March Diy + Business Book Club 2016

 

Diy and business book club from Dear Handmade Life

Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about the word ‘yes’. It seems like a few years ago it was all about the word ‘no’. Collectively it felt like we were all feeling overwhelmed balancing our work, creative pursuits, family life, self-care and online lives and I started hearing a lot of people talking about the importance of saying ‘no’.

I was totally on board with the whole ‘no’ thing. As someone who cherishes an empty inbox but gets hundreds of emails a day… hearing my community assure me that it was okay to say no felt really good. I’m a natural people pleaser and I’m used to feeling a pang of guilt anytime I say no – whether it’s to a friend asking to hang out or to someone requesting an interview.

Recently I’ve noticed a backlash against saying no and people are talking more about saying yes which makes sense because if you say no to everything you miss opportunities, which is exactly what Shonda Rhimes writes about in her book “The Year of Yes”. I feel silly talking about how hard it is for me to juggle my work and personal life next to a woman like her. Shonda is the the creator, head writer, executive producer and showrunner of the medical drama television series Grey’s Anatomy, its spin-off Private Practice and the political thriller series Scandal AND she is a single mother of THREE kids. Granted her success likely has allowed her some advantages that help her make the most out of her time… I’m guessing she has an assistant and help with her kids but even so she receives about 2,500 emails a day and manages A LOT. Despite her work and personal commitments she’s made conscious decisions that keep her life manageable like deciding “that she would no longer respond to emails after 7 p.m. on weekdays or at all on weekends,” which she shared in this awesome interview on NPR.

“Work will happen 24 hours a day, 365 days a year if you let it,” she says. “It suddenly occurred to me that unless I just say, ‘That’s not going to happen,’ it was always going to happen. … Since turning off my phone at 7 p.m., there’s never been a thing so urgent that I regret having my phone off.” –Shonda Rhimes

We have the people who are telling us to say no and others telling us to say yes but ultimately there is no one answer that will fit every situation. The goal isn’t to say yes until you’re running on empty and too frazzled to sleep at night and nor is it to say no until you’re living a life of missed opportunities and solitude. The goal is to look at each pitch, question or opportunity and assess it… then feel confident saying either yes or no.

I don’t think we’re any less overwhelmed than we were a few years ago but I do think that we’re all talking more about the struggles of balancing everything. All this talk seems to have created a newfound empathy for each other. We’ve all admitted that we can’t do it all and we’re also okay with that. There is a time to say no and a time to say yes and you’re the only one who knows which answer is best for you in a particular situation.

I’ve had “The Year of Yes” on my nightstand for a few months but I still haven’t finished it. It’s not that I don’t love it… I do. It’s just that some nights there are other things have to say yes to… like spending a bit more time cuddling on the couch with my husband and pets or staying up late to work on a blog post (like tonight) or doing those things that I have to do but don’t really want to like folding laundry. The times I have said yes to taking 20 minutes to read before bed and dive into “The Year of Yes” have been insightful and awesome.

If you’re looking for some encouragement to say yes check out Shonda’s “The Year of Yes” and if you need to say yes to taking some time out to be creative be sure to check out the other titles in this month’s DIY and Business Book Club.

To enter the contest:

If you’re looking to say yes or inspire your creativity, check out the four titles in our DIY + Business Book Club this month. To be entered to win three of these books, The Complete Photo Guide to Candy Making, Vive Le Color! Vitality (Adult Coloring Book and Pencils) and Sock Yarn One-Skein Wonders just leave a comment on the post below letting us know something that you said yes or no to that you’re glad you did or that you regret. Post your comment by March 18th at midnight to be entered to win. Make sure to include your email address so we can get your address if you win and ship you some lovely things to read. {Contest open to US residents only}

-Nicole S.

Contest is now closed. Congrats to the winner Rose!!!

Diy and business book club from Dear Handmade Life

 

17 Comments

  1. I said no to a bunch of mindless tasks that I honestly did not want to do. I learned that it is ok to say NO and the world will not fall apart. I put Shonda’s book on my wishlist!

  2. I’ve said no to one creative endeavor which has made way to saying yes to new techniques & opportunities. I’m still a little apprehensive about the “no” part, but I’m learning to trust in the “yes” and it’s super exciting!

  3. I said yes to learning crafts outside my comfort zone. I’ve tried painting with acrylics & watercolor with only a tiny bit of anxiety. ?

  4. I JUST SAID YES TO WRITING AN AN ARTICLE ABOUT SMALL BUSINESS FINANCE FOR A FRIENDS BLOG AND JUST SAID NO TO SOMEONE WHO WANTED ME TO REDUCE MY TAX RETURN PRICING BECAUSE HE HAD ASSESSED IT TO BE A DIFFERENT WORTH. i HAVE LEARNED TO STAND BY WHAT MY TIME AND QUALITY OF WORK IS WORTH AND TO TO TAKE RISKS IN SHARING THAT WORK WITH OTHERS. yes yes no no YES YES YES!

  5. I said yes to a job that was way too much for one person. I crashed and burned, but I learned A LOT about business, what I can handle, what not to do, how to ask for help, to speak up, and to know my limits.

  6. I said YES to following my passion and develop my own small business which will include an online shop as well as working with local retailers to carry my mixed-media and photography. This means saying NO and leaving behind 21 years of safety in the corporate world – safe only because it is what I’ve always done and know. However it is time to follow my heart!

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