Saying Yes

Recently I watched “Yes Man” and thought about my life.  In the movie, Jim Carrey says no to everything and he’s miserable.  He attends a motivational speaker’s seminar where he is somewhat brainwashed into saying yes to every question.  Suddenly, his life turns around.

I am a no person.  I say no to almost everything.  I work and I go home.  There are a hundred reasons why I can’t go out (I don’t like the bar scene), go to a movie (I have to drive to Cody), go to dinner (I don’t have any money), attend a festival (I have to work), or travel (I have to take care of the dogs).  There are a billion reasons why I have work related friends, but no close personal friends (my house is a mess, I have to work, I need to mow the lawn, I’m tired, the dogs won’t like you).  All of my negative responses are well justified.

I am happy, don’t get me wrong, but what would happen if I said yes to a few things?  Would my life change for the better or would it get more complicated?  Am I stuck in a rut or am I comfortable with my seemingly dull existence?  Would there be joy in my life or would I be pulled in too many directions? 

The moral of the movie was that you have to learn a balance.  You can’t say no to everything, but you can’t say yes to everything either.  There has to be some logic and common sense to your affirmative answers. 

It is easier and safer to say no.  When my kids were young and wanted to do something, I would ask myself, “What will it hurt?”  if the answer was “nothing”, I approved.  If the answer was, “Well, that will be a quick trip to the ER, ” I said no.  Maybe that should be my guide:  If I might end up in jail or the ER, the answer is no.  Everything else is a thumbs up.

How do the nos and yeses add up in your life?  Do you have a balance or are you lop-sided?

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17 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. thelifeofjamie
    Sep 10, 2010 @ 13:35:43

    LOPSIDED!!! Can I go to the gym? Yes honey, Can I go to the football game? yes honey. Can I go drink beers with the boys? yes dear. Can you make dinner? yes dear. Can I go get my nails done? uh, how long are you going to be gone?

    HAHAHA! That’s called “Married with Children”.

    Reply

  2. Molly Malone
    Sep 10, 2010 @ 14:04:28

    Hmmmm… I’m mostly a yes person, but I do have my days where I want to say “Bum” to the world and just hide out in the house 🙂

    I’m afraid I spend too many days in the house.

    Reply

  3. Heif
    Sep 10, 2010 @ 15:11:25

    I’m a yes person if it doesn’t involve money, jail, or injury. I’ve always want to try a day of either all yes’s or no. My yes day would end with me broke, drunk and in jail . The no day would likely lead to unemployment. This is why I live by the money, jail or injury

    But the yes day would be so much fun. 🙂

    Reply

  4. Sherri
    Sep 10, 2010 @ 15:22:40

    My life is as boring as yours only it’s because I have no invitations, not because I say no to them. I know I could be less afraid to do things, though, invitation or not. Definitely lopsided toward “no.”

    I get invitations, but after a while people stop asking. They are shocked when I actually go out and do something.

    Reply

  5. Vodka and Ground Beef
    Sep 10, 2010 @ 16:21:54

    We’re like twin souls, except I say “yes” to things initially only to panic and look for ways out immediately. I never want to do anything. And I don’t consider myself a boring person; I’m just a person who likes doing nothing, and I do it really well.

    Great post.

    Thank you. I do nothing quite well too. I too say yes to things and then the day of the event I’m hiding under the bed hoping nobody makes me go.

    Reply

  6. beckyb26
    Sep 10, 2010 @ 17:36:35

    I saw that movie for the first time a few months ago and loved it. I totally thought that things would start going better if I became a yes person.

    I do think I’m pretty balance though. I sometimes say yes to be nice when I really don’t want to do something. So maybe I’m not so balanced….

    You do lots of fun things. If I said yes to half the stuff you do I’d be pretty busy.

    Reply

  7. Fuck My Table
    Sep 10, 2010 @ 21:30:58

    I typically say no to social outings. I am not a people person. I have no close friends, unless you count my husband. We’ve been doing everything together for three years and we aren’t sick of each other yet.

    On the rare occasion I say yes to a social outing, I usually regret it and wish I had said no.

    When you have to be social to strangers for a living, hanging out with a bunch of people isn’t much fun.

    On the flip side, I don’t mind inviting the few friends we do have over to our home. That way, we choose what we do or do not do, and I find it much more enjoyable.

    I’m such a bitchy hermit.

    Me too.

    Reply

  8. DarcsFalcon
    Sep 10, 2010 @ 22:44:42

    Oh no. NOnononono. NO. Not yes. Never yes!

    I’m with ya, sister.

    Reply

  9. Sparty Girl
    Sep 11, 2010 @ 07:57:33

    I am mostly a yes person, I suppose. I try and look for ways to say yes, especially to the kids (the same basic philosophy you used). I’m not as likely to seek out social events as I am to say yes to them when asked, though. I’m pretty introverted that way.

    I think I like to limit my interaction with other people. I deal with people for a living and I get sick and tired of them. I just want some peace and quiet on my days off.

    Reply

  10. frolicking lady
    Sep 11, 2010 @ 11:30:18

    I go through yes moods and no moods – these moods tend to last weeks or months at a time. Sometimes I’m a total hermit and can’t be bothered to go out for anything, other times I can’t get enough socializing and want to hang out with friends well past everyone else’s tolerance for company.

    That seems pretty balanced as long as everyone isn’t giving you the bum’s rush.

    Reply

  11. redriverpak
    Sep 11, 2010 @ 14:56:21

    Many times my mouth has said YES or NO when my brain or heart was screaming the exact opposite. Being an idiot, I usually have no idea who was right…. Makes for a damned confused brain sometimes…

    I’ve had times where my mouth said, “Yes” and my brain said, “Liar”. Many times when I agree to something I have no intention of following through.

    Reply

  12. zman
    Sep 11, 2010 @ 15:07:31

    I am a yes person…cause of my life circumstances and i ask myself….if i stay home and i missing out…most of the time its yes lets go….I feel like this….you cant go in reverse or turn around on lifes journey..so screw it..its ahead of you go do it….say yes more….you will not regret it……zman sends

    Sometimes I think I should do everything, enjoy friends while I can, eat, drink and be merry because life is too short. But I am a person who needs a lot of alone time to be emotionally healthy.

    Reply

  13. whatigotsofar
    Sep 11, 2010 @ 16:04:39

    Sometimes it helps to be a no person. What if the question was: “Hey Yellowcat, shove this banana up your coochie?” I think no would be the appropriate answer.

    Uh…I guess it depends on what day of the week it is.

    Reply

  14. M.T.
    Sep 11, 2010 @ 19:53:33

    I tend to lean toward no also. I keep a very small group of aquaintences, as I generally find other people to be undependable. Some say my life is boring, but I’m perfectly comfortable hanging out at home, and just reading and writing or drinking or sleeping. I like to think that only fools need constant stimulation, but perhaps that’s just me attempting to justify my isolationist behavior.

    I have a lot of hobbies to occupy my time, so I’m not bored. Once in a while I get lonely, but that goes away. Most people talk too much.

    Reply

  15. blunt delivery
    Sep 11, 2010 @ 21:53:22

    me = used to be a yes person/ people pleaser.

    in my latter years, i have definitely changed to a no person. and let me tell you… it’s way funner.
    or whatever.

    There is a certain freedom in saying no.

    Reply

  16. The Vashta Nerada
    Jan 20, 2011 @ 22:37:46

    I am mostly a yes person. I thought it was a great life to lead until I started to realize that I wasn’t really getting anywhere. Now, I’ve started saying no when it is completely justified and have found it to be startlingly effective in all aspects of my life. You want a free water because you can’t afford to tip me at all? That’s cool, I want a fucking new car. You want to skip rent this month and ask me to cover for you because you blew all of your money on drinks? Great! I’m rolling in dough, but you better give me your damn rent before the 5th or the curb will have another addition to it. It may make me seem like a heartless bitch, but as my life has progressed, I’ve realized that I need to take care of myself first.

    I used to be a yes person, then I learned how others took advantage of me. I became a no person. I turn down all offers and all fun. Saying yes now only involves how it will benefit me and make me happy. Fuck everyone else.

    Reply

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