A Review of Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes

Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes

About Year of Yes

As a self-described introvert with three hit television shows and three kids at home, Shonda Rhimes had plenty of reason to say no. Then came Thanks-giving 2013 when Shonda’s sister Delorse muttered six little words at her: You never say yes to anything.

Those six words became a wakeup call- and a challenge. She committed, for a year to say Yes. First came the terrifying public Yeses- delivering the commencement address at Dartmouth, and appearing on Jimmy Kimmel Live; then came the excruciating private Yeses- reevaluating here health, and confronting the damaging relationships in her life head on. But perhaps most difficult and meaningful of all were the Yeses that required her to explore, empower, and applaud and lover truest self.


This is a personal memoir of a talented Television producer called Shonda Rhimes. She has produced the TV shows. The first one is Greys Anatomy which is a personal favorite but I failed to catch up. I stopped watching it at season thirteen. Scandal is a second TV show that she has created. I have also watched it but stopped at season 4, this relationship between Olivia Pope and the President was now tiring. And finally her third TV show, How to get away with murder. I have not had a chance to watch this one, I know I will get around to it at some point.

The Year of Yes gives us an in depth look at a woman who tries to balance her career, her personal life which includes her motherhood journey and learning to say YES. Shonda recounts her personal achievements, failures, personal and professional relationships that she has encountered over the years. This book had both its highs and lows. It was well written with the writer recounting on how she would take a year just to say yes to everything she was asked to do. I love that the book is relatable to women of all ages. The challenges she faces are challenges that I face as a professional woman trying to juggle different aspects of my life.

As an inspirational memoir, this book works for anyone who wants to unlearn, challenge themselves to do something they would not usually do. I loved the writing style, it was conversational, and it kept me engaged.  I am beginning to see a similarity with the memoirs that I have read so far. I had the same experience reading Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. I felt like I was with a friend seated down somewhere and she was recounting her life story to me.

I could relate to most of her experiences especially in regard to motherhood and her balance between career and taking care of children.  Quite an inspiring book where I came to the realization that children are children once and if you miss those moments you may never get to experience them again.

If you loved Greys Anatomy, you would totally related to her passion for writing the series and how she loved the character – Christina Yang. Very motivating in learning to do what you love and to do it with passion. The Year of Yes according to Shonda Rhimes changed her outlook and attitude towards life. She started experimenting more, she learnt who to add and who not to add to her inner circle. She learnt who was taking advantage of her friendship.

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