We say “yes” and “no” hundreds of times each day. “Yes, I’d like room in my coffee for milk.” “No, I’m not coming out for drinks tonight.” Many yeses and noes produce finite results and consequences when uttered. And then there are the yes/no moments that trigger a series of events to unfold, and “yes” means many outcomes.

It is easy to get paralyzed in this yes/no train of thinking. Yes or no becomes right or wrong—as if the paradigm of either/ or even exists. But we can reframe this thinking in terms of “yes” being the only possible answer. With any decision, we are actually only saying yes, and agreeing to the foreseeable implications of that choice. There never actually is a “no” but rather multiple paths of available opportunities to step into; you simply have to choose what you want to let into your path. This is the tricky part.   

Who is saying, “Yes”?


Is that your voice, or someone else’s? Is that your authentic voice or a conditioned one? It can be hard to tell with the chaos of distractions we build into our lives. Yes/ no becomes the oversimplified presentation of choice—of how we choose to have moments in our life unfold. Thich Nhat Hanh says, “At any moment you have a choice that either leads you closer to your spirit or further away from it.”

Leading closer to your spirit is very individual; only you can make a choice that is authentic to your spirit, your path. This is why advice is so tricky or basing decisions and actions off of what has worked for others in their journey. At any given moment, the road less traveled is not always the right road for everyone.

There is no answer here. No perfectly packaged ending. No box with a pretty bow that holds an answer inside. But here is a little advice: listen, reframe your thinking to, “What am I choosing to say yes to”, and consider whether you are already where you want to go. This advice, however, is not for all. 

Posted on April 17, 2015 .