15 Ways I've Said 'YES' In My Life
15 Ways I’ve Said ‘YES’ In My Life
By Courtney Harris
Three years ago, a friend sent me a birthday card that said: “Welcome to your 30s, where you’ll give so many less fucks.”
It’s now September, the month of my birth, and it’s a perfect time to reflect on what giving less fucks has meant to me.
The past three years have been filled with invitations from and for myself — opportunities to say “YES!” in bold and impactful ways. These invitations have inspired my journey of showing up for myself more fully.
I’ll be fully transparent in telling you that saying “yes” is a process that is NOT always pretty.
Throughout the past three years, I’ve opened my eyes to traumas and hurts I’ve held silently in my heart, accrued credit card debt, and worked 7 days a week most weeks.
AND, it’s also meant waking up each morning with a sense of affirmation, a deep knowing that I am becoming more and more myself.
The invitations don’t always feel warm, fuzzy, and welcoming. Over time, I’ve learned that they require compassionate and skilled listening. My heart and my gut are in dialogue, as I check in with my feelings, needs, values, intentions, and goals.
Many times, these opportunities feel uncomfortable, yet the conversation between my heart and gut is one of affirmation. Often, my invitations feel urgent, pressing, and necessary. Here, my heart and gut provide the foundation of trust.
That birthday message from three years ago… It’s proved to be true:
When you give less fucks, it’s easier to listen to yourself.
Here Are 15 Invitations I’ve Said Yes To…
I don’t say “yes” to every invitation.
See, I’m a future-thinker, always planning for tomorrow and the day after and the week after. In other words, I’m anxious as hell. I struggle with generalized anxiety, and let me tell you, she (my anxiety) really likes to get on my calendar and in my mind.
During the last three years, as I’ve given less fucks, I’ve become more skilled at sifting through the mental chatter and determining which invitations serve me and which do not.
I’ve learned to love on my anxiety, and to not always listen to her. She’s a protector, fighting to keep me safe, secure, and stable. And, I don’t always need this protection and not in the ways she thinks I do.
As I have developed my heart-gut listening skills, I’ve accepted some pretty serious invitations from myself.
Over the last 15 years, I’ve given less fucks and said YES to:
Leaving a traditional public education teaching gig (I loved) to enter a period of discernment;
Appreciating getting “fired” from a toxic job that was literally making my body and mind sick;
Quitting alcohol and stepping into intentional sobriety;
Writing (read: emotionally rewriting) the story of being raped and publishing it publicly;
Moving in with my partner;
Working with (and asking for help from) therapists, coaches, and mentors;
Starting a personal blog
Saying “no” to going back to school for a second master's degree;
Birthing a life coaching business that aligns with my passions, gifts, and skills of working with teens and young adults;
Writing a book;
Networking the hell out of Austin and beyond and making new friends;
Asking my partner to marry me (and saying yes when he asked me 2 months later);
Applying for a TEDx talk;
Building community and conversation about the work white women need to do to end white supremacy;
Seeing Beyonce live in Houston twice.
Life is Practice
If we intend it and put some will behind it, we will grow.
Each day we are practicing for the next and the next and the next. All of these “yeses” along my journey have helped me affirm myself for being the badass that I am. Despite the weeks in which I met zero new clients, the days I have cried over my website, the afternoons that I get back into bed because the to-do list feels to long, I’m saying “yes” to myself.
I’m saying YES to my creative powers. To my gifts. To my heart. To growing. And this is what happens when you give less fucks. You let go of what you think life is supposed to look like and mean, and you just live it. With greater presence. With more heart. And you let yourself take up space.
How can you say yes to yourself today?
More about Courtney Harris…
As a Life Coach for Teens and Parents, Courtney helps young people get out of worry, isolation, and anxiety and into connection. Through coaching, tweens, teens, and young adults find their voice and grow confidence as they explore their sense of self and personal power. With a Master's in Special Education, and 10 years of teaching experience, including Social and Emotional Learning, Courtney brings vast knowledge of the teenage brain and effective family interventions to her coaching practice. As a Positive Discipline Parent Educator, Courtney supports parents in exploring kind but firm methods for leading their children and teens; simultaneously, she lovingly guides parents in maintaining self-care and growing alongside their children. Clients who work with Courtney have the opportunity to connect more deeply to themselves and others. Ultimately, families who work with Courtney achieve improved communication, deeper trust, and greater peace. Stay connected with Courtney on her blog , IG and FB.