“Ask for what you want and be prepared to get it!” – Maya Angelou
After I lost my best friend, I thought I was done. My life is over. I felt I needed to say yes to everything. Deliver a pitch for a potential investor at 12 am, yes! Fly to a different country by 2 am right after the pitch and negotiate an agreement. Yes! Join board meeting by 1 pm fly back. Yes!
It all started when I began having a cardiac arrest, at 11 pm, thanks to my good friend and colleague who was able to get me the right medical treatment at the time.
My life flashed in front of me at that time, it was as if the quote –“An Unexamined life is not worth living” was tailor made for me. Saying “Yes”, too much cost me my family time. Saying “Yes” made me feel like Sandra Bullock in the movie While you were sleeping. She gets an award every year for being the best employee, being the back up for all other employees.
It made me feel like a doormat and helpless. That day in the hospital I made the decision to quit saying “yes” for everything and respect myself. I promised to listen to the subtle cues my body was throwing every time I overstepped on myself.
I began making this a written constitution. I made a list of all the things that I would no longer stand, it could be anything starting from the way I am treated, the way I react, the things I eat, the things I drink, the company of people which I am not comfortable, all the things that I do not and will not stand. This brought me awareness of the things that I dislike and helped to better respond to the cues that my body was throwing.
Then soon after , I wrote down what do I stand for; my values , my interests, the people whom I would want to have around, the way I would like to carry myself, the things I would choose to eat, drink, the particular brands I would choose to use. Everything that I would want to have.This gave me a clear demarcation with the things that I stand for and what violates my value system. I put it on my dressing table, my cubicle, kitchen, all the places for a few days to get acquainted with the new me.
Always remember -“More important than how fast you’re going, is where you’re headed”