Renowned Speaker and Play Activist Jenny Ward has brought the joy of life all over the globe. She received her MFA from New York University, is a licensed Life Coach and Author of three books. She is the CEO of Playward.com, and a proud mother of Leela, her greatest teacher on play.

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Yes To Life

Having a new president has stirred up hope and inspiration into our lives. It is a great time to let go of the past and open up to who we are as human beings. We are truly unlimited if we believe this to be true. Our children are great examples of truth. They come in with profound awe-ness of the possibilities life has to offer them.

Instead of focusing on “how we lose that awe” I would like to play with the idea of saying YES to life. Our children are the greatest teachers of our time. My daughter was at the playground the other day, and ran up to a stranger to ask if she wanted to play. “Do you want to play with me?”, she asked. “No I don’t” the stranger replied. What happened right after that is what effected me the most. My daughter decided to skip away and find someone who would say “yes” to her invitation. She did not harp on the stranger who said no, judge her, call 10 other friends to judge her, she just skipped away and found someone who said yes.
Sometimes we can get so lost in making things differently, that we forget that there are OTHER opportunities just waiting to say YES to us.
The most important lesson I learned by watching this exchange with my daughter was her love no matter what for the yes. She did not make the stranger “wrong” for not wanting to play with her. She accepted it and played anyway.

So often as big kids (aka grown ups) we get so lost in making others want to play with us, or love us, see us and accept us. I understand this desire, but so often we do not see those around us who are always saying YES to us. My father and I used to talk about if there were 60 people at a function that I was keynoting at how I would always focus on the two that “didn’t like my speech” and forget about the 58 who LOVED it.
Furthermore, when it comes down to it, the one person we should always say YES to is ourselves. Yes to learning from our “mistakes”, yes to trying something new without fear of being judged and yes to always learning from the AWE-NESS our children live in. Remember that life is offering you YES all the time. Now go out and play in that.

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