Yes or No? How About Maybe?

OpenField

Nothing feels freer or creates more potential for opportunity than being able to say “maybe.”

A “yes or no” can create limitations. A hesitant “yes” can predetermine an outcome. A sudden “no” can limit an outcome. A confident “maybe” allows for possibilities better than we could imagine.

When I was in school, “yes or no” tests made me feel fenced in by having to check just one box. Often I could come up with “maybe” as an answer.

Essay questions were my favorite. Outside the limits of the boxes of “yes or no”, I felt free in the open space of a blank piece of paper. There, the vast horizon of the “maybe” could be explored

Whether it’s on a test or in a real-life situation, sometimes “maybe” is the right answer.

Life is uncertain. Learning to embrace, rather than evade, the unknown allows for exploration and expansion of personal freedom. Feeling free to say “maybe” can create adventure and opportunity in life.

I’ve found an answer of “maybe” jumps the fences that the mind builds around myself or another person — fences of fear, expectation and judgment.

“Maybe” brings me to the edge of uncertainty and the realm of the unknown.

We tend to think of the unknown in the negative and a place of being trapped. However, the unknown can be opportunity for great potential and a space of sweet personal freedom.

Regarding intimate relationships, we often want the “yes or no”, because it makes us feel secure. We believe it creates stability. Sometimes in certain cases, it does.

However, most times relationships do not fit in a “yes or no box.” Test answers, cereal, and tissues fit in boxes. Answers to life questions, especially those regarding intimate relationships, require allowing for the space of a “maybe”.

At some point during the course of an intimate relationship, we have all experienced the “maybe”.

I recently did and was reminded how life, and especially an intimate relationship, is best enjoyed when we jump the fences of the mind and wander and wonder in the open field of the heart.

There is a special guy in my life who has the gift of giving me karmic kicks in the behind without leaving a boot print.

During a conversation, I posed a question and then asked for a “yes or no” reply. I totally tried to corral him into an answer. He paused for a moment, and then replied, “Maybe”.

I wanted a definitive answer, the security of a “yes or no.” He answered my question with a question. I thought, he can’t answer with a “maybe.”

Through the grace of my breath, which I’ve learned to rely on in moments when I realize my mind is attempting to hijack my heart, I exhaled and paused.

In the space of the pause, he offered a hug. In the embrace of his arms, he ushered me to the seat of my soul and I became free of the mind’s gasping and grasping. I was in that “wide open country that I love” – the heart space.

I then remembered, “maybe” is a totally acceptable answer. “Maybe” is a choice. “Maybe” opens possibilities the fenced-in fearful mind could never imagine.

Saying “maybe” is a way of living without fears and limits. No fears of how someone else will react. No limitations as to expectations or judgments we place on our self or another.

Saying “maybe” allows us to explore the space in any situation. Outside the fences of the mind’s “yes or no”, the spirit rides free on the frontier of possibility and into the infinite horizon of the “maybe.”

How to Jump the Fences of the Mind

1. Practice heart-opening yoga poses. By shifting awareness to the heart, poses like the warrior variations help free me from the demands and commands of the ego mind. In surrendering warrior, I encourage myself to surrender a worry, thereby escaping being a P.O.W. – a prisoner of worry.

2. Explore nature! Walk in an open field. Sit outside at night and gaze at the vast starlit sky. There’s nothing like the wide-open landscape of nature to remind me of life’s unlimited divine creative potential.

3. Muster the courage to say “maybe”. “Maybe” is not a wishy-washy response when it comes from one’s intuition and heart. When a relationship is rooted in mutual respect, a “maybe” won’t cause the heart to shut down.

4. On full volume, sing along with Willie Nelson or David Byrne to “Don’t Fence Me In”. When I feel boxed in by a job, relationship, or an old thought pattern, I sing this classic cowboy ballad. It reminds me to jump the fences of my mind, and roam free into the open field of the heart.

Don’t Fence Me In

Oh give me the land, lots of land under starry skies above
Don’t fence me in
Let me ride through the wide open country that I love
Don’t fence me in

Let me be by myself in the evening breeze
Listen to the murmur of the cottonwood trees
Send me off forever but I ask you please
Don’t fence me in

Just turn me loose
Let me straddle my old saddle underneath the Western skies
On my Cayuse
Let me wander over yonder ’til I see the mountains rise

I want to ride to the ridge where the West commences
Gaze about the moon until I lose my senses
Can’t look at hovels and I can’t stand fences
Don’t fence me in

By Robert Fletcher and Cole Porter

When we learn to jump the fences of the fearful mind, we are free to experience the wide-open country of the heart –- the seat of the soul.

Saddled in the seat of the soul, we are free to ride to the ridge where the “yes or no” opens to the vast horizon of the “maybe”.

Here’s to allowing for the “maybe” — the wild frontier beyond the hovels and fences of the “yes or no” mind and the space of unlimited divine creative potential.

Yeehaw! And giddy up!

About the Author

author image

Kellen Brugman is a certified yoga teacher, Ayurvedic lifestyle counselor, and freelance writer based in Santa Barbara, California. By combining the healing benefits of yoga, Ayurveda, and writing, she helps others bring balance and harmony to their body, mind, and life. Whether it's providing inspiration in a yoga class or retreat, encouragement in lifestyle consults, or humor on a blog post, Kellen seeks to provide folks the space to transform their lives and discover the divine peace within. She believes life is an amazing adventure, filled with abundance and joy, when we are realizing our greatest potential in terms of our health and creativity.

Read more from Kellen Brugman

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