Episode 77: Say YES to You

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You know that friend or family member in your life that is constantly saying “no”? Want to go to lunch? NO. Want to come over? NO. Want to hang out? NO. After a while of hearing NO you tend to just stop asking, right? The relationship suffers, connection cut off, and pretty soon there’s a complete disconnect. No one likes hearing NO. But what about the relationship you have with yourself? How often do you say NO to you on a daily basis? In today’s episode, I want to teach you the importance of learning to say YES to you. YES to connection. YES to confidence. 

Welcome back to the show! We hit a new record last week with the podcast so I want to say a huge Thank you to my listeners. You all are amazing and thank you for being here and on this journey with me. Isn’t it a fun journey??? I love this work. I love all of you – even if you think I don’t know you, I know me and I know how much love I have in my heart for you. So thank you!

This month in the membership we’re diving deep into our emotions and learning how to accept, feel, and be able to create our feelings. Our feelings are the very thing that drives us. We never take action without feeling an emotion first so if you’re not excited about your results our where you’re at right now. If your life isn’t an 8 or better in all areas then we need to look at our emotions and what’s driving our actions and creating our results. 

We chase after happiness and try numbing out anything unpleasant – boredom, discomfort, unease but we do so from a “what can I do” standpoint and if you know the model you also know that the DOING part comes AFTER the feeling part, which comes AFTER the thinking part. So if  we want to feel a different feeling. If we want to create different results for ourselves we need to stop focusing on our actions so much and the HOW but rather the thoughts we’re thinking.

We have more control over our emotions than we realize. We don’t just feel preset feelings and learn to set those in motion. We create the feelings themselves, the depth and shade of happiness and joy, the breadth, depth, and expanse of them. This is something you won’t want to miss. Come join the Catalyst membership. It’s amazing. I can’t wait to teach it to you. The doors are open – come be a part of this incredible group! Go to www.thecatalystcoaching.com/membership

Okay, time for a community spotlight – I love these! So fun! This one is from, Sweet Shabby Life, She writes: Beautiful

“You are beautiful both inside and out. Your voice makes me want to hear all you have to say. Your composure brings calm to my spirit.”

Ah, isn’t that a gorgeous review??? Thank you, thank you, thank you! So much gratitude for your sincerity and love.

Listen guys, if you want to be featured on the show, you know what to do! Head over to iTunes and leave a rating and a review. Thank you for that!

Okay, today I want to bring you something that I’ve been thinking about for a while – like years actually. It’s such a simple concept, somewhat difficult to do at first but the yields amazing results for you and the overall quality of your life. This is the practice of saying YES to yourself.

We’re so practiced at saying NO. From the earliest of ages we’re told NO constantly. It’s estimated that children hears the word, NO more than 400 times a day. 

No exaggeration. Think about it, we don’t just say, No, don’t touch that. We say, “no, no, no, no don’t touch that!” right? And it’s no secret that the more you hear things, especially in that tone and demeanor it etches and carves patterns in our minds that last us unfortunately a lifetime.

The yeses became so few that we craved them. We still do.  We all love a “yes”. YES meant that you got what you wanted, YES meant that something good was on it’s way, YES meant agreement/acceptance/validation/praise.

No wonder why we love the word, “YES”

But it wasn’t something that was easily or freely given. Yes usually came with a cost or a but or with stipulations or limitations. It was a yes attached with a no or a yes but with a ball and chain of a no still lagging closely, heavily behind. It’s only partially fun, partially approving, partially connective.

We all know that one friend or family member who is constantly saying NO, right? It doesn’t even matter what it is, you can pretty much guess it’s going to be a NO before you even ask. Want to go to lunch? NO. Want to hang out? NO. Want to get the kids together? NO. and it gets to the point where you don’t even want to ask anymore because you already know it’s going to be a No and you don’t want to set yourself up for rejection again and again.

I have a family member that’s like this and it was so deflating but you still loved them and wanted them to be a part of your life so we’d continue to invite and we’d muster up a glimmer of hope, like, well…,maaaaybe this time…? And we’d brace ourselves for the anticipated NO and on the incredibly rare occasion, they actually said, YES it was always accompanied by a BUT. Yes BUT. Yes, we can come over BUT we can only stay 15 minutes. Yes, BUT we have things going on. And I get that we have lives – the but isn’t bad, it’s just another no that’s more hidden and sneaky. 

Think about how all of that feels. Think about how close you are to that person in your life. Think about how it feels to be around them, to talk to them, to even just think about them. Even just thinking about that person can bring up discomfort and unease because we don’t like hearing NO.

And it’s not the word no that we don’t like. It’s the meaning we place on that word. We’re totally okay hearing no in some situations. Like, “Hey do you want some of my fries? No? Okay.” In that case, it’s more like a phew!

But when it’s something else like, want to spend time with me and the answer is no it can hurt not because of the no but because of what we make it mean. 

We make it mean rejection and that hurts a lot.

And this episode isn’t about our relationship with others and I’m certainly not, nor ever will tell you to say YES to others if you don’t want to – this episode is devoted to the relationship you have with yourself.

How often are you saying NO to yourself? How often do you restrict, limit, or deflate your own relationship with you?

What do you think it does to your relationship with you over time if all you’re ever saying to yourself is no?

No, you can’t do that – you should be more productive

No, you can’t have that – you don’t have enough money

No, you can’t eat that – you’re too fat 

No, you can’t create that – you don’t deserve it, you’re not enough

No, you can’t share that – people will think you’re crazy

No, you can’t say that they’ll be upset or offended!

No, No, No, No, No…

Over time, little by little, with each “No” we chisel away at our souls and diminish our self-confidence. And as a result, we turn to people-pleasing, to looking outward for validation and approval, looking outward for permission and encouragement and this creates a whole slew of problems for ourselves. 

So I want to teach you how to bypass this. I want to teach you how to mend and strengthen the bonds you have with yourself. I want to teach you how to say YES to yourself which in turn, means saying YES to your life.

It’s so hard to say YES to ourselves because we make it mean that we’re being selfish. We think, “I can’t do that. I have people to care for, a calling to fulfill, work to do, colleagues that need me, friends that are expecting things from me, a family that needs me, and in this light it’s no wonder why we’re so quick to say NO to ourselves – we’re so focused on saying YES to everyone else.

So let’s start there. The key two your own personal spark of joy lies in your focus. We need to stop focusing on saying, “NO” to other people and instead focus on saying YES to you. Any time you say NO you’re also saying YES to someone or something else.

Every time. But we don’t see it because we’re just focused on the no or the fear of saying no and we don’t see that there’s a yes too. This requires a higher level of emotional maturity and intention from ourselves. We’re saying yes to our own needs. Yes, to what you want and what fills you, and yes to your own values.

We’re socialized to believe that other’s needs are more important than our own so our needs get pushed off to the side with the intent that “later…” we’ll see to them but later never comes and time after time it just accumulates and not in a positive way and then we wonder why we’re stressed, depleted, empty, lonely, insecure, resentful, and overwhelmed.

We’ve never been taught the importance of saying YES to ourselves. Even the mere thought of it probably has some of you feeling very uncomfortable with this but let help you out. 

We can love the part of us that loves to serve and help others. You can love that you are the kind of person that does that for people and has a desire to do that for others however, you can’t pour from an empty bucket. At some point, you have to recharge and refill.

It’s like the airplane analogy, right? The instructions are always to put your air mask on first before assisting anyone else because you can’t help them if you’re passed out. You have to be in a position of health and strength to be able to help others. 

Same concept here. You can’t keep giving to others if you have nothing to give. And something interesting happens here – like when we get to that empty point. We then shame ourselves because we should be able to give more. We see our tiredness or budding resentment as a sign of weakness and shame instead of seeing it for what it is, an empty bucket coming from a person with an estranged inner relationship.

We give so many people leeway to be human, especially if they’re struggling with circumstances. We wouldn’t expect a ton from someone that’s coming from a rocky home or troubled relationship. We’d think, “oh well…they’re really having a hard time right now, we can find someone else to ask”

But we never realize that we’re each coming from a rocky, troubled relationship with ourselves and still we expect so much from ourselves – meaning we think we need to say yes to others and what they want from us all the while saying, “no, no, no” inside to you.

If you want to come from a place of confidence in your life you need to shift your focus, energy, and attention on the one relationship that affects everything else and that’s the relationship you have with yourself.

The first step in the confidence model is to KNOW yourself – that means with each decision you’re making knowing what that means to you and for you.

When someone asks you to pick up an extra project at work and you’re thinking about them and how can I say no to them??? You instead need to think first, if I say yes to them what am I saying to myself?

No, to that evening you were going to relax and recharge. 

No, to hanging out with friends or a loved one.

Or maybe it’s not a no at all. Maybe you want that extra project, extra pay, extra kudos at work and all that is for you. But do you see the difference between saying yes because you’re afraid of what that co-worker will think of you vs saying yes because it’s a win for you too?

Saying YES to ourselves is an amazing shift that invites a powerful ripple effect in your life. It feels good to hear a yes, to hear that positive affirmation and validation. I want you to make the yes to you the first priority.

Instead of feeling pressured to answer a request on the spot practice giving yourself a moment or more to think about what the yes is for you. How can you always tell yourself yes?

Yes, we can do this project because we want to AND we can have me time tomorrow.

Yes, is a power word. It implies forward movement. Something is going to happen, something is going to move forward, something is about to change. 

Saying and hearing yes is exciting and puts you in an anticipatory space, simply open to a new opportunity no matter how small it may be.

Richard Branson once said, “I’ve enjoyed life a lot more by saying yes than by saying no.”

And I want to be clear that this isn’t a be a “YES MAN” movement. I don’t believe in that. I don’t believe in saying YES to any and everything just because…We need and WANT to be intentional with our time and mental energy, however, just know that every time you’re saying NO, you’re also saying YES to something else or someone else and check-in because the person that has THE most sway in your life, is you.

Okay so here are some reasons I love saying YES to myself:

Saying yes is empowering. It’s open and validating. It’s affirming that that is great, let’s do it! It puts you in control of your life instead of feeling limited and wondering how you’ll scramble sometimes eventually to put yourself first.

Dave Ramsey has this saying that he uses often talking about money. He says that budgeting is telling your money where you want it to go instead of wondering where it went.

The same concept is true here too. Saying YES to yourself is telling yourself where you want your time and energy to go instead of reflecting back and wondering where it went, or to whom it went.

Saying yes doesn’t mean that you give into everything and we become hedonistic. It means that you’re important enough to be heard and each idea that has a spark of light and excitement is worth exploring. Sometimes we have these brilliant ideas and after talking about it out loud for a few minutes we’re like, “and scratch that…nevermind” – sometimes you change your mind and that’s okay – but what matters is that you gave yourself the opportunity to hear yourself out and decide instead of just ignoring that little voice or extinguishing that spark.

When you start saying yes to yourself you’ll find your way more intentional about how you spend your time and what you think about. Your primitive natural man brain is all about what’s easy, just pleasure minded so when you’re not deliberately thinking you’ll say yes to others and wonder why you’re binging on the entire pint of Ben and Jerry’s – for stress relief. But when you’re intentional about including yourself, your ideas, your desires you find you make better, more productive choices for yourself.

It’s kind of like that concept of the kid that acts out because they just want attention even if it’s negative attention but when they’re listened to, when someone takes the time to sit with them they stop acting out.

It’s the same thing here. Your inner you is going to get attention one way or another and why not be proactive about it and feel good the entire time instead of trying to make up for it later.

Saying yes doesn’t mean giving in to anything and everything. It just means you’re willing to listen to yourself and decide what’s best for you.

Say YES to the sugar on your terms instead of NO,  you can’t have that!

But say it like this, “YES! We are totally going to devour that cupcake but on Saturday like we’d planned” Or whenever you’d planned for it.

And “YES, that show is amazing we’re going to watch it all on Friday, after work”

I’m currently obsessed with Call the Midwife because you guys, it’s amazing – go watch it and my inner hobbit, my natural man would love to just binge watch it and not do anything else but I know that that’s not what I really want overall or what’s on my schedule. 

When I’m conscious about my time I’ve found that I love watching it when I’m walking in the mornings. I can watch a full episode and then get on with my schedule but it’s so good and after the episode is over my inner hobbit is like, “we should watch another one” and instead of saying, “nooooo…we have to get to xyz” I say, “Heck yes we will! Tomorrow morning, same time, same place, you betcha!” 

And it let’s my brain feel heard, validated – like “you’re right! That’s a brilliant idea! Let’s do it!” But on my terms, on my higher brain’s terms and what I really want with my time and energy.

So I can move on to XYZ without feeling deflated or rejected like we do when we tell ourselves no. 

And listen, this amazing thing happens when you start to apply this concept, your brain starts offering up other ideas, thoughts, dreams, light bulb moments because saying yes invites collaboration. It’s not afraid to speak up anymore. It knows you’re going to hear it out and feels safe to dream again.

Your relationship with yourself will 10x when you do this and you will feel 10 times better and when you feel better you do better! It’s a win-win all around. You’re telling your time and energy where to go, while feeling amazing instead of wondering where the time went and how you got to this point.

Saying YES to yourself looks like, “Yes, and…”

“Yes, and we will”

“Yes, and you know what else would be great?”

“Yes, and thanks for thinking of that”

That and extends the thought and inner conversation. It invites community and collaboration with yourself which contributes to the first principle in the confidence model – KNOW yourself in every detail possible. Which is the stark opposite of NO. No shuts doors to thoughts, to curiosity, to digging deeper, to understanding. It’s just NO period. But Yes, AND…is an opportunity for further discussions, further connection, and the first step towards a really confident stance.


John Templeton once said, “The person who is willing to say yes to experience is the person who discovers new frontiers.”

Saying yes to yourself creates confidence, it invites connection and with that you’re able to trust yourself more so you can say yes to new experiences and opportunities that you might have missed otherwise.

Saying YES feels good. All the things we think we want from others is because we think that if they said certain words, or did certain things then we’d feel better but that’s not how it works. That feeling comes from your thoughts. You make yourself feel how you want to feel by the thoughts you think so when you get into a practice of saying YES it’s affirming you as a human being. 

We don’t NEED others to do that for us, to validate us, to praise us, to even hear us – we can want it but needing is putting our own feelings and emotional wellbeing on hold until they change and that’s a super-fast way to invite insecurity and fear into your life.

When you say yes to you, you are letting yourself know that, “Yes, I hear you, I see you, I’m paying attention, I’m listening, I respect you, and you matter”

All the things we really want from others you have the capacity to give to yourself NOW. You don’t have to wait for something they can’t give you anyway.

Say YES. In all things say yes to you.

When your brain wants to think about others and what they might be thinking of you, pause and ask yourself, how can I say yes to myself in this moment? What does a yes for me look like?

Alan Cohen said, “When you learn to say yes to yourself, you will be able to say no to others, with love.”   

We’re mostly worried about what others will think of us when we say or if we say no to them but when you say yes to yourself you’re able to show up with love and compassion. Love for you and love for them. That creates a ripple effect of more love, more connection because you can be genuine and honest. 

You can be fully present and while yes, they’re going to be disappointed to hear no when it’s a no it’ll also get rid of the mind drama of doubt. “What if they’re just saying yes and they don’t really mean it?” That drama and doubt. When you’re honest they’ll know that when it’s a yes it’s yes. You’re all in, you’re all there not because you think you have to be or that you should but because you want to be.

That bonds and builds connection. All your relationships will be upleved when you take care of you first. You’ll have more love to give because your love will be full. 

Yes to you. 

Yes to your time.

Yes to confidence.

Yes to life!

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