About This Book

Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Power of Yes! celebrates the empowerment we feel when we say "Yes!" to something that challenges us. Change your life for the better by doing the things that scare you. These 101 true, revealing stories will help you do just that.

In a world where "why" is too often asked and "no" is too often an answer, this book encourages us to ask "why not" and celebrates the tremendous power in saying "Yes!" The authors of these 101 stories explain how saying "Yes!" changed their lives for the better. Whether it's something little, like trying a new food or something big, like jumping out an airplane, you'll be ready to shake up your own life after you read about their experiences.

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Five ways to broaden your world by using the power of yes

Inspired by Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Power of Yes! by Amy Newmark

Whether it’s the little things, like trying new foods, or the big things, like flying to a faraway country, we feel empowered and excited when we do things that challenge us. The 101 stories in Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Power of Yes! will motivate you to seek new experiences, overcome your fears, and broaden your world. Here are five ways that you can broaden your world and energize your life by saying "yes":

  1. Make a policy to say yes to new things. Victoria Otto Franzese was turning 50 and she wanted to reclaim the excitement of her youth. So she resolved to do something new every single day, for 365 days. It wasn’t always easy, and sometimes she’d be wracking her brain at 11:45 p.m. to find her new thing for the day. But she did it, trying activities as small as doing a sudoku puzzle, and as big as going dog sledding. She even participated in a Guinness world record event, joining a crowd of people jumping on mini trampolines. Victoria says, "At 50, my life was lush and full of promise. I could continue to grow, stretch my wings, and learn more every day for the rest of my life."
  2. Learn to embrace change in your life. Sara Etgen-Baker loved her antique "secretary desk." It was where she did all her writing and she was used to it. But it was so small that when she needed to refer to files and books as she wrote, they had to be scattered on the floor around her. When she and her husband moved into a larger home, he suggested she get a new, larger desk. He said her little desk was holding her back in her writing career. Sara resisted, until she finally realized that he was right. She had been afraid to go for it, to expand her writing. She ordered the new desk, saying that a "bigger desk symbolized bigger projects, bigger possibilities, more challenging contests, stepping out on faith, and leaving my comfort zone."
  3. Reach out and make connections with new people. With three kids under age five, and a new home in a new community, Kate Lemery was a busy stay-at-home mom. But she was lonely. She decided to become a room parent in her oldest child’s kindergarten class. She also signed him up for soccer. But she still wasn’t making any friends in her new town. Then an old friend suggested she throw a party for all those moms she didn’t know. Kate was hesitant, but she sent out the invitations, and now she has hosted several of these "mommy mixers" and finds herself the "glue" that brings the mothers in her community together.
  4. Do something that frightens you. A long line of people was building up behind Linda Holland Rathkopf as she desperately tried to arrange a "rescue" from the zip-lining platform. The attendant had just told her that she needed to complete eight more runs of the zip-lining adventure. She had managed the first and thought she was done. But she hadn’t understood that the only way to get back to her starting point was to zip across all nine of the cables that stretched from platform to platform over the Costa Rican rainforest. Finally, she relented, and she discovered that with each subsequent run her anxiety lessened and she was able to keep her eyes open and enjoy the beautiful flora and fauna. She says, "I had stepped out of my comfort zone and into a wonderland." And she admits that she completed her adventure "exhilarated" and didn’t want it to end.
  5. Reinvent yourself if that’s what will make you happy. Doug Sletten had a family and a good job as a teacher. He had paid off his student loans and he and his wife had bought their first house. But he had always wanted to be a lawyer. Finally, he talked to his normally staid, conservative father about his secret dream, and said that he would be well into his thirties by the time he finished law school. His father simply said, "How old would you be in four years if you didn’t follow your dream?" That was it. Doug’s wife agreed and he went on to spend what he called "three of the most grueling years of my life." Doug says, "I practiced law for twenty-five years, and I was always grateful that my father and my family supported my decision to uproot our lives and try something completely different."
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