"Just say yes, just say there's nothing holding you back
It's not a test, nor a trick of the mind
-- "Just Say Yes," Snow Patrol
What does it really mean to say "yes"? I've been contemplating this question a great deal recently, as life struggles have impeded on my spirit, my sense of optimism and hope and I've found it difficult to venture too far outside of myself. We've seen examples of this sort of "just say yes" philosophy at work in movies and motivational speakers alike. And I think there is some merit to these extreme approaches of trying anything and everything without restraint. New experiences are life blood, of that I am certain. However, I'd like to think there is something even more earth shattering about orienting your fundamental being in the direction of "yes."
This mentality, if you will, is about more than just trying new things -- saying yes and seeing where you end up. It is an opening of your consciousness, a blossoming of honesty that allows you to see every connection, relationship, interaction, as an opportunity of significance -- part of a greater quest for happiness, for bliss. In this way, it's less about saying "yes" to bungee jumping or trying the world's hottest pepper, or even doing something out of your ordinary patterns of comfort. While these undertakings exhilarate, saying "yes" on a deeper level is about opening yourself up to the limitless possibilities life has to offer. Perhaps E.E Cummings said it best when he wrote:
"yes is a world
and in this world of
This world of "yes" is about recognizing that every person, thing, and event has something to offer in the growth of your own humanity, your life. It's allowing for the frightening but liberating prospect that everything can be interpreted as important, beautiful, interesting, or worth considering. Saying "yes" isn't just about uttering the word at randomly uncomfortable intervals, not just about new adventures. Because while both of those things are wonderful opportunities to do alight in the beauty of our world, the "just say yes" way of living is about seeing life through a lens of love, and loving what you see.
I'm not saying that you should pretend that life doesn't bear pain, disaster and disappointment. It's not difficult to look at our daily newsfeeds and see that this strife is undoubtedly present and so often manufactured by people trying to live out the very same existence we are. This can be a hard pill for anyone to swallow. But what if saying "yes" is about shifting your focus away from the circumstances that make life challenging, and instead dwelling in a place where love flourishes? It's doing what you can to make the most of your experience, and ensuring that you are always a positive part of the experience of others.
In the end, this "just say yes" approach is not an easy concept to live out on a day to day basis, more of a continual journey, but it has the potential to open up worlds upon worlds for anyone keen on saying "yes" for the first time, and every time after that.