Category Archives: sunday is for lovers

Don Miguel Ruiz: The Real You

Don Miguel Ruiz

“We only see what we want to see; we only hear what we want to hear. Our belief system is just like a mirror that only shows us what we believe.”

“Life is so much brighter when we focus on what truly matters.”

“Every human is an artist. And this is the main art that we have: the creation of our story.”

“Death is not the biggest fear we have; our biggest fear is taking the risk to be alive – the risk to be alive and express what we really are.”

“Just imagine becoming the way you used to be as a very young child, before you understood the meaning of any word, before opinions took over your mind. The real you is loving, joyful, and free. The real you is just like a flower, just like the wind, just like the ocean, just like the sun.”

All quotes by Don Miguel Ruiz

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Up in the Air

yountville up in the air

Hindsight is definitely 20/20.

Every so often I go through a tough phase. Times when I feel like my life doesn’t match me, where things seem unnecessarily challenging and odd fitting. Over the last six months I felt like my life was up in the air. In a way I was floating, not sure where to land, hoping I wouldn’t come crashing down or drift off to somewhere undesirable. Due to lack of gas and the passion to ignite a powerful spark, it just seemed like I was becoming more and more susceptible to life’s twists and turns. Things began to feel out of my reach, out of my control. Important things, like where to live. During that time I was looking for a rental in Northern California, and I just couldn’t find one. Nothing seemed like a match and nothing felt right. I was considering moving back to New York, and I even contacted an old friend to make possible arrangements. Until, the perfect opportunity crossed my path. On April 1st (which last last weekend — so sorry I didn’t write a blog post! for any of you that were wondering), I made my move. I moved to Yountville, California. I had no idea I would eventually move to the Napa Valley, or hear the sound of hot air balloons roaring for lift-off as my dog and I walk around the neighborhood. A whole array of new sounds, sights and smells. It’s beautiful here, and the experience is all very dream like.

From personal experience, I feel that we can never know what’s in store for us. Just as we think we have it all figured out, life is there to laugh. To present challenges. To help us grow and demand that we see differently. All we can do is be boldly ready. Every significant move in my life was a mystery. The right people, the right time, the right moment. Magic. I could have never mapped it out. The same goes for every regrettable decision I’ve ever made. I can look back and analyze everything, nitpicking what went right or wrong, and wonder how or why. But when I look back on it, when I look at it all in context, it seems so obvious. They were all important pieces to one grand puzzle. And no series of events was complete without the other. Everything was needed for my evolution and development.

As I get older I see that life is a practice of surrender. And the underpinning of that is gratitude. To be able to see everything as magic. As play. As growth. As humility. As a gift that we get to be part of. Every step is important. Everyone is important. To be boldly ready. To watch. To be moved. To be loved. It’s all very simple when we see it from a grander view. The key to that is letting go. To untether ourselves from our fears, or our need to be in control, or to have things unfold as we had planned, or to live up to an image we imagined for ourselves. Nothing is wrong with living up to our highest ideals or inherited paradigms, but at what cost?

I remember a hike I did in the Himalayas. This was years ago, in 2000. I began the journey with so many ideas, of myself and of the climb. When it was over I was nothing. Blank, empty, unsightly, and vulnerable. I was so humble and so grateful. Everything was good enough! Everything was beautiful! Everything was a gift! My feet were blistered, pus filled and swollen. I could not walk without taking every step into gentle consideration. It was also very clear to me that nor the hike or what was beyond the hike, was possible without the loving help and generosity of others.

Life is best well lived. For everyone that means something different. But I do think it takes faith in something beyond our humanness; beyond our brain, blood, flesh and bones. Death awaits each and every one of us. Death is actually quite near. And on that day, we will be humble. We will surrender, and know that we are nothing without the help of others. And that our lives are beyond our control. We can dream big and work hard and create copiously, but we still need the blessing of the Universe and everyone in it. Instead of waiting to realize this, it’s best to embrace it now. To live each day as an eye-opening piece to a magnificent puzzle. And to have fun playing the game. And to see what there is to see. To enjoy it all, even the challenging twists and turns. It’s easier said than done! Trust me, I know. I’m still ‘working’ on it. It’s all a practice. So we don’t need to worry about doing it perfectly. It’s all just an opportunity to let go. To rise up and fully live.

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Anais Nin: Love, Courage & Hustle

Anais Nin

“We are going to the moon — that is not very far. Man has so much farther to go within himself.”

“Living never wore one so much as the effort not to live.”

“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.”

“You live like this, sheltered, in a delicate world, and you believe you are living. Then you read a book… or you take a trip… and you discover that you are not living, that you are hibernating. The symptoms of hibernating are easily detectable: first, restlessness. The second symptom (when hibernating becomes dangerous and might degenerate into death): absence of pleasure. That is all. It appears like an innocuous illness. Monotony, boredom, death. Millions live like this (or die like this) without knowing it. They work in offices. They drive a car. They picnic with their families. They raise children. And then some shock treatment takes place, a person, a book, a song, and it awakens them and saves them from death. Some never awaken.”

“Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.”

“Age does not protect you from love. But love, to some extent, protects you from age.”

“We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.”

“When you make a world tolerable for yourself, you make a world tolerable for others.”

“Good things happen to those who hustle.”

All quotes by Anais Nin

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Marcus Aurelius: Death, Power & Beauty

Marcus Aurelius quotes

“The sexual embrace can only be compared with music and with prayer.”

“Death smiles at us all; all we can do is smile back.”

“The soul becomes dyed with the color of its thoughts.”

“Remember that very little is needed to make a happy life.”

“Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.”

“The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts.”

“It is not death that a man should fear, but he should fear never beginning to live.”

“Don’t go on discussing what a good person should be. Just be one.”

“If you are distressed by anything external, the pain is not due to the thing itself, but to your estimate of it; and this you have the power to revoke at any moment.”

“Everything that happens happens as it should, and if you observe carefully, you will find this to be so.”

Dwell on the beauty of life. Watch the stars, and see yourself running with them.”

“Do every act of your life as though it were the very last act of your life.”

All quotes by Marcus Aurelius

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Cornel West & Existentialism

Cornel West Existentialism

Existentialism

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Friends with Benefits

Good Bacteria and Bad Bacteria, enteric bacteria, Intestinal flora, Gut flora, probiotics, image illustration

There is so much I want to say on this topic! But it’s too much to put into words right now. All I will say is, please choose wisely and take good care of your friendly bacteria. It does so much for you, much more than you probably know.

Today I listened to two interviews with Dr. Robynne Chutkan. Both were wonderful! I highly recommend them. One is a Rich Roll interview (‘Live Dirty, Eat Clean’ podcast), and the other is an Abel James video I will embed below. Do yourself a super-duper-massive favor and see/listen to what Dr. Robynne Chutkan has to say. She is very knowledgable and she has such a gentle, yet effective way of expressing her findings/views.

I was talking to my brother the other day, and he asked me what I eat/drink that I feel the most benefit from. Without a doubt I told him that when I consume a really good probiotic food/drink/supplement, I feel amazing! I immediately feel a big difference (more energy, more happiness, better poops, better sleep, better skin, better thinking, better moods, etc.)

As I get older I feel myself drifting away from spending and leaning towards investing. What we do with our body, money, energy, thoughts and time is either an investment or a waste that creates future debt/obligation. I want to invest in a better me living a better life, and in order to do that I have to love myself and choose wisely. And since approximately 90 percent of the cells in my body are bacterial… Well, it might be best to give my friendly bacteria a huge portion of my respect, love, attention and appreciation. If I expect them to take care of me, I should at least help them thrive and survive — they are me after all!

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School of Greatness

lewis howes

lewis howes

Who doesn’t love Lewis Howes? He’s got to be the cutest and sweetest guy on television. Well, not quite television, but I consider Youtube my TV. As I mentioned before, I’m a fan of a few shows on Youtube. I gravitate towards educational videos and positive shows that feature inspirational people. So of course I stumbled upon Lewis Howes’ show called School of Greatness. (Which is also a podcast on iTunes and a book available on Amazon.) There are many great episodes that I could share with you, but I’ll post a few that I really enjoyed.

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