Reasons to Say “Yes."

April 25, 2022

Reasons to Say “Yes."

May 29, 2023

In 2018, I received a text message from a trusted friend that went something like, “Would you be interested in attending an academy for midlifers…in Baja?”

Immediately, I came up with a long list of reasons to say, “No.” I could list them all here, but you’d be scrolling for a while. Suffice to say that on the list was a whole lot of “I don’t have,” a hearty sprinkling of “I’m not,” a big topping of “I don’t” and, of course, a little wedge of, “It’s not the right time.”

If you knew me, you’d know that my internal compass points heavily towards “Yes.” If you really, really knew me, you’d know that both change and transition are common themes that run throughout every job, role, and responsibility I’ve been asked to do. I should have been leaping towards this opportunity, right?

SO…why was my first response “No”? The simple answer is fear. The idea of shifting from being a constant traveler to becoming my own destination was intimidating. My journey inside did not include recommendations or star ratings — what if I didn’t like what I found?

Another friend snapped me out of it, “Why wouldn’t you say Yes?” Boom. #Duh.

I wrote down a “No” list that had been building in my head. And next to it I wrote my “Yes” list.

TaDa! Here’s what I noticed, my reasons to say “No” were rational, with a metric based on the protection of who I used to be. My “Yes” list was short but anchored in where I was, at that moment, and rather than rational, the metric was joy-based. And so, I crossed the bridge to Baja.

If you’re reading this, you may be curious about MEA, but have defaulted to a “No” list. So, I thought I’d share a few of my discoveries (as attendee, and two-time guest teacher) that might spark the creation of your own “Yes” list.

When asked, I describe MEA in Baja as a sanctuary. A protected place to revision your best self without fear. A safe environment to unload the protective stones you’ve collected about yourself — beliefs, biases, defense mechanisms, self-judgment — and just set them down. (Add to this the exponential volume of mental clutter we’ve all collected the last few years).

Before MEA, I was following my well-worn playbook for change. What I couldn’t see, was how I had evolved beyond my guides. What had once served my success, was now blocking me. Worse, my outdated blocks were hiding the path for my “what’s next.”

Just being in the sanctuary of MEA, amongst the broad variety of human experience and life paths meeting at the same MEA crossroads, is a lesson in itself. And as each person clears their own way, the support amongst the cohort is magical. I’ve experienced and observed the moment when each person’s path becomes visible, heads pointed down are lifted, voices locked are opened, shoulders cowed are straightened. There is only one word for this moment…YES.

If you’re paused at a crossroads, in transition and feeling alone, or are facing an insurmountable block, please join me and MEA co-founder Jeff Hamaoui, for an catalytic week of “Yes!” as you re-connect to your own wisdom and find inspiration with others, June 26-July 3 at the Baja workshop, “Get Unstuck: Turning Blocks Into Bridges” The Academy offers a limited number of scholarships and the deadline for registration is approaching soon. And, I’ll be on a free call tomorrow for those who want to learn more about Getting Unstuck: Tuesday, April 26 from 11 till noon PT. Register HERE.

Janis Nakano Spivack is a digital marketing entrepreneur who at midlife, did a major pivot into wellness, career-change, and intergenerational collaboration. Today, she is merging careers as the CXO and co-founder of Zenapse, a marketing tech platform that brings EQ into AI, while continuing to support her wellness innovation company, Brite Catalyst. In addition to attending MEA, Janis has been a guest faculty of two MEA cohorts, and is returning this June to co-lead “Get Unstuck: Turning Blocks into Bridges” with MEA co-founder, Jeff Hamaoui.

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