*Shonda Rhimes sat down with Oprah for an all-new season of OWN’s “Super Soul Sunday” to discuss her successful weight loss of 100 pounds, and how saying “yes” for an entire year to unexpected invitations helped her overcome her worse fear.
The acclaimed creator of ABC’s “Scandal” and “Grey’s Anatomy” describes herself as an introvert, opting to remain out of the public eye and focus instead on evolving her hit shows and raising her three kids. In an effort to step out of her comfort zone, Shonda’s sister challenged her to say “yes” for an entire year to the unexpected, which she chronicled in an upcoming memoir, “Year of Yes.” Rhimes said the powerful impact saying “yes” was one of most amazing decisions she has ever made, The Grio reports.
The first two invitations Shonda received and said “yes” to were; the president of her alma mater, Dartmouth College, called to see if she would deliver a commencement speech. Then, Jimmy Kimmel booked her as a guest, and as EW reports, public speaking used to rank among Rhimes’ worst fears. “My panic was always really huge,” she told EW. “I had so much social anxiety.” Year of YES helped her to get over this.
Shonda’s “Year of Yes” transformation also helped her realize that she didn’t want to get married, as she told EW:
”I was seriously dating somebody and I was like, I don’t want to do this. I guess I had been secretly feeling that way and writing it for Cristina [Yang on Grey’s Anatomy]. We’re all so conditioned to want it, I felt like there must be something wrong with me. But the minute I said it out loud to my family, it was fantastic. Now if somebody says, ‘Are you looking for that?’ I say, ‘Nope, looking for a boyfriend, not a husband.’ And there’s a freedom to that. There’s no pressure if you’re not looking for it.”
Shonda’s “Year of Yes” memoir is due in November. The new season of “Super Soul Sunday” premiers September 27, with Shonda’s episode slated to air November 15.