Before I embarked on an epic sister’s trip to Florence last year, I made sure to learn what I thought was the most vital Italian phrase: “vino rosso, per favore.” In fact, the thing that I uttered the most was “perché no?” which means “why not?” Sure, this was often in response to the waiter’s inquiring question, “un altro vino rosso?”, but I found that things which I normally would have second guessed were incredibly easy to respond “perché no?” to.
I stopped overanalyzing every small detail, resisted debilitating myself with doubt, and actually started living.
Take an impromptu bus ride to Siena? Perché no?
Practice my broken Italian despite judgmental looks? Perché no?
Order aglio olio e pepperoncini for the third night in a row because it’s just that damn good? Perché no?
It was likely a combination of the laid-back Italian attitude and the fact that I was on vacation with my favorite people in the world, but I was grateful for whatever created this spensierata Saleema. Unfortunately, just as the last delicious drop of cappuccino wore off, so did my confidence. “It must have been my vacation mindset,” I sighed as I settled back into my old life.
Recently, however, “perché no?” has found its way back into my vocabulary. With so much uncertainty and injustice in the world, each day and every single action is that much more valuable. Life is too short not to respond “perché no?” when an opportunity comes your way. I’m not suggesting that you dive into every decision without weighing the risks or consequences (the mantra is “perché no?” not “me ne fotto”), but instead, stop getting in the way of living your truth.
Stand up for what you believe in? Perché no?
Pursue your dream career? Perché no?
Live each day with intention? Perché no?
If your answer to a question is “no,” ask yourself perché?
What’s holding you back?