Title: Yes Man
Author: Danny Wallace
Genre: Non Fiction
Recently single, Danny Wallace was falling into loneliness and isolation. When a stranger on a bus advises, “Say yes more,” Wallace vows to say yes to every offer, invitation, challenge, and chance.
In Yes Man, Wallace recounts his months-long commitment to complete openness with profound insight and humbling honesty. Saying yes takes Wallace into a new plane of existence: a place where money comes as easily as it goes, nodding a lot can lead to a long weekend overseas with new friends, and romance isn’t as complicated as it seems. Yes eventually leads to the biggest question of all: “Do you, Danny Wallace, take this woman…”
Yes Man is inspiring proof that a little willingness can take anyone to the most wonderful of places.
Yes Man changed my life. Perhaps not to the extent it changed Danny Wallace’s life, but it did, nonetheless, change my life. I’m aware that’s quite a bold statement to make.
It’s hard to explain this one without getting too personal, but let’s just say it began almost exactly one year ago with me, on my sofa, in my pyjamas having not got dressed for several days. I had just about managed to function long enough to make a cup of tea for my friend who was sitting opposite me. She was there at her own insistence and against my better judgement (I didn’t want to see anyone at that time). She sat and she listened and I cried and we talked and slowly I started to feel less alone. At some point in the hours that followed, she told me to read this book.
So I did.
This book is full of silliness, dry wit and humour which is just so delectably British. I laughed, cried and cringed my way through every page of this in a matter of hours realising as I read, that beneath its unassuming veneer of a light, humorous read, was a moral of far more significance: that action is more rewarding than inaction. I recognised so much of myself in Danny’s situation at the beginning of the book and as much as the whole premise is hilarious, awkward and ridiculous, it’s fundamental message is a lesson that I think many of us could do with learning. I realised that no matter how much I felt the world was hurting me, the only way to change things was to buy back into it. The prospect was sobering and terrifying but I resolved to start saying “yes”.
A year on I have made many new and incredible friends, I have travelled to some wonderful places and had many exciting new experiences. I’ve also changed careers (this was the scariest yes, but also the best) and transformed my life into something I can be largely proud of. It’s not perfect, there are still black days on the sofa occasionally, but I have cultivated more strength and resilience in myself than I ever thought possible and I no longer allow fear to be a paralytic.
This gloriously British version of Eat, Pray, Love without any of the trite vapidity and infinitely more heart, is not a self help book but I wonder if maybe it should be. Read this book. It is honest, inspiring and terrifically amusing. And say yes more; it might just change your life.