Last summer while visiting my mom, we took a drive out to the country to stroll a farmer’s market. I drove her car and at one of the intersections she suddenly piped up, “Be careful here. It’s easy to get ham-boned.”
I looked at her a bit confused. “Do you mean t-boned?”
She started laughing. “Yes, t-boned.”
“Or some kind of cut of meat,” I bantered. Then it became a joke. At the next intersection I asked, “Should I be careful here, too? I don’t want to get sirloined.”
The loosely made point here is, last year—as I've noted here before—my writer's identity got ham-boned. After completing that pesky manuscript for my debut novel, I realized I didn't really want to write fiction. Bam! Sirloined!
But, fortunately, my love of writing and determination didn't take the hit, just the type of writing I had been pursuing. I needed to pick up the pieces and find a new direction. With renewed conviction, I decided to make this year, the Year Of Yes.
A popular theory currently touted proclaims if you open yourself to the universe, putting your desires and requests out there, it will respond by opening the doors. I don’t know about that. My beliefs tend to run more towards a source of faith, but the point is well-taken: if we’re not open and looking for opportunities, we won’t see them.
So during my Year Of Yes, I have determined if an opportunity presents itself to me, I will not hesitate in fear or cave to insecurity. I will just say yes. I am taking this even a step further: if a writing idea occurs to me, I will seek a way to get it published. This is a bit riskier; it means actually knocking on a few doors, not just being content to open the ones that present themselves to me.
Here’s what’s happened since I adopted this new attitude:
Smacked by Opportunity
It seems obvious, I know. But it’s such a freeing, exhilarating and scary feeling to start seizing opportunities. It means risking rejection (inevitable), stepping outside what is comfortable and known, and pushing the boundaries and knowledge a bit. It also means growing and embracing new experiences and perhaps, yes, even new successes.
Ultimately,here’s what I figure: if I’m going to be at an intersection in life, and I am at risk of getting t-boned, I might as well be on a possible collision course with opportunities and success.
What writing risks have you taken? How do you go about opening doors for opportunity? What doors have you looked at, gulped, and raised a shaky knuckle to? Will this be your Year of Yes?