Tag Archives: be you

Facing The Darkness

Last year I wrote Running From The Darkness and opened up about my struggle with finding meaning in my life and dealing with low thoughts of self worth and depression. It took a lot for me to write that and to be completely vulnerable to the world. Now, I have come full circle.

Prior to moving to Durango, my experience with meditation was very minimal. It was inconsistent and I only went for 10 minutes at a time. I mainly did it before bed to relax, reduce stress and to sleep better. Little did I know I was just skimming the surface.

When I first got to my new town, I discovered that there was a meditation center and a few nights out of the week there were group meditation sits. Usually they last as long as 45 minutes and then the leader does a talk afterwards.

If you haven’t meditated before or if you are new to it like myself, 45 minutes is a long ass time to be completely alone in your head. Sometimes my mind is going 100 mph and sometimes my mind is completely clear. Sometimes I am in complete bliss and sometimes I am digging deep in the dark corners that have been tucked away my entire life.

Meditation and mindfulness is not just about finding positivity in yourself and the world around. Part of it is about becoming aware of negative thoughts and emotions too.

When you become more mindful you begin to ask yourself why you do what you do, why you say what you say and why to think the way you think. It’s almost like a way of asking yourself, who am I?

A lot of the things we tell ourselves, whether good or bad, are from a lifetime of experiences and somehow we have become conditioned to think that way.

For some reason, I was conditioned to think that I was worthless, that my life had no meaning and I wasn’t happy. Maybe those feelings were rooted in my lack of finding meaningful work that I loved and/or from all of my failed relationships.

I truly believed all of the negativity I was feeding myself.

I used my passion of running to push all of that aside and to chase a life of happiness. I was running from myself and the darkness. It was a quick fix, but no matter how far I ran it would always be with me.

“You can outdistance that which is running after you, but not what is running inside you.”

Lately I have been working on personal compassion. Compassion towards the world was one thing that I felt when I first began a consistent meditation practice. But I can be my own worst enemy and I wantedto dive into that area of my mind head on.

How I did that was with words of positive affirmations. After a few sits, I could tell a slight shift in my outlook on myself, but I knew there was more that I could do.

About 2 weeks ago, I was meditating and I realized that there was something that I have never said to myself.

The words “I love you” came out and I honestly couldn’t hold back the tears.

It felt like I finally saw myself as someone deserving of my own compassion and love. I was beginning to accept myself as someone who I would in normal life, like a friend or a loved one.

It was a relief to hear myself say those things to myself. Like I had been waiting all of my life to hear those words from me.

I continued with this practice and again, I didn’t realize there was a depth even further.

Last night, while at the group meditation we were doing a guided meditation. We were asked to think about someone who we are envious of and then we told to realize that we are all the same in that we share the same air, the same gravity, the same world. It doesn’t matter what others have or what other do.

We are all equals in this world.

Then the leader of the mediation said, “you are good enough.”

My internal armor dissolved.

Tears welled up and then they flowed down my face and I couldn’t hold them back.

She said it again and I felt free from myself. Free from all of my self hate that I had tucked away. Free from the shit I was running away from. I finally felt like me.

I was liberated from the internal cage I built inside as I struggled with life after graduating college. I finally felt like I deserved everything that there is good in life.

Later in the mediation she said “sometimes meditation is about going into the darkness with a flashlight, not about pushing it away.”

Last weekend’s race at Antelope Canyon was the first race I did after starting to be more compassionate with myself and it was the most enjoyable race I have ever done. I was solely running for the love of running. I wasn’t running for a certain time or for a certain place. I ran for the passion and not to try to make myself feel worthy and deserving of myself. I ran because I loved it. I ran free.

There is a reason why I wanted to share this with everyone. And it also goes with why I try to inspire everyone to follow their hearts. I believe part of my life’s purpose is to translate my experiences to everyone, so that they are inspired to take a chance at the life they want deep down.

So here is my message to everyone and I won’t stop reiterating it:

You are good enough. You are capable of amazing things and you deserve everything that your heart desires. You are beautiful. You are incredible. You are better than you think you are.

You are alive for a reason and that reason it to do amazing things. We have one chance at life, so go fucking for whatever it is that you want. Go for it. Like, right now.

There is that saying that “it’s about the journey, not the destination.” Well majority of the world is living as if they’re at the destination. Just sitting, coasting by and not truly living. They’re already dead. If it’s about the journey, then make it a journey. Doing something you hate everyday isn’t a journey, it’s a death sentence.

Wake up. Be alive. Be mindful of the world around you. Smile more. Taste this wonderful life. Appreciate everything around you. Be grateful to be alive. Wake up excited everyday. Take chances and take pictures. Dance and sing. Be free. Travel. Make mistakes. Learn and grow. Open your heart. Write your own story.

Do the world a favor and just be you.

The things you want are just on the other side of fear that you’ve made up in your mind. I have been on my path for a few years now and I can only say that it is fucking wonderful to see the world the way that I do. Don’t let others hold you back and don’t let yourself hold you back.

When you follow your heart, you meet the most beautiful people and go to the most beautiful places.

Go live. Chase your dreams. Follow you heart. Never stop living.

I know I still have a long way to travel down my road. I just hope you have the courage to travel down yours.

Fight Every Day

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As many of you remember, Stuart Scott was an anchor for SportsCenter on ESPN for 20+ years until he passed away at the beginning of this year after battling cancer for 7 years.

Looking back, he’s probably the first celebrity or public figure to make me tear up after hearing about his death.

As far back as I can remember, I watched him every morning before school to watch all of the previous day’s homeruns and slam dunks.

His fight against cancer hit mainstream after his deep and moving speech when he received the Jimmy V Award for Perseverance at the 2014 ESPY awards.

Hit play if you haven’t seen it:

Just before his passing he finished writing a book, Every Day I Fight, about how he made his way to ESPN and all of his complications with cancer.

One thing that really stood out for me while reading it this weekend was that he stayed true to himself. He was who he was.

That’s what made him so entertaining to watch on TV.

He even says in the book that he commentated just like he was talking with his friends while watching a game. And if you ever watched SportsCenter with him, you couldn’t have agreed more.

That’s why people loved him. He was who he was.

Another thing that came to mind while reading his story, was why is it that people change their behavior when they find out they have cancer?

I loved reading about his new perspective on cherishing each moment that he experienced. Not that he didn’t before but not knowing if it would be his last with someone made each moment that much more special.

But what I was thinking was why wait to hear we only have a certain amount of time left? We are all going to die.

Let me repeat that. We are all going to die.

Let that sink it.

Some people go to bed at night to never wake up. Some drive off to work and never return home. Some get cancer and are told they have five years to live.

Do you ever get into a deep conversation with friends and someone asks, “what would you do if you only had six months to live?” Or some form of that question.

Why don’t we live like we have a certain number of days? Why do we put things off that we really want to do?

This might sound crazy, but imagine your doctor just told you that you have x number of years left. What would you do?

Maybe we should start living as if that were the actual case. Because all of our chances of living are zero.

The imagine that I posted of Stuart jumping rope, says a lot. But what I really love is that it shows strength, especially after knowing that he went straight to the gym after each chemotherapy treatment. It also shows that he never gave up living despite what he was going through.

Even though a lot of us will have no idea what it’s like to go through life with cancer, we should fight to live for each day as we had only a certain amount of time left alive. Which is the most true fact there is.

Whatever you want in life, fight for it.

Fight every day for it.

And just like Stuart, just be you.

Just Be You

“The greatest of people that have ever been in society, they were never versions of someone else. They were themselves.” -Niel deGrasse Tyson

Your heart wants what no other heart wants. It wants you to follow a path that has never been traveled before.

You are the only you there is. You are living a life that has never been lived before.

Yes, you will be inspired and influenced by many people. But you can’t do exactly as they did. That was their story.

You have your own unique, never before seen or lived, story.

Listen to what your heart wants and follow it. That is the only path to your greatness.

If you don’t, then you won’t be truly living and you will being living your life on a constant hold. All while your heart keeps thumping and tapping deep in you, for you to be you.

Just be you.

“Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.” -Dr. Seuss