How to get what you want by not being an asshole

I know a girl who is really pretty and smart but not very happy. She spends so much time on social media and compares her life to the ones around her and feels so awful about herself that she gets depressed and feels like her life is crap.

Social media is great but it really has the potential to make people feel like shit, only if the source of your happiness comes from having things outside yourself and not being grateful for what you have.

That’s why not being an asshole is the key to happiness and getting what you want.

This girl is like many, who doesn’t really live for others. She isn’t very giving yet expects the world to fall at her feet.

If we are selfish and unkind assholes and don’t care about others, the universe will respond accordingly and make life a living hell because that’s all you had to give was nothing! So you will get nothing but more lack. If you put out complaints about lack, you will continue to experience lack because the universe thinks you like to lack!

However, the solution is simple: STOP BEING AN ASSHOLE!

Look outside yourself at the world that needs you to stop complaining and lacking when it really needs you to be giving and receiving love!

Here are a few steps to transition out of being an asshole:

1. Stop criticizing others 

A.k.a letting things go. Whether you like it or not, whatever you give your energy to, will grow, just like the sun shines down on unwanted weeds just as evenly as it does to the plants you wish to grow. Criticizing excessively is like a disease. It is perfectionism. It stops people from being comfortable with just being themselves. It is like whining constantly on a long road trip. It creates insecurity and annoyance. Bottom line: everyone is different and will do things in their own time, how they do them. Learn to love and accept people just the way they are. Accept situations just the way they are unless they are intensely harmful, and you have to learn that you can’t change people, you can simply move away from the energy that brings you down. You don’t have to criticize the entire way. You can let go, let flow. 

2. Be grateful

This might sound redundant or like something you’ve heard way too much at Thanksgiving time, but it’s just truly power. This is actually key to stopping critical thoughts in their tracks. This is how you learn to love your life by appreciating what you have. If you always wish you had something else, the cycle will simply not end and there will be always something that makes you feel lacking. You already have so much. Open your eyes, breathe that air in your lungs, hug someone in your life who has given you something. It is a small start, but still a beginning.  

3. Do something for someone else/volunteer

Understanding other people is the best way to humanize yourself again and break the asshole shell. Nobody is asking you to go out and join the Peacecorps or change an elderly person’s diaper here. It could be as simple as making your loved one a cup of tea, taking the time to listen to someone who just wants to vent (without judging), or bagging your own groceries in the store (because the cashier looks tired and you can definitely do this on your own). Giving to others spreads good karma that will return to you one day. 

4. Get your head out of the clouds

Know that what people post online is their best foot forward. Most people have spent hours upon hours editing their content and social media is not necessarily representative of a person’s ugly truth. Social media is all about marketing and selling, so next time you see someone’s personal social media account that isn’t selling a specific product, what are they trying to sell to you? They are selling you happiness. If you want to constantly buy into other people’s idea of happiness without making your own, then you are screwed. Make your own happiness, so that you don’t have to buy into someone elses’ idea of happiness. When you view other people’s products next time, they won’t look so awful to you.

5. Check yourself

     Before you wreck yo’self. You are a friggin human being just like everyone else. Even if you were a ruler, you’d want people to treat you with adoration that you earned, don’t you? Otherwise it’s cheating and fake. The best rulers were adored because they showed people they actually cared and could get on their level. If you have a need to place yourself on a pedestal and belittle those around you, where did that come from? Do you not feel respected in your own life? If not, then start respecting others to get respect. Humanize yourself! before you wreck yourself. 

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Mourning fries to help with loss of loved one

A few months ago, a dear friend of mine passed away. The heartbreak is still very real. This was the first person I lost whom I loved deeply outside of my blood family. He was my chosen family, my heart, my soul.

The night I found out, I had just got out of work. I cried nonstop the entire night and knew I needed something to heal me temporarily. I needed something….

So I came up with this recipe.

I call it “Rickey’s mourning fries.”

The act of chopping took my mind off him. Frying transformed a basic potato into edible goodness.

Carbs are a source of comfort and the potato isn’t so evil like people think. People go out and do so much worse to cope with loss like take drugs, drink, or take it out on others. In eating a potato, you may be ingesting extra carbs, but know that you just have to go outside and walk for an extra 30 minutes and walking can be meditative and healing so no harm no foul. Besides, eating a potato is not the end of the world, especially when you feel like you’ve lost the world a.k.a your best friend. 

This recipe includes a few potatoes, a little salt and a pepper, a little coconut oil. That’s it. Basic. Like Rickey. 

Ingredients:

Potatoes (2-3 large russet)

1 tbs coconut oil

sea salt

black pepper

Directions:

Chop the potatoes into wedges. Heat coconut oil in a large skillet. Toss potatoes in the pan and make sure they get coated in the coconut oil. Let it sit for a bit and then toss again, making sure the potatoes don’t stick to the pan too much. 

Cover potatoes and let the steam help them cook. Toss periodically until all sides of the potatoes have been browned. 

Place potatoes onto a plate and season with salt and pepper.

I like mine with a little veganaise because deep down I must be European. 

Enjoy the comfort of homemade fries and if you feel guilty for eating carbs, go out and walk for 35-40 minutes and use the time to meditate, pray, unite with the universe’s goodness. We may lose people we love but it’s only from this plane. Somewhere they are serving as angels. The abrupt departure only means they were urgently needed elsewhere. 

Ingesting a little carbs for comfort is grounding.  Avoiding emotions by taking pills is not. Gorging on food is not recommended either. This is about wading through our toughest moments, knowing that we will get through it, with a lot of love, a lot of forgiveness and understanding, and a little plate of fries. 

What we can learn from Leos

I love Leos.  I would probably take a bullet for one of my Leo friends because I know they would do the same for me. They have been the greatest friends to me and recently I had an epiphany about why I love Leos so much and what I can learn from them. 

1. Pride/Self Esteem

Some people might look at a Leo and say, that guy/girl is cocky as hell. Well, I think anyone who thinks that about another person hasn’t allowed their own selves to be the magnificent, unique, beautiful creature that they are, so they feel the need to criticize others who don’t have a problem being exactly themselves. Leos do not have a problem with being their own magnificent, unique, beautiful selves because they love to shine. They love being different, the center of attention. I don’t know about you, but I love to see a person being their wild, crazy, different, inspirational self. I love difference. I love boldness. We can learn a lot from bold Leos. Yea, they have a lot of pride, but that’s another word for self esteem, a necessary tool we all need to have under our belt. Having pride/self esteem means we believe in ourselves and we are great just as we are.

Having pride/self esteem also means we don’t accept crap from others. We know how great we are and anyone who treats us less than that can hit the damn road.

2. On your own time

So if you have more than one Leo in your life, you many know that they are notorious for being late! Well, they usually like getting gussied up even if it’s just to go out for a coffee or movie. This means that they are often spending more time getting ready than most. Annoying yea, but that means that they value their appearance and you must make an appointment with them. You can’t just show up unannounced or expect them to drop everything for you. They value their time, as we all should. We have priorities. They are great at being selfish and doing things on their own time. This can be perceived as negative by many and it is a bit, but it’s great to also value your own time, knowing that what you are doing is important and if anyone wants a piece of your time, they need to set a date/time, well in advance. Nobody needs to expect that anyone drop their lives for another person. Now, that’s selfish and disrespectful. Watch a Leo. They will not drop anything for you. They’ll fit you in when they can and when you can. No walk-ins here. Not for their services!

3. Loyalty/Respect

 

My two best friends are Leos. One I have been friends with since I was in high school. The other used to be my boyfriend but we decided to stay friends because we really love each other, just not being in a relationship with one another. Point is, they are ride or die friends that I can count on for anything. They are incredibly loyal, a fixed sign, so that means they are definitely more stable as they concentrate energy and solidify ideas.

Aside from loyalty, there is respect. Because a Leo values his/her time so much, if they are going to spend their time with you, you better believe that they are going to make it special, meaningful. Placing value on people means showing them respect and dignity. When you treat others that way, it just makes them want to show you the same.

 

4. Positive

A Leo is a very positive person. They have energy for days and are always looking on the bright side of things. They like success and want to see others succeed as well. Being positive means attracting more positivity into your life.

5. Passionate

Leos really do value their time, so if they are going to spend time with anyone or doing anything in particular, you better believe they are going to make it worthwhile. So that means that anything they do is done with passion,  Anyone they love, they love with passion. They bring a certain excitement, vigor, with a clear set goal in mind. This is a great way to live your life. With this mindset and value system, anything you want to accomplish will get done and done well.

I love Leos, as you can see, because they have taught me so much about how to be a good, kind person, to defend their friends, lovers, and families. A lion or lioness can be intimidating to some, but it’s like having a ferocious, wild animal as your friend or lover, holding you in highest regard, protecting you from predators in this jungle we live in. I don’t know about you, but I think that’s pretty dang awesome and I have learned to be more bold and loyal from my Leo friends more than any of my others.

 

5 ways to Compost emotions

In the spirit of cleansing out/cleaning for the new year, I went through my internet favorites bar, deciding what I was still interested in, had done or already read, and I came across this article “How to grieve, rage, and move on,” by Dr. Christiane Northrup about healing from our drama from the past. We always hear that phrase, let it go, move on, but we all know it’s much easier said than done. Well, this article was very informative. It actually provided some steps to moving on and dealing with our emotions.

What I mainly took away from this article was that everyone has crap they have to deal with in life, but you can choose to use your crap for good and help new things grow/develop. That’s the basic gist of composting. You take scraps and old food that you aren’t going to use and put it in a big bin/container with water, dried up leaves or paper, and air flow. Months later, you have fresh, enriched soil that you can use in your garden to make your new plants grow. It hadn’t occurred to me until today that this idea of composting can totally be applied to our emotions/ideas as well.

I’m a huge fan of recycling/composting. I think it’s great to be able to use our trash. What an amazing thing to be able to  apply the composting process with our old crappy memories, emotions, ideas!

We don’t keep trash in our houses, so why do we hang onto old emotions  in our mind’s house?  Just like trash, old emotions probably smell like hardcore shit and are rotting inside of us unnecessarily. What loves shit? Flies, bugs, that create worms, maggots, disgusting creatures that love to feed off of our old crappy emotions/ideas/baggage/pain, you name it from the past.

This became one of my goals for the new year, to compost my old ideas/emotions and get them out of my house/body/mind and put them in a place where they can be re-used rather than stored in my body or mind’s house.

What are ways we can compost our old ideas?

  1. Create.  I’ve done this a few times to deal with pain. I put traumatic experiences in my stories. I’ve had some crazy things happen to me, so what better way to re-purpose this than to put the drama into a fiction story. Hey, it has another life now and it’s no longer just part of my secret dramatic history. It can serve as entertainment or even a lesson for someone else to learn from my mistakes. Point is, it no longer just lives in me. It’s somewhere else.
  2. Exercise. Ever feel like punching/kicking something because you’re mad? Well, take up kickboxing or invest in a punching bag. This rage can help you get into shape. Don’t let it stay in your body.
  3. Give/Help. Don’t know what to do? Think about other people who have way less than you do. If you aren’t on the street, you have a lot. There’s nothing more humbling than volunteering your time to give/help someone who needs it by buying someone a meal, helping ESL learners learn to read, volunteering at a soup kitchen or even just donating your old stuff to Goodwill or letting someone crash on your couch. Giving is never unnoticed by the universe. We never lose anything we give away for free. It’ll come back to us in another way whether it means we’ve learned to let go or gave someone much needed warmth in the form of a coat or pair of shoes.
  4. Gratitude. Easy way to put you in your place and ground you. There are so many things we take for granted like the ability to breathe, have a roof over our heads, shoes on our feet, all our limbs, a job, a family, 20/20 vision, education, you name it. Make a list of five things you are grateful for every morning before you get out of bed. It’ll definitely change your perspective.
  5. Learn something new/be better. We aren’t defined by our past. We can definitely choose to be better. To learn alternative methods to healing and living a better life than maybe our parents did or those around us. We can always pull out old, rotting ideas that don’t serve us. Learning does this. We replace old ideas with new ones that are better, that feed us and others. This concept we learn easily in gardening. Maybe you choose to learn about composting. What could be greater and more symbolic than to actually understand the traditional idea of composting? You can literally see the process happening with old food and leaves/grass from your house. If you don’t have room for that in your own living space, it’s definitely beneficial to learn how to do this somewhere else such as volunteering in a community garden or even just researching online. Gardening is a gift. It shows us so much about the cycle of life and how anything in nature grows. It’s the same for us. We aren’t some mysterious being that is above nature. We require nearly the same things plants need to grow/thrive. Understanding this is life changing. I invite you to make the time for this.

 

 

 

Love is making sweet harmony

This above photo is everything I know love is. The guy sits with his back pressed against this girl, so close, just enough to get the job done and that’s play a guitar together. To teach, to learn, requires openness, working together for growth, for one common goal and that’s to make sweet harmony. When you have found such a thing, a person to make music with, you may never want to let them go.

There’s nothing wrong with wanting to be with someone all the time. Key word is wanting. There is no freedom without boundaries, especially in love. Not being with your special person all the time is essential but that doesn’t mean you can’t long for their presence.

When you find yourself maybe not really caring or wanting to be with that person all the time, then maybe it’s really not love.

Love is loving to look into your special person’s eyes. Not wanting to turn away ever.  Love is knowing that they find you to be the most special person in the world. Love is accepting the imperfections of another. Not needing to fix them but accepting them and finding perfection in their imperfection. Love is always wanting to support their dreams, providing distance when necessary but always an incessant, burning devotion. Openness. Complete dedication to that which is special, the thing that pulls people to each other in the middle of the night. Sharing honesty. Not wanting to be away. Not needing to be drunk. Not needing to hug others, kiss others, sleep with others. No one comes close. No one gets it like you two do.

Love is wanting your special person to be better and healthy so you two can stay alive long together to make creations, children, be grandparents, supporters of future generations, the backbone of a family. A sacred tree that is strong and special when two creatures in nature cross-pollinate.

Cross-pollination is love. Alone, we can’t achieve such miracles. When you know you can cross-pollinate with another, you simply must have to. You simply must defend this ability given by the universe. It’s your duty to defend this love.

Love is never letting go when it’s hard, only when necessary for growth. Love is knowing when you are wrong and sometimes letting the other person be right when they are not just to humor them for a few hours.

That’s the kind of love I used to believe in but let selfish people convince me wasn’t right. They were wrong.

 

 

What we do with our hands

So the other day I was looking at my instagram and saw this post by one of my favorite people, Julien Kang, an inspirational mma fighter/actor/model who also happens to be very handsome 🙂 . He listed the hashtag, “realman” so I checked it out and saw all these cool posts about what some people think it means to be a “real man.” I really like this one…

“If your boyfriend’s hands don’t look like this, you’ve got a girlfriend.”

I know it was sexist and grammatically incorrect (if you look at the link),but it really got me to think about hands and the different ways each of us uses them.

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I work in community gardens, so most of the time, my hands are dirty. I often think about prehistoric times, how we used to spend our time gardening and getting/growing our food, then eating it. We were way more physical then. Growing/gathering food was our work. We didn’t spend our time thinking about exercise or trying to fit it into our day because our day consisted of laborious activities all around survival and eating food was the reward, the end game. Now, we don’t do that because most of us don’t have to grow our own food or kill wild animals and even prepare our own food. This very simple fact has changed the way we use our hands.

So many of us now sit at desks and type away at computers and phones, pads, whatever. I was super resistant to this change in society for so long because I didn’t like that people are now so dependent on technology for everything and it has contributed to so many health problems all stemming from the fact that we just aren’t as active as we used to be and need to be. After starting a social media internship with a very cool, hip, young lady, I’m coming out of the prehistoric ages and have realized just how essential it is to roll with the times. Still, we must be aware of how we use or don’t use our hands.

Are we really aware of how we use our hands every day?

I have always loved to work with my hands. I started playing music at a young age and continued until I was about 18, but still play every now and then. I was into dark room photography, film, writing, scrap-booking, cooking. Mostly my hands have been used for artistic endeavors. It’s where I feel the most productive.

Lately, I’ve been using my hands for gardening, for learning, for planning. It’s a different time. A phase right now where I haven’t been as creative like I used to, but still getting work done nonetheless.

Our hands are direct communicators with our hearts and minds. I have asked myself in the past, if I was happy with what my hands were doing. When I feel like I can say yes, then I know I’m on the right track.

Are you using your hands for good? Service? Love? Or are you using your hands for hate? Abuse? Out of fear?

Are you using your hands to be productive? Or non-productive?

Lately, I’ve been spread really, really thin, juggling multiple jobs/dreams/people.

I find myself having to think about every action I do. Does it bring me joy? Is it useful? Is it productive?

Look at your hands. It’s an easy way to bring you back into the present moment, if maybe for a second or a few minutes, you are feeling out of sorts. Look at your hands. What are they doing? Are they active in a positive, loving way that serves? Or are they idle and destructive?

I know I want to go out of this world with my hands dirty because I worked hard to help others. I want to know that I used my hands well and people were able to get something out of my hands’ hard-working efforts. That’s who I am. Anyone who truly knows me knows that I am a productive, positive person who may at times pile many things onto my plate, but will always live a life of service, a life of love and gratitude. I have way too much to LIVE for.

I find that when we have idle hands, evil breeds. Keep your hands busy doing something that serves, that provides love, nourishment, comfort, growth. You will immediately feel uplifted even more.

Hands are powerful tools. Make the right choice and use them wisely.

New Journey: Yoga Teacher Training

I have always loved yoga, ever since the first time I accidentally stumbled upon it while at my dad’s house alone, watching TV before school. It was like 6am and my dad had already left for work, and it was too early for me to go to school, so I was just flipping channels on TV when I found this one station (The Oxygen Channel), and saw some people doing this weird exercise that I would later come to find was yoga. It looked interesting, so I began to try some of the poses. I’ll never forget the joy I felt while hanging upside down in the living room. I was 15. I’d found something to grab onto that totally changed my way of being, and I began practicing nearly every day after that.

Ten years later I started Bikram Yoga and fell in love all over again, and for the past five years my practice has grown stronger and stronger.

Now I’m 30, and doing my 200-hour yoga certification. Fifteen years later, I’m still just as curious as I was as a little teenager. I just started my training over the weekend and at first I was very nervous, one because of the money, and then two, because it’s a LOT of work. We have to do this daily meditation using mala beads and a mantra given to us by our instructor. Mine is pretty intense. The first day I did the meditation, I felt HIGH, like I was either drunk or just ate like ten weed brownies. The feeling made me almost sleepy. It’s weird. But it was this feeling of wholeness, completeness, like there was nothing further I needed to do. I swear it opened me up. I went to my Bikram class immediately after and was able to do so much and go super deep in certain postures, even though I hadn’t practiced in a week.

The training calls to me. I feel as though it is necessary right now, to heal, to grow. My mantra essentially is about coming back to the self, that which remains intact after everything ends. So essential to me right now. After all the things I’ve been through, relationships, jobs, things that we think define us. That’s not who we really are.

So the training is pretty intense. I have to read six books, meditate daily, practice daily, and actually log in 80 teaching hours, all within 10 weeks. Heh, if you are in the L.A. area, I can give you free yoga! I’m going to be practicing with friends and family but I’m totally down to practice with people I don’t know. SO…HMU if interested.

Of course I will share all the things I’m learning. It’s challenging for me not to write about what I’m excited about and is changing my life and helping me heal myself, and inevitably others. That’s what I choose to dedicate my life to: healing and love. There is nowhere else I need to be.

 

A new Job, new day

So last year I decided that if I was going to teach again, it was going to be something more focused, something that I really cared about and felt would make a difference. I found this organization called Enrich LA and started interning with them as a garden assistant. Fast forward to eight months later, and I’ve been hired as a Garden Ranger!

The interview was super unconventional and totally personal, you know, all those things that are against the rules to ask, but I find it rare to meet people who have the courage to go there, to find out the truth about others. The executive director of Enrich LA, Tomas, is this high energy Irish dude who immediately told me that he had two goals: to meet me and to scare me away. I was totally drawn to that because I get scared away easily by a lot of things actually. I’m pretty intuitive and I find that I’ve often interpreted my trepidation as fear rather than that gut feeling that I know better. This feeling has steered me into one of the most unexpected directions in my life but the freedom I experience everyday is beautiful, free, and essential to my being as an artist, dreamer, and spirited individual.

So I accepted the job and I’ll be teaching kids about gardening. Gardening has been one of the most essential learning tools in my life. It has taught me patience, kindness, consistency, dedication, how to identify things, when to let go, etc. I’m so excited to share this passion of mine with kids and with some adults even. I knew that I was in the right place meeting Tomas and working with this organization. Tomas says whatever he means with no filter. I have a huge filter and I asked the universe to guide me and I was answered with the opportunity to speak up, to voice my opinions, to be heard and appreciated for my heart’s efforts. I have a huge heart and I love to give. I am just so excited to move forward with this endeavor.
I find it interesting that all these really awesome amazing things have been happening since my breakup. It’s like the universe is reaffirming me that my life is way more important and there is way more for me to do than to dwell on some dude, even if I love(d) him. I think meditation has a lot to do with it as well. Every morning I wake up grateful and set the best intentions for myself and others, just by saying that I love myself, I am fulfilled, and I’m worthy. I really do wish the best for everyone. We all deserve happiness and love. It’s the only way to go around thinking.

Meditation & lunch in a Koreantown church

Today I started a new job with Aids Project Los Angeles, located in the heart of Koreatown. I had been in a weird head space for a full 24-hours due to a recent breakup with an old love I tried making a relationship with. Even after meditating, I still felt weird. So I hadn’t really been eating and it was lunch time and I couldn’t imagine putting food into my body, so I kinda just sat there with my feelings, in a business courtyard right alongside Wilshire Boulevard. I looked around, debated calling my best friend, but decided to just sit down and feel what I was feeling. I started thinking about food and eating natural.

I just couldn’t imagine putting heavy food into my body like carbs because I knew that if I ate carbs, they would make my pain go away and I might miss this feeling that I have and not learn anything from it. Food has always been something that has helped ease my pain. Growing up I ate because I was sad. I dated because I was sad, but yesterday I decided that I wasn’t going to use food to feel better after my breakup. I was going to feel exactly what I was feeling and if I got hungry, I was going to eat something healthy and nourishing to my body. I had dinner with my best friend yesterday at our favorite Korean restaurant, but I only ate the vegetables, light broth, and tofu. It was so funny. He almost spoon-fed me because I couldn’t bring myself to eat, but eventually I was able to and I felt better.

So today at the APLA office, I began thinking about my late uncle Paul, who had HIV and kept himself alive for so long because he ate healthy and meditated. I knew that the universe was speaking to me, saying, that this was a way to deal with my pain and trauma. So after a while, I snapped out of it and began thinking of what I could eat that would be healthy. That’s when I saw a lady selling fresh fruit. Perfect. I got in line and began rehearsing in my head what I would order in Spanish. My Spanish isn’t so great but everyone thinks I speak Spanish because I look Hispanic (And I am), but I’m very Americanized.

So I managed to order a large plate of fresh fruit, topped with lime, chili, and a little salt. It was perfect, all I needed. I thought about where I wanted to eat this and saw a Catholic church across the street. I sat on the steps in the shade and slowly savored the fresh fruit, thinking about what nutrients each piece had and how I was actually getting protein from the coconut. After I got full, I decided to go into the church. I sat down in the back and closed my eyes, and began to meditate. I began to say to myself, “Heal. Release. I am loved. I am guided. I am safe.”

Since I’ve been meditating, I’ve become more in tune with my deep rooted pain from childhood, you know, the kind of pain that we all carry our whole lives and may not really realize affects us still, but does. I can almost see my pain and trauma and it’s rooted in my stomach, deep in my gut and lower back. Every day I grow closer to healing that pain. Meditating is like the lifeline to God, and I know and feel that the more I meditate, the more I can trust myself and be true to what I’m meant to do here. All I know is that it has something to do with giving back to the community, to being intuitive and empathetic, connected, because that’s who I am. That’s what I have to give.

I must feel what I feel right now to break through and create some real shifts in my life. I give myself permission to feel and know that I am safe.

Meditation challenge: at the beach, off the phone

So today I decided to turn my phone off completely for hours. I got a text early in the morning during my drive to my friend’s house and ignored it because I didn’t feel like responding. I was thinking, driving, just being in my present moment.

I got to my friend’s house and we took off to go hiking in Malibu to see some waterfalls (something I’ve been wanting to do for years). Once I got to my friend’s house I decided to turn off my phone as more text messages flooded in. I only turned it on to take some pictures once we reached our destination, then turned it back off again.

We spontaneously decided to go to the beach and I wore my pink underwear and her tank top because I didn’t have a bathing suit! It was this little hole in the wall location totally away from most people. We had to climb through a hole in a fence and down some cliffs to get there but it was totally worth the danger and spontaneity. I laid down after enjoying the water and closed my eyes. I remembered how I am doing a meditation challenge and decided that I wasn’t going to let my location stop me.

I remember my late uncle, Paul, meditating any place he could. He would do it while riding in the back seat of cars, just anywhere he could. So I closed my eyes and started my deep breathing in and out and began counting. Any time thoughts came into my head, I decided to say to myself that I am loved, that I’m here. I love myself, I kept saying. I’m taking care of myself, I kept saying. I let myself take in the warm sun and the soothing sounds of the ocean, and was grateful for the spontaneous day, for my lively girl friend, and for the opportunity to be where I was. I took care of myself today. I kept my phone off. I did what my heart wanted and it felt so great.

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