Becoming more YES—ISH

I have fallen in love with the idea of ISH.

You know ISH. It means “sort of”.

We will see you around 5:00 – ISH.

Saying that on the front end of an invitation, no one will expect you to be on time. “5:00 sharp” is off the table completely. You won’t have to walk in the door, being considered late again. No more lame excuses about traffic.

And yet, let me be clear….there are some things that are never ISH-able.

Like: Your flight leaves at 2:38pm

So this idea of ISH-ing also allows us to start making a nice distinction between the things that we can allow ourselves some breathing room on and those others where we must tow the line. The great thing about ISH-ing is that it can make us more discerning about the fact that we don’t need to approach everything in life as if its urgent. Much less hair on fire that way.

ISH-ing allows you to give yourself some socially graceful soft edges. Most people don’t even seem to be annoyed by being ISH-ed.

ISH-ing gives us some much needed freedom from the promise of a perfect performance.

ISH-ing makes us seem more human. An example is when you invite a friend for lunch or coffee….”see you around 10:00 ISH”….don’t you hear/feel a sigh of relief on the other end? Even in an email or text, that friendly permission slip to slide a bit feels like a little spritz of kindness, refreshing a frazzled face.

As we all know, perfectionists would never be ISH-ers.

And, if you are someone who gets in trouble by saying YES, much too much, then take heart. ISH-ing is a way to become more self-ISH, in the nicest way.

Your all-too-automatic “YES, ABSOLUTELY’s” can turn into “YES, SORT OF’s“…..making others less likely to count on you and you, less likely to beat yourself up when your original eager “YES”, turns into the inevitable “oh-my-God-what-was-I-thinking-YES.”

Try it. I’m really not kidding. A bit more ISH in your life may be a simple, yet powerful stepping stone toward greater self-care. And, it just might reduce that state of perpetual overwhelm you find yourself trying to manage every day.

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