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  • Smitha Shetty

Saying Yes (Jim, Carrey... Thank you)


As far as life experiments go, this one was very atypical of me. I like simplicity, order and logic in my universe. This definitely wasn’t it. I certainly didn’t pick it up because I enjoyed the movie. Full disclosure-Not a Jim Carrey fan. Sorry Saanvi!

Life, while I had a lot to be grateful for, didn’t feel right. Boredom, incomplete, lacking-I couldn’t put a finger to it.

Then my daughter made me watch the movie ‘Yes Man’. I watched it under duress, I reiterate, but something just clicked that night..and so began the journey.

I said YES, like Jim Carrey’s character Carl Allen-to all new experiences-(As long as they were not illegal or harmful. Lets not get too carried away here)

And in that year, I opened myself to a whole new world. Connected with people I would never have otherwise, embarked on a health plan and lost a measly 8 pounds, changed jobs on a promotion (and got fired 3 months later, but that’s a story for another day), went on 3 road trips, joined dance classes, group meditation classes, completed a long planned certification, started volunteering at two organizations.

And did I also tell you that I went on walks at 3.30 AM in the morning-in New England winter. That’s 14 degrees Fahrenheit for you sitting in those lovely sunny beaches. I also joined classical singing classes and woke my husband up at 11.00 PM to the sound of my…ahem..Practicing. You get the drift. New experiences, new opportunities, new people, new thoughts with a sprinkling of self-care, self-discovery and adventure

And no, I did not see all initiatives to the end. Some initiatives didn't take off. Some, I failed at-miserably. I stopped practicing classical singing

under threat of walk-out from hubby and kids. But that’s the whole other learning I had-To be OK with failures. And because I was living such a rich life, with so many experiences to look forward to-a random failure here and there didn’t hurt as much.

I did stop the experiment after about a year and a half. I needed to take a break-breathe a little, complete some of these initiatives. But some of the remnant of the courage stays with me. I am now more inclined to say Yes when I would have said No, I don’t overthink as much and this whole experience has made me better in ways I cant quite articulate.

And every once in a while, when things slow down and life seems robotic, I step up and say.. YES.

So, who’s joining the YES challenge with me? :)



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