“No’s” limit everyone, especially yourself.  They are selfish, sometimes rude and I hate them.

Scrap ’em.

Have you ever stopped to think that maybe your “No’s” are a pain in the ass to those around you? The friends and family that end up having to cater to them? You don’t drive or you don’t eat at a certain place AND you have no other suggestions and are unwilling to compromise? You refuse the hard work of the hostess at her dinner party because you “have a texture thing?”

Thanks. You are a joy to the rest of us. Also, embarrassing.

Tough love, Gumdrop.

It is my belief that we have to write our own, personal instruction manual and that we need different things at different times in our lives. On the one hand, that means cultivating your “no’s” –and then questioning them often.

But that does not mean that we make someone else feel bad because our preferences come first. In being just a little more mindful, everyone can be happy.

Most often, saying “yes” to something is the answer, so you might as well be comfortable with changing your mind.

Change is the only constant in life. Be it.

Willfully limiting yourself is the most ridiculous thing ever. You end up painting yourself into a corner, the only way out is to consider a new direction. Start by taking stock of all those things that you have decided that you “don’t do.”

Embrace Spontaneity. Don’t just write things off because you don’t have time or you have other plans. Some of the best times to be had are the ones that come at you from nowhere in the seemingly boring guise of “Hey! I’m taking the kids for pizza, wanna come?” And end at 10 o’clock at night, totally exhausted and happy with an arm full of temporary tattoos and your face painted like a cheetah. Memories happen this way.  Don’t miss it because you’re “off carbs…”

Take one for the team. Just shut your face, SHUT IT! And commit to having a great time at whatever it is you are doing. Do the ever-loving HELL out of it. If my husband wants to go see Pearl Jam, not only will I buy him the tickets myself, but I will go with him and I will not complain once. I will have a great time and I will list for him my favorite parts. He will not owe me anything and I won’t brag about what an amazing wife I am. Be chivalrous.

Regularly try the foods/ activities that you have ruled out. You may not know this, but it is insulting to not take an offering from the Host. You take that thing, you try it, you under no circumstances make face and you say the nicest thing possible. “I don’t normally do fried oysters, but the sauce is incredible!” Be diplomatic or never be invited back. Also, did you know that tastebuds are constantly developing so if you tasted something as a kid and not since, your argument is invalid.

One time, I decided that I needed to listen to pop music so that I could talk to my ten year old step and my tweenager cousins. Instead of NPR, I listened to music stations on my commute. You know what I discovered? Macklemore. So keep at it. Be a well rounded person.

Get over the fear of looking silly. I don’t care how, but you will learn so much more about yourself this way. Nobody looks graceful at Yoga the first few times. I take it as a “personal challenge” and say “HELL YEAH!” to all Yoga positions, just to try. I’m not saying that you injure yourself, but I am saying that you might surprise yourself and learn something.

Make your own fun. The bottom line is that we are going to have to do things in life that are not fun. For me, the best compliment is “it doesn’t matter what we are doing, Fancypants is here!”

Make “No’s” your “NOPE.” Ask yourself why you are inclined to say “no.” Then ask yourself “what is the worst that could happen?” Don’t discount things. There is something to be learned from everything. If it means enough to your friend, it should mean something to you that she is inviting you to be apart of it. Try to understand their passion even if you don’t share it.

Unknown artist

YOLO is usually a “no” for me, but in neon, with a seagull over it….Unknown artist 2014


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