Why a Life of MEANING and PURPOSE is Worth Living!

“Ever more people today have the means to live, but no meaning to live for.” – Viktor Frankl 🗣
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A life filled with purpose and meaning is what drives a person forward. Without either of these, why does a person desire to live? Why does a person then wake up every single morning: to live…or to maintain? 🤷‍♂️
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I believe these are very important questions we need to ask in a world where mental health continues to be a grave concern. 👍
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⚠️ According to the World Health Organization, depression is now the leading cause of mental illness with an estimate 300 MILLION people affected. ⚠️
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A few years ago I would’ve also been a part of that list. But I’m not anymore. 😲
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“So what changed, Donald?” 💬
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I’ll tell you it definitely wasn’t a quick-fix. As much as I want to tell you that, I’d be lying. We all want a quick-fix, the path of least resistance, the least amount of work for the biggest reward. But it’s really not the case.
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🌟 Quick fixes are not how sustainable changes in our lives work. 🌟
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Here are key factors which helped me in changing my life:
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📍 I started doing things I was deeply passionate about, even if it wasn’t “realistic”.
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📍 I started choosing to see every problem I had as a “gift” I could learn from.
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📍 I started challenging my bad habits. I quit drinking soda. I started eating more vegetables and whole foods. I started exercising more. In turn I eventually lost over 80 pounds.
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📍 I studied philosophy and saw there’s MANY ways to look at our lives and how we can live them.
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📍 I started meditating daily and becoming aware how my thoughts were greatly controlling my life.
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📍 I made a habit to always be grateful for something in my life, no matter how little.
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It wasn’t a magic pill that “treated” my depression; it was making lifestyle changes that were meaningful and purposeful. ❤️
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It wasn’t seeing depression as a biological defect that helped me alleviate its symptoms; it was seeing my emotions as messengers telling me something had to change in my life. 📬
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The status quo isn’t working; otherwise we wouldn’t have so many people feeling this way. This calls for additional solutions to solve our mental health crisis.
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🌟 I’m not saying to get rid of the current menu, but rather we expand on the available options people can become aware of and choose from. 🌟
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I’m very grateful I’ve had the opportunity to step outside the norm and go in a different direction the past year. I feel so much happier than I ever use to. 😊
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It’s not to say everything is perfect, but that life is much more fulfilling these days. And that’s a life worth living! 👌
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I will also never forget to help others do the same! It gives my life even more meaning! Eudaimonia! ❤️#TranscendLabels

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Remember Your Worth

(PUBLISHED SEPTEMBER 22nd on FACEBOOK)
I look for my social media page to be a very positive and inspiring place to visit. The posts I make are always with intention; there’s so much negativity, gossip, and unnecessary drama online so I do the opposite. Like how Mr. Rogers looked to change what television offered I look to do with social media. That may sound like a bold statement, but I’m still doing it my own way. 🙌

But there is something I haven’t mentioned. And I’m ready to share it now…

Right after I graduated college 2 years ago I got a job in the corporate world. I was excited for a new step in my future career. Whatever that future career was I wasn’t really sure, but for the time being I had plenty of security: good pay, benefits, a great manager, and a very supportive environment. Some may say: “What more could you ask for?”…💬

Well I actually parted ways with the company a few months ago. I “took the leap” without a safety net. In my idealism I was going to pursue: entrepreneurship! There’s the quote: “Say ‘yes’ and figure it out later”, and I said I was never going back to my corporate job, not out of spite but holding myself accountable to my word. 👍

In doing so a lot of realizations have come to me since I left. To say I’ve had A LOT more to learn than what I expected is an understatement. Trust me when I say when you’re in uncharted territory, you’re going to learn more about yourself and what you’ll need to do to survive. Because you’re living on the edge, your mind is in resourceful mode. It doesn’t have much of a choice if you want to survive. While this may sound negative, I’m in fact grateful I’m learning it all now so I don’t have to later! 😁

Fear is a great motivator to push you forward, but fear can also overtake you if you let it. It was a few weeks ago I got really anxious with how my bank accounts were looking, and I let fear control my thinking to settle for a nearby job as a Dishwasher. It’s not a passion, it’s not what I’m gifted at doing, and it’s certainly not the best value I can provide to the world, but I said in this case: “Money is what matters”. 🤷‍♂️

For a week or so it felt fine. I learned what needed to be done, and I got it done. But a few days ago I had a moment that is still sticking out in my mind this evening.

I was washing dishes during a very hectic meal time, one dish after another pouring into my area ready to be washed. Wipe Off Dish, Spray, Wash, Dry, Repeat. By the time I had finished all the dishes I looked at the clock. 4 hours. 4 hours I had been washing dishes, and I didn’t understand how… 😐

The obvious answer would be “I was keeping busy”, but I mean it in a different way. Where had my mind been the past 4 hours?! I was on autopilot, and I wasn’t conscious of it being so until afterwards. Can you relate to that feeling?!

Throughout the rest of my shift my thoughts reflected on what the philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre referred to as “bad faith”: this awareness I had taken on the role of a Dishwasher. There was no identity of Donald washing dishes for 4 hours; for 4 hours I was the identity of a Dishwasher. I didn’t know where the time went by…and I didn’t know where “I” went by either! 🤔

I had experienced these existential feelings before. And it was because I had experienced them before that another realization hit me too: it’s no wonder why so many people don’t have a sense of purpose and meaning in their life. So many people are not given the time to explore or develop them. So we are instead settling for what everyone else tells us is the case: “This is what you’re suppose to do”, “You have to make money somehow”, “That’s just how the world works”. Where’s the personal empowerment in these beliefs? Are you your own identity, or are you a job description? 😟

It’s honestly pained me before when I’ve asked people what their passions are and their answer is they really don’t know or if they do know they don’t believe it’s something they can do more often. It probably pains me too because it reminds me of myself a few years ago. As I said earlier I had NO IDEA what I wanted to do with my life a few years ago too. But if we really only have one life to live on this earth, I don’t believe we “have to” spend it lifelessly. It’s what my mission is all about! 👊

This evening I put in my two weeks notice as a Dishwasher. I have a renewed sense of purpose, and I have a set plan on where I’m going again. You can call it: “irresponsible”, “reckless”, “dangerous”, I’ve heard them all. It’s not changing my mind on the world I want to positively impact for the long-term. 🌎

I’m going to continue building my business/mission because that’s where my true calling is at: helping people and showing others what they’re capable of achieving. Life Coaching, Wellness, Social Media, and there’s plenty more branches on my tree in the future! “Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.”#TranscendLabels ❤️

I really appreciate all your positive feedback! I hope through the time you’ve gotten to know me that I’ve provided lots of insightful and positive content to you! If I have, I really appreciate if you SHARE this post so I can spread my mission of Transcending Labels to others! I want this to go global!  

 

How I AWAKEN My Inner Warrior! (PERSONAL)

💪 There’s a Warrior inside all of us! 💪

Have you ever experienced a moment where you stunned yourself, where you were just like: “HOW DID I DO THAT?!” I’m talking about moments where You surprised yourself and saw how you’re more capable of doing something than you initially believed?! 😲

I’ve experienced those moments many times in exercise! 🔢

I consider myself more of a Lover than a Fighter. But there are moments where the inner Warrior just comes out of me, seeping into every ounce of my being as I push myself past the mental limits I initially set. 👊

It happened one day on my morning run. As I started to run, I turned on my earphones to a song by Hans Zimmer called “Journey to the Line”. It’s a song that starts off very slowly, giving a quiet and brooding mood. But over the minutes, the song continues to build. I turn my pace from a short jog to a power walk. As the volume of the song picks up, so does my pace. As the music reverberates through my ears, so it does through my entire body. My eyes start to squint, the wind pushes against my face, the sweat starts to form. And then there is a moment, a moment in the song, all but for a split second, and I let myself go…🏃‍♂️🏃‍♂️🏃‍♂️

The song enters its climax. I’m no longer sprinting; I am running for my life! In my imagination: I am running for the Gold. Running right into the heart of battle. Running as the explosions and chaos reign behind me. Running as if it is Life or Death. Running as if all of humanity’s lives depend on it. It is all up to me…! 🙌

Suddenly, the music calms. Reality comes back into focus. I am back in my body. I am back to slowing down my sprint. I am aware of my panting breathing. I am back in the quiet suburbs of Chicago. 🏙️

The immortality I felt in the moment becomes but a thought again. 🌟

There’s a Warrior in me. I don’t often show it, but it’s there. And it’s in you too! To think I use to be 80 pounds more than I was 3 years ago…it required the Warrior in me. Will You also open yourself to your inner Warrior?! ❤️ #TranscendLabels

A Very Important Question!

🌟 It’s important to ask oneself: Do you possess your beliefs? Or do your beliefs possess you?

I see a lot of life in paradoxes and contradictions. I see how everything contains its opposites: enantiodromia, yin-yang, pros/cons, however you want to call it. You could say I’m very analytical in my thinking.

But what if the way I’m looking at life is “wrong”? What if my beliefs are not the “best” way to live my life? What if what I believe as “absolutely true” isn’t the case? 🤔

There’s a film I once watched called “My Dinner With Andre”. It’s a fantastic and thought-provoking film about 2 old Theater friends, Wally and Andre, who reunite for dinner after 5 years. Wally remained in urban New York continuing as a playwright while Andre abruptly left Theater to travel the world in search of something more.

Throughout the film you hear about Andre’s vivid adventures abroad as well as Wally’s eventual skepticism with them. They share conflicting viewpoints:

📍Andre believes in seeking transcendence; Wally believes in a more pragmatic way of living.

📍Andre would say to climb Mount Everest for a greater sense of purpose; Wally would say that same purpose can also be found in the simplicity and details of one’s own backyard.

📍Andre would say he receives divine messages through patterns he sees; Wally would say they are coincidences.

📍Andre would share the benefits of a subjective, emotionally-driven view of life; Wally would share the benefits of an objective, intellectually-driven, scientific view of life.

Who’s right in this case? Do they both have valid points? What I absolutely LOVE about this film is while they share many things they disagree on, they also are able to find COMMON GROUND within each other’s beliefs. They understand and respect each other’s viewpoints and why they believe them to be so. In the end, they BOTH are able to learn from each other. No pitchforks. No name-calling. No eternal righteousness. Just 2 people having a conversation.

And this brings me back to the original point of this post: We all have beliefs. But do we understand why we have them? In other words: Are we in control of what we believe…or do the beliefs themselves control us? Do we impose our beliefs onto other people because we selfishly want others to follow them too? Or do we voluntarily share them without the expectation of agreement? 🤔

One solution I want to provide to you in order to figure that out is to ask yourself: “What do I believe? And is it possible from another perspective my beliefs could be ‘wrong’?”Just like Wally and Andre, both were very open to this possibility. Otherwise they wouldn’t have been willing to communicate with each other at all. And I believe that’s something all of us need to embrace more in our lives to further work with each other. 👥

And I know some of you may be thinking: “This whole post you’re also sharing your own beliefs! Challenge your own!” I will assure you I have. I can see how my own beliefs have both pros and cons to them, and I still choose to hold onto them. They are currently what’s serving me in my life. I’m not saying you have to agree with me, nor would I say you have to believe it. It’s another point of view you’re welcome to agree with…or not. #TranscendLabels

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Are you willing to do the same? Comment below if you are! <3