hours or perhaps at dawn.)

    THANK YOU for your words here, Julie, for engaging us as you do. Don’t you love 21*5*800 and Dian Reid’s Authentic Realities Self Evidence blog challenge? I know I do!

  2. rule #1 of improv: say “yes, and”. so yes, and i think you are exactly right: the lessons keep coming around bonking us, nudging us till we finally recognize, realize, absorb them into our cells and forget there was ever another way.

  3. YES I am right there with you…in the last month or so I hav thought a lot about this subject, as I went through a period of insane busyness that was the result of not saying no. And I realized after I had done some thinking, that is isn’t just about saying no to others, the real problem is that I almost never say no to myself. That was quite a revelation for me, and in many small ways has changed my life. I think we are both heading in the right direction…

  4. Whew! I can’t even imagine what Part II will be — this is so beautiful and really does, as Zan says – fit with the video. I’ll be back to taste this again – and again — wow!

  5. “Under the surface of those words, which imply powerlessness, is the “landslide of unexpressed ‘no’”. Life doesn’t get in the way. I get in my own way.”

    Julie, my sister, I have to remind myself of this so often. Even though this is very much Life 101, isn’t it amazing how often we have to remind ourselves just to get back to the basics and stop making everything so damn complicated. A simple, sweet yes to: a deep breath and allowing whatever is, to be…and every now and then a yes and a no, just to see what will come.

    Beautiful sharing, Julie. Thank you….

  6. Julie
    What a beautiful post to wake up to! This theme is sooo central in my life now – how to say no from a centered place, connected really to MY will, not needing to please not needing to DO everything, to make choices….ahhhh. Thanx for highlighting this – we are all benefiting from your seeking…love Yael
    p.s. here in Israel we have a famous song (alas in Hebrew) from the early 60’s called: “When you say no…what do you mean?)

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