Say, “Yes,” out loud.
Say, “Yes,” and notice how Yes feels in your body. Shout, “Yes.” Loudly. Do that a few times.
Say, “No,” out loud.
Say, “No,” and notice how No feels in your body. Scream, “No.” Project your voice. Do this over and over again.
Now, say, “Maybe.”
Repeat. Maybe? Maybe.
Pause for the truthbomb.
“Yes means yes. No means No. And Maybe means No.”
This teaching from Barbara Carrellas is with me every day now. When I first heard that Maybe means No it was in reference to consent at an Urban Tantra workshop. It turns out, though, that Yes and No and Maybe don’t just live in the realm of consent communication in tantra-land. Yes and No and Maybe are relevant in everything that we do.
Do you want to have coffee with me? Are you available to babysit on Saturday night? Is it time to book an around the world trip? Should we sign the contract? Is this a person I should let into my life intimately?
We pray and beg and wish for guidance. When that information comes, are we willing to receive the direction? The Yes / No / Maybe check in is changing the game around my ability to receive my answered prayers.
Recently I’ve experienced an onslaught of YES in my life. I’m learning what Yes feels like in my body, in my heart, and in my mind. This clarity around Yes is showing me that I’ve spent a lot of time in the past barreling through my life with my body, heart, and mind screaming NO. In hindsight I can see that so often those No people, places, and things were disguised as Maybe people, places, and things.
Maybe is a tricky little bugger. Maybe wants to convince you that if you just try harder / better / stronger / faster this can work. But here’s the thing, Maybe means No. Perhaps some other time, but not right now.
At first this information can feel truly appalling. Seeing how we’ve betrayed ourselves by agreeing to Maybe agreements can feel embarrassing, painful, and downright baffling. Such times call for more love, not less. Gentleness, space to feel the rising fear, and some good trusted advisors will be our friends on the road to Yes.
The good news is that the road to Yes is paved with relief. When we no longer do things our intuitions are saying No to (and, I’ll say it again, Maybe is a No), our lives get filled with Yes opportunities, Yes thoughts, and Yes vibrational landscapes. Practicing saying No thanks to Maybe invitations is a beautiful way to make amends to our inner children and earn back trustworthiness with ourselves as we practice living with more integrity day by day.
Like all learning, there ins’t any going back to not knowing once you know. Learning isn’t linear so it’s okay if there is forgetting and remembering about consent in our lives. But each time a check in around Yes-No-Maybe comes up in the future, you’ll have new tools, a deepening well of compassion, and more memory of how good it feels to come back into alignment with living a Yes kind of life.