Anyone that knows me well would probably tell you that I am a pretty happy, easily excitable, energetic and young-spirited dude, for the most part. The truth is, I am. But if I were being honest, there was a lot of sacrifice, struggle, and discipline that went into getting to and maintaining that sort of state of being... a lot.
As I'm sure, like most of you, my 20's were all over the place and exceptionally tough. An array of extremes of almost every emotion one could possibly experience. I think it's due to the fact that I have always had this innately curious little kid/artist living inside of me as far as I can remember. But the truth is, by choosing to live a life led by passion, excitement, wonder, and a constant search for adventure is basically a blessing and a curse. On one hand, it's caused me a lot of pain, disappointment, heartbreak, jadedness, isolation, and depression at times. But on the other hand, I have experienced extremely high levels of achievement, adventure, joy, peace, fulfillment, magic, soulfulness and love too. All that considered, I am humbled and so thankful that I have no regrets and wouldn't change a thing. I am who I am today because of every experience my journey has provided me - a loving, open, humble, excited, talented, and dedicated man. Now, in the heart of pursuing my dreams like I never thought could be possible.
Here are some specific feats and milestones that happened throughout the past 10 years that I think are pretty rad:
- Graduated from college
- Lived and studied out of the country for a year (Australia)
- Started my own company
- Rescued my first dog
- Made my first album
- Became an Uncle
- Moved to Los Angeles
- Toured in the UK
- I got engaged! :)
So from my crazy journey up to this point in time, here are some of the most important lessons I have learned. I hope you find them helpful in one way or another. I've attempted to place them in a sort of sequential order, at least in the way I've experienced it anyways. Take it for what it's worth.
1. Follow the energy - this is very important initial , and often times overlooked. It isn't to be confused with some sort of "hippy jargon" either. I mean it in the most basic sense - don't just pursue who and what might appear to be the safest or most secure. Instead strive to really stay connected and rooted in all that gives you the most excitement and joy. Watch a little child freely play and explore what their imagination has to offer them, and then you'll get a better picture of what I mean.
2. Hone your craft - with an elevated awareness of what energizes you the most, it will then reveal the thing(s) you can achieve at the highest level. Invite yourself on a quest to discover what might be "the one thing" you can be the best in the world at. It probably sounds daunting it impossible at first, but before you discredit yourself, sit with it for a while and just watch what happens. Which brings me to my next idea....
3. Trust & surrender to the process - when I was younger I didn't quite get this. Being very "goal" oriented, I found myself focused more on striving to accomplish or achieve greatness, but at the expense of relationships, peace, and noticing the big picture. It's all about the journey
4. Prayer and meditation - I happen to be a very spiritually sensitive person, who holds my faith in God. I believe that God hears you, He loves you, and has a master-crafted purpose for your life. Even if you don't share a similar belief, I still highly recommend pursuing a discipline of pausing and remaining mindful. Allot time out of each day to concentrate and listen carefully to the voice within.
5. Actively seek out mentors and advisers - I am very humbled and grateful to be able to have such incredible leaders, mentors, and colleagues in my life - most of whom are all older than me. In the words from my most treasured mentor, the 91-year-old living legend Dr. Carroll Rinehart, he pretty much nails it with these words I will never forget and will forever do my best to put into action:
"Be as authentic as you can in the moment given, where others will freely receive what you'll freely give." -DCR
Are you kidding me? Just take a few minutes (or years in my case) and enjoy the process of really wrapping your head and heart around that one! And trust me, there's A LOT more where that came from. But furthering my point; no matter how smart you think you are, there's always someone older & wiser in your sphere of influence who will speak into your life and challenge you to be the best version of yourself, if you allow them to of course.
I hope this finds you well and that you read this feeling inspired, encouraged, and motivated in some way. If you want to hear more, I touch on some of these ideas more depth in the keynote I gave for TEDx back in winter 2014. feel free to check it out here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HqNgzpdbjVs
Thank you so much for reading. Please feel free to share your comments below or send me an email.
Love and light,
Los Angeles, CA