Many times in my life, whether it was in a personal or professional situation, I’ve hear about “knowing how to say no”. Often laced with a bit of judgement (“You’re working too much, you should learn how to say ‘No’ and push back.”), we are taught to set up boundaries and clear limits.
Recently, I was telling my brother who recently moved back to our parents’ (and struggling a bit with the adaption), that when it comes to parents it’s all about love and limits: I love you Mum, but could you please knock before entering my bedroom?
Setting limits are a good thing, they help channel the millions of little things happening in our life, they help protecting ourselves from harm and perhaps to be a bit more serene.
However, in some occasions, limits are there to be pushed.
And that’s what I wanted to talk about today. In a previous post, I was talking about the Blank Page starting a new life abroad was giving you – that you could decide to make everything out of it. Well, t’s still true but what I’m realising is how much that blank page is also influenced by the people I’ve met and how often I said ‘yes’ to them.
I was chatting with one of my colleagues recently and when he told me he was thinking at some point to move abroad to try something new, I was like “DO IT!”. I was very talkative about how much fun this experience would be because he would end up doing things he never thought he would.
When everything is possible, the set limits are a bit more fuzzy and it is probably the best opportunity we’ll get to push them a little further. In the past months, I’ve picked up activities that I had never done before, and never imagined I’d do, just because I said ‘Yes’ to friends.
- “Do you want to go rock climbing?”
- “Sure, why not!”
Saying ‘yes’ in those conditions felt like a tiny push of my limits. I was just trying something different once… It’s not a big deal, right?
But saying ‘yes’ also felt like it unlocked a part of my imagination.
I mean, if I can go rock climbing, I can certainly learn how to paraglide!… Or mountain bike! That tiny and safe ‘yes’ had much more to it than I expected and I’m now wondering where it’s going to take me.
I want to continue to say ‘yes’ to people, to crazy plans and to more quiet ones (like that Philharmonic Concert). I want to continue to trigger my imagination and push a bit more my limits.
How about you? Do you like to push your limits? Do you like to say ‘yes’ to new things? How far are you ready to go?