I'm really comfortable in the beautiful box of life that surrounds me. I enjoy being no place more than home, whether that's in California or Maui. My favorite gathering spaces for friends and family are the dinner table, the front porch and the kitchen. And reading all day makes me joyously content.

So why would I want to step out of my intentionally created and deeply satisfying comfort zone?

Until recently, I'd have said, "Trust me, I wouldn't!" But a conversation with Shonda Rhimes for Super Soul Sunday has broadened my perspective.

After years of rarely venturing beyond her familiar realms of work and family, the self-proclaimed introvert—and mastermind überproducer of the hit TV shows Grey's Anatomy, Scandal, How to Get Away with Murder and now the highly anticipated thriller The Catch—made a decision to say yes to every invitation for one year.

Result number one: Shonda's first book, Year of Yes.

Result number two (the way more important one!): pure transformation.

Shonda neither looks nor is the same as she was a year ago. She's lost 110 pounds. She's so much more engaged. As her book chronicles, saying yes to heretofore anxiety-making experiences like speeches, parties and media appearances opened up the world to her.

Blowing out your comfort zone can be life changing.

This was my fourth interview with Shonda—and the first where I felt like she was fully present, not guarded or distant. She told me she barely remembers our previous encounters because she was overcome with white-hot fear. Anxiety blurred the whole experience.

This time, when we finished the interview, she even said yes to lunch.

Yes for a year? I'm not ready to commit so far down the road. But I'm open to today. And tomorrow. And then...who's to say? Before you know it, I might be taking tango lessons with Robert Duvall.


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