I just finished reading Shonda Rhime's book 'The Year of Yes' at 3 o'clock in the morning (I couldn't sleep, a rarity for me, and decided instead of being frustrated I would use that time).
It was an easy and enjoyable read, which wasn't surprising as Ms. Rhimes is the creator and head writer for Grey's Anatomy and Scandal (along with being the executive producer of How to Get Away with Murder starring my girl crush Viola Davis).
The premise of the title, which is the premise of the book itself, is that although Ms. Rhimes was a successful, award-winning creative professional, she rarely went out to any of the numerous events she was invited to. One day, her older sister said "You never say yes to anything" and the power and truth of that statement hit Shonda hard, very hard. So hard in fact that it shook her up and made her reassess her success and her reticence to enjoy it fully. She let the truth settle over her and after a little while came to the conclusion that she would change things by saying yes to everything thrown her way for one year. The Year of Yes.
I don't want to spoil the book for anyone but will say that the experiences that she said yes to were inspiring and entertaining, as is her voice. This publication is a welcome edition to my library and has earned a spot there amongst equally liberated women as Lena Dunham, Amy Poehler, Caitlyn Moran and Tina Fey.
Ms. Rhimes is an empowered woman who writes shows and books that empower other women (and men). Among the strong and powerful statements she makes in this book are:
While reading this book I realized that her commitment to the idea of saying yes to every invitation that came her way was relevant to me in my life. I have a confession to make...I have been in hiding (from who or what I do not know but I have definitely made myself less visible in the world by choice, declining invitations with lame excuses.) This is not serving me well. I am veal inasmuch as Shonda declared herself a year ago.
This book and its message have inspired me. I hope to follow Ms. Rhimes lead and get back out there in the world, reacquaint myself with my badassery and actually make a difference instead of just hash tagging my intentions with no follow through.
Thank you Shonda. Yes. Thank you.
In conclusion, I would recommend this book to anyone who finds themselves avoiding potentially uncomfortable situations. Life is for living and as Shonda learned and shared, it's way more fun to say yes.