Have you ever been given a No that made you pause or stopped you in your tracks? There are so many kinds of No’s and they enter our lives in all kinds of ways. They can slip into a casual conversation, silently seep into consciousness while others boldly knock on our door and make us sit up and take notice.

Recently, I received a No – it was one of the silent varieties – I was left to read clues between text messages, body language and the like. This was not one of those No’s that made me feel relieved, it was a No that I hadn’t expected nor, at the time wanted. And there it was starring me in the face.

Have you noticed that No often dances with Yes? They are partners and tango hand-in-hand. When we say or are given a No, there is often a Yes to someone, or something nearby.

Suppose there was a garden with a lot of flowers that bloom No in rich and fragrant colors then . . .

  •  Whenever I gave or received a no, I or the one I gave the No to, would have the opportunity to plant a seed and grow something new.
  • I’d have to accept the mystery of some of those flowers that bloomed “No” and not build a story around them – accept them as they are.
  • The No’s might help me root out the real weeds and the things that don’t need my tending or need to be in my garden and I might better understand my own or other’s needs and desires.
  • I’d have as many Yes as No blooms in my garden because behind every No is a Yes waiting to bloom.

Self-leadership often stands on our ability to say No, Yes or to wait until we have more information or knowledge. It can be difficult to hear or say an unwanted No – we can feel uncomfortable.

No’s hardly seem like gifts, but I’m beginning to think they are perhaps some of the most splendid blooms in my garden – well, they are at least as splendid as the Yes’s. So here I sit with a No’s Gay (nosegay) and it’s not so bad after all.

– Mary

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– Removed and added an image, and edited for clarity. 1/2/2017

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