I must admit that the thoughts I share today are not my own, but are inspired by Gideon Amichay. Gideon is the chief creative officer at one of Israel’s largest marketing agencies, but prior to his current job, he lived in New York. He moved to New York with one goal – to have one of his cartoons published in the New Yorker. Recently, I was moved when I heard a Tedx talk given by Gideon (got to love TED!) entitled “No, No, No, No, No, No, Yes.”
Here is the AMAZING talk:
Gideon spoke of his perseverance and journey through hundreds, and even over a thousand rejections from the New Yorker magazine until his cartoons were eventually accepted and published. His talk is not about the end result of his meeting his goal, but about perseverance. He talks about the fact that “no” has a comma after it, NOT a period – that as we receive “nos” in life we can remember that if we continue to follow our dreams and set our goals we will eventually receive that “yes”.
I have certainly seen this in my own life. 12 years ago when I was beginning the adoption process of my youngest (she is the youngest, but first adopted) I was living overseas. The country I was living in was not known for being as safe as the USA. As such, US agencies were hesitant to assist me in adopting until I was living in the USA again. As my career had me overseas for an indefinite time span, I did not want to wait. It took me THREE YEARS and dozens of agencies before I finally got the golden answer, “oh yes, we just helped a couple in Kuwait adopt, so there will be no problem helping you.” I was thrilled. I started the process and 14 months later my daughter came home. Finding an agency was a horrific struggle, and waiting three years for someone to say “yes” was incredibly discouraging. At times I even questioned whether I was really supposed to be a mother, as all adoption doors were slammed shut. But eventually I found that agency and the door opened. The process was fairly smooth (as smooth as international adoption can be) from there. When my daughter was placed in my arms, over 8 years ago, something powerful occurred to me. Had I received a “yes” when I wanted it – then my daughter would not be with me. She was not even born when I started the process – in fact, she was born shortly after I found the agency that said “yes”. As I cannot begin to imagine my life without her, I look back with gratitude that so many agencies said “no” – as it created the opportunity to lead me to the daughter I have today.
Gideon spoke eloquently (and humorously) about our need to keep the larger picture in mind, and our need to understand that our nos really do not have periods after them, they do have those commas and we can choose to continue to persevere until we find our “yes”.
Click HERE to go to Gideon’s website.
Click HERE to see his drawings that were bought by the New Yorker, his dream come true! (He also has other great drawings on his page!)
Today, 49 days ’til 40, I am thankful to have had the opportunity to hear Gideon speak – what an important message for us all to hear. May we all remember that the nos in our lives have commas after them, not periods – and may that encourage us as we persevere.