THE WORLD NEEDS PEOPLE WHO HAVE COME ALIVE
In 2012 I started sharing a personal motto. To me, until then, SayYesMore was a life-affirming message, a reminder that small lifestyle changes can make a big difference and a gentle kick up the butt in those times where everything feels hopeless.
Since then SayYesMore has blossomed, not just into three words that easily slip into the daily vocabulary of positive people, but into a growing community based on helping its members redesign their lives for the better.
Following an urge to see if I could turn my Facebook followers into real people, we've held hundreds of events that encourage people to believe in their power of choice. Three annual festivals (called, cheekily, Yestival) and an ever-growing global community with over 10,000 members. We even converted a double decker bus into a community space designed to encourage people to spend more time in the countryside, at the same time as actively working towards their potential.
The community is free to anyone who is looking to make life less restricted, more enjoyable, more interesting and more memorable. The aim: to make a culture of happy, kind, yes-people normal. To help foster dreams of living and working based around passions and hobbies. To make sure we all use our time as well as possible. To take on fear and turn it into potential.
I'm lucky enough to have been born into a fairly privileged world. My parents weren't overly wealthy but my family are middle class and I hold a British passport, which makes freedom of movement incredibly easy. That said, there a huge swathe of my peers who take this 'fortune' for granted and I feel this is a really positive army waiting to happen. When folks stop complaining and consuming and focus on life's basics, they have more time to give to others. If the YesTribe has any long-term aim, for me, I hope the legacy is one of greater understanding, less waste and a fairer distribution of resources.
Do hop along to the website to find out about our ethos and ongoing projects and adventures, and please join the YesTribe on Facebook, and if you're nearby come along to our next event. Can't wait to have you as part of the family.
SAYYESMORE IN A NUTSHELL
HOW IT ALL STARTED
"I've always liked wearing a positive message, so I suppose it makes sense that this was going to happen one day.
Way back when I realised I was a no man. Life was fairly mediocre despite having most of the trappings, and it began to change when I started saying yes more.
In July 2012 I was designing a team t-shirt for my Missouri River Swimming expedition. And rather than having 'Missouri River Swimming Expedition' on the front I opted for three little words that summed up how I try to go through life.
The hundred shirts printed up for that expedition all went at the launch party. I guess you can't say no to buying a shirt which gets down to the basic nitty gritty of taking on new opportunities, the very essence of what helps us grow and develop.
Doing new things, not being afraid to fail and making the most of every day means we have to do what we love. Life should be lived with passion, and I'd like people to chase their dreams and enjoy happy, caring, brave lives. With wide smiles.
So now everyone can wear their passion. Every week we get sent photos of people on adventures, doing new things, climbing mountains, running triathlons, crossing continents, starting new businesses, fixing stuff that has been broken for years.
Make life memorable. Say YES more!"
Dave Cornthwaite, November 2012
A letter from someone who said yes.
August 2013 proved to be a life-changing month. After graduating university with a decent degree from a decent university I had completely drifted away from the things that really excited me. I had chosen a bad job, a bad lifestyle and was, quite honestly kidding myself into feeling positive when this could not be further from the truth. I was faced with a personal situation that was wearing me down and had put me in a very pent up state about life. 25 years old, I was so far from where I wanted to be and no amount of lying to myself to shake that discontent.
A phenomenal speech from Dave Cornthwaite changed all of this. His story was one that was instantly relatable, engaging and utterly inspiring. The simple message to say yes more sounds like such common sense but how many of us actually follow this? How many of us actually break outside of the path that society has planned for us?
That evening, 4 of us realised that we had a free bank holiday coming up - shall we do the 3 Peaks Challenge? Yes
About 3 hours of planning, going the wrong way, no designated driver, almost no car and we were on our way having not seen a mountain in years (aside, of course from that mountain of paper placed on our desk at 5pm so our boss can go home to his wife!)
Since the 3 Peaks, I've said yes quite a for more times:
- Athens Marathon? Yes
- Set up a business in Uganda & travel out there numerous times to set it all up? Yes
- Expand said business from UK & Uganda to the USA? Yes
- Set up a charity to disrupt the entire charity sector in the UK? Yes
- Ironman Wales having never raced a triathlon and yet to run a marathon? Yes
- Set up Uganda's first ever International Marathon? Yes
- Build a 180 bed orphanage in Masaka town taking vulnerable girls from the street to a future? Yes
- Even small things like a friend running their first 10km race and being nervous? Yes, I'll pace you
All the above in just 13 months !
Big or small - the first answer is yes, the next consideration is how to make it work - but life is so much better that way around. The act of saying yes inspires action inspite of fear, it drives progress over stagnation and in permeates through every area of my life. It's been a complete revelation, the idea is nothing new but taking action each day and reaping the benefits is something we just don't do enough.
I'm still rubbish at so many things, I still have so many days of self-doubt and pain...I'm still a long way from where I want to be - but that is because my horizons are so much greater than they were. I'm excited to start the journey towards these new adventures.
Nick Kershaw | www.impactmarathon.com | @kershaw87