One of my teachers once said, “By saying NO to something, we are inherently saying YES to another.” I’ve been around people who have this Just say YES mentality. In fact, if I had said NO…they got pissed. So, maybe I didn’t want to try THAT particular meditation. Or so what if I’m not into cars?
Maybe, by saying NO to things, I’m creating space for something else. Is there an area in your life where You need to say NO?? If you say NO, you’re lying. Well, probably. In fact, I’ll say you are definitely lying–just so I feel better about this post.
Anyone who knows me (or has read my blog) knows that I have been struggling with depression for the majority of my life. (Please, don’t give sympathetic comments…that’s NOT why I’m stating this.) And, most of you know that I’ve been working extra super stupidly hard on my life–essentially trying to feel good about living. This determination led me to yoga…which led me to therapy…which led me on a heart wrenching, embarrassing and joyful journey. Throw in any pair of opposites and I’ve experienced that too.
Eventually, about two years into this, I found myself in a place where things were going well. I was feeling full just by living. But…if things were going well on the inside. Let’s get real…life doesn’t cater on silver platters. (Usually, it’s some sort of dish composed of turds and twigs one moment, and golden tigerlilies the next.)
Everything was unfolding as I had worked hard for it…except for one area.Not that I wasn’t working hard…Actually, I was working hard. Working hard at suffering and bottling emotions up. Working hard at forgoing my own needs for that of another. Working hard at lying to myself; if I just give a little more, this will turn out how I want it to. Working hard at lying to my friends and family; Things are going GREAT!! *Smiley face* *wink* *giggle*
There came a tipping point. I needed out. And finally, I was able to get out. I said NO to the person in my life I cared most about.
When he finally was gone, I cried. I wandered around my apartment looking at how EMPTY it was. I could barely fill up a third of the space in my home…what the fuck?
A couple days later, there was a shift. I became happy. Really happy. No, seriously. I mean, for the first time in my life, I wasn’t depressed. I didn’t realize it was even possible. I wanted hugs (which is a big fucking deal if you know me) When I was with my friends, I just wanted to hug them and tell them how much I love them. I thought my heart was going to burst open. Where did this abundance of love and joy come from?? My only conclusion is that it was there the whole time…lurking beneath the dank and dark layers of childhood, personality and giving up my power to someone else.
So, saying NO can literally create a space to say Yes. Yes to love. Yes to tenderness. Yes to joy. Yes to life.