Why Self-Care is CRUCIAL!

๐Ÿ›‘ย ๐™„โ€™๐™‘๐™€ ๐™ƒ๐˜ผ๐˜ฟ ๐™€๐™‰๐™Š๐™๐™‚๐™ƒ ๐™Š๐™ ๐™‰๐™€๐™’ ๐™”๐™Š๐™๐™†!!!ย ๐Ÿ›‘

It was only 3 hours ago the clock hit noon.ย ๐Ÿ•›ย But I had already made the decision: Time for me to head out of New York City, and time for me to head back to my AirBnb in New Jersey to call it quits for the day.ย ๐Ÿ‘

Have you ever had a moment where youโ€™re in the middle of something and the realization hits you that you are BURNED OUT?ย ๐Ÿ˜ชย That moment hit me this morning!

I had gone back into the city to do some more sightseeing, and then…

๐Ÿšงย ๏ผข๏ผก๏ผญ๏ผ ๏ผฒ๏ผฏ๏ผก๏ผค๏ผข๏ผฌ๏ผฏ๏ผฃ๏ผซ๏ผ๐Ÿšง

I had been ignoring the messages my body was trying to tell me the past day.ย ๐Ÿ“ฌย But now they had reached the surface of my mind and it became clear as day: I needed to rest!ย ๐Ÿ˜ด

Reminding myself of the marathon tomorrow, I knew this was the best option. While you bet your bottom-dollar Iโ€™ll be at the starting line tomorrow, I canโ€™t be there with less than a half-tank of gas!ย โ›ฝ

๐ŸŒŸย ๐˜๐จ๐ฎ ๐œ๐š๐งโ€™๐ญ ๐ ๐ข๐ฏ๐ž ๐Ÿ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ% ๐ญ๐จ ๐ฌ๐จ๐ฆ๐ž๐ญ๐ก๐ข๐ง๐  ๐ข๐Ÿ ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ ๐๐จ๐งโ€™๐ญ ๐ก๐š๐ฏ๐ž ๐Ÿ๐ŸŽ๐ŸŽ% ๐ญ๐จ ๐ ๐ข๐ฏ๐ž!ย ๐ŸŒŸ

So, Iโ€™m taking some Me Time the rest of the day. To introspect. To refocus. To be present again with my thoughts, away from the excessive noise of the city.ย ๐Ÿง˜โ€โ™‚๏ธ

To be fair, Iโ€™ve heard over a couple dozen cars honking outside my window as I write this but itโ€™s better than nothing!ย ๐Ÿ˜…

If thereโ€™s one thing Iโ€™ve learned traveling so much is you need to make sure youโ€™re taking care of yourself.ย โค๏ธย When you travel, you are stepping outside your regular routines, adapting to your new surroundings, and that will take time. You may even at times be required to simply improvise.ย ๐Ÿ˜…

๐˜๐จ๐ฎ ๐ง๐ž๐ž๐ ๐ญ๐จ ๐ฆ๐š๐ค๐ž ๐ฌ๐ฎ๐ซ๐ž ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ’๐ซ๐ž ๐ ๐ข๐ฏ๐ข๐ง๐  ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ๐ซ๐ฌ๐ž๐ฅ๐Ÿ ๐ซ๐จ๐จ๐ฆ ๐Ÿ๐จ๐ซ ๐๐„๐ข๐ง๐  ๐š๐ง๐ ๐ง๐จ๐ญ ๐ฃ๐ฎ๐ฌ๐ญ ๐ƒ๐Ž๐ข๐ง๐ .ย ๐Ÿง˜โ€โ™‚๏ธ

Thatโ€™s why Iโ€™m back at my AirBnb now. ๐’๐จ๐ฆ๐ž๐ญ๐ข๐ฆ๐ž๐ฌ ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ ๐ง๐ž๐ž๐ ๐ญ๐จ ๐ญ๐ก๐ซ๐จ๐ฐ ๐š๐ฐ๐š๐ฒ ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐ข๐ญ๐ข๐ง๐ž๐ซ๐š๐ซ๐ฒ ๐ญ๐จ ๐Ÿ๐จ๐œ๐ฎ๐ฌ ๐จ๐ง ๐ฐ๐ก๐š๐ญ ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ ๐๐„๐„๐ƒ ๐ข๐ง๐ฌ๐ญ๐ž๐š๐ ๐จ๐Ÿ ๐ฐ๐ก๐š๐ญ ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ ๐–๐€๐๐“.ย ๐Ÿ›‘

I got to tell you: it can be the greatest form of self-love you give yourself today!ย โค๏ธ

๐Ÿ›‘ย ๐™„โ€™๐™‘๐™€ ๐™ƒ๐˜ผ๐˜ฟ ๐™€๐™‰๐™Š๐™๐™‚๐™ƒ ๐™Š๐™ ๐™‰๐™€๐™’ ๐™”๐™Š๐™๐™†!!!ย ๐Ÿ›‘

Now that Iโ€™m giving myself the time to introspect, Iโ€™m able to take a step back and reflect since I arrived here. Iโ€™ve had some great moments in New York so far, especially ones with local friends of mine.ย โ˜บ๏ธ

But even more, Iโ€™ve experienced many opportunities for growth. These may also be referred to as โ€œproblemsโ€, but they only remain problems so long as you donโ€™t grow from them.ย ๐ŸŽ

As much as I may not have initially enjoyed experiencing these things, Iโ€™m grateful I did so I could learn from them:

๐Ÿงณย Not knowing how to fit my luggage through a trainโ€™s turnstile

๐ŸŽซย Not knowing how to purchase bus tickets

๐ŸšŒย Getting on the wrong bus, wasting a bus ticket I bought for another

๐Ÿ’ธย Rode a bus which only accepted cash and all I had was my credit card

๐Ÿ‘ฃย Not anticipating how much Iโ€™d use buses, trains, and my 2 feet to get around

๐Ÿฆตย Not anticipating how much my leg muscles would be aching after a single day

Perhaps some of you, my urban-dwelling friends, are reading this list and laughing at how trivial it sounds.ย ๐Ÿคฃย I donโ€™t blame you! I was raised in the quiet suburbs of Chicago most of my life, so I understand how silly these will sound to some.ย ๐Ÿ˜…

But this post isnโ€™t about throwing a pity party or talking to you about first-world problems. Itโ€™s to remind you that while we may at times purposefully take on goals which challenge us, like running a Marathon, weโ€™re always going to run into goals we never planned on taking on.ย ๐Ÿ˜ฒ

๐ŸŒŸย ๐‹๐ข๐Ÿ๐ž ๐ฐ๐ข๐ฅ๐ฅ ๐œ๐š๐ฅ๐ฅ ๐ฎ๐ฉ๐จ๐ง ๐ฎ๐ฌ ๐ฐ๐ก๐ž๐ง ๐ฐ๐ž ๐ฅ๐ž๐š๐ฌ๐ญ ๐ž๐ฑ๐ฉ๐ž๐œ๐ญ ๐ข๐ญ, ๐ซ๐ž๐ ๐š๐ซ๐๐ฅ๐ž๐ฌ๐ฌ ๐ข๐Ÿ ๐ข๐ญ๐ฌ โ€œ๐œ๐จ๐ง๐ฏ๐ž๐ง๐ข๐ž๐ง๐ญโ€ ๐จ๐ซ ๐ง๐จ๐ญ.ย ๐ŸŒŸ

And our willingness to take on the goals we didnโ€™t ask for is where the greatest opportunities for growth will come in!ย ๐Ÿ‹๏ธโ€โ™‚๏ธ

And so I lay here, in my AirBnb bed, thinking about all thatโ€™s happened. I smile looking back on it all, how my mind initially magnified those โ€œproblemsโ€, how I was aware my mind was magnifying them, and how I focused on solutions nonetheless. I look back and laugh.ย ๐Ÿคญ

๐Ÿย ๐๐ž๐œ๐š๐ฎ๐ฌ๐ž ๐จ๐ง๐œ๐ž ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎโ€™๐ซ๐ž ๐š๐ญ ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐Ÿ๐ข๐ง๐ข๐ฌ๐ก ๐ฅ๐ข๐ง๐ž, ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ ๐œ๐š๐ง ๐ฅ๐จ๐จ๐ค ๐›๐š๐œ๐ค ๐š๐ง๐ ๐ฌ๐ž๐ž ๐ก๐จ๐ฐ ๐ญ๐ก๐ž ๐ฉ๐š๐ข๐ง ๐ฐ๐š๐ฌ ๐š๐ฅ๐ฐ๐š๐ฒ๐ฌ ๐ ๐จ๐ข๐ง๐  ๐ญ๐จ ๐›๐ž ๐ญ๐ž๐ฆ๐ฉ๐จ๐ซ๐š๐ซ๐ฒ.ย ๐Ÿ

Soon after, youโ€™ll be asking yourself: โ€œSoโ€ฆwhatโ€™s next?!โ€ย ๐Ÿ’ช

What is a Life Worth LIVING? (PERSONAL)

Written April 15, 2019

MEMORIES ARE FOREVER…โค๏ธ

This morning I packed my suitcase as I depart back to Chicago today. It’s been almost 2 weeks I’ve been in the UK, traveling from Scotland all the way to London. To say the least, it’s been a beautiful ride!ย ๐ŸŽข

I placed everything back in my suitcase, everything back to where it was on Day 1 when I first packed them. Everything was all back in its place…yet it also wasn’t.ย ๐Ÿ‘

Why? Because I’m not the same person I was when I got here on Day 1. I’ve shifted. Grown. Evolved in the littlest of details. And I will never be the same person again for as long as I live…๐Ÿ‘ค

Have you ever experienced a moment in your life where your emotions hit you so hard but it was only after the moment had already passed?ย ๐Ÿค”

As I packed my suitcase, the realization hit me I was actually leaving the UK, that 2 weeks had gone by so fast. So this morning I decided to take a moment to sit on my bed and just close my eyes…๐Ÿ‘€

๐ŸŒŸย Take time to remind yourself how far you’ve come.ย ๐ŸŒŸ

I let my thoughts wander throughout the past 2 weeks, and I quickly became overwhelmed with tears. As I wrapped my arms around myself, the tears turned into streams. My mouth slowly gaped open. My head tilted upward to the heavens. And for the moment, my whole heart laid bare.ย ๐Ÿ˜ญ

The places…the people…the moments…the emotions…most of all the experiences. In my mind, they all became compiled into One, sealing into my conscience for the rest of my life. I take this all with me now as I head home, and I’ll take it with me wherever I go.ย โค๏ธ

What is a life worth living?

๐Ÿ‘ย It’s one you’ve created for yourself, one you’ve decided on your own terms.

๐Ÿ‘ย It’s one which lights up your heart wherever you are, wherever you go, one you can say you’re grateful to be living.

๐Ÿ‘ย It’s one where you can peacefully say at the end of every day: “If I died tomorrow, I’ve lived a full life to completely embrace it.”

This is the life I’m choosing to live, one where the heart keeps filling and the tears keep coming. So until we meet again UK, I love you!ย โค๏ธย #EudaimonicLife

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How Traveling SHAPES You! (PERSONAL)

Written 4/5/2019

As I write this, I lay in bed at my Glasgow AirBnb. I’m quite tired, my neck aches a tad, but I’m thinking about the past few days with much gratitude…โค๏ธ

I didn’t tell many of you this…but I’m ready to now. ๐Ÿ™Œ

Last April I had traveled to London to Crew at another one of Tony Robbins’s event. It was my first time being in London, and prior to the event I made time to tour around. ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง

Being there, I felt like I has entered a different time period. The architecture I had only seen in movies was now all around me. I experienced a whirlwind of positive emotions, and I didn’t want to leave! ๐Ÿ˜„

10 days later, as I left for the airport to go back home, I remember starting to break down in tears. There was a voice in my head softly whispering: “I’m not ready to leave. I just got here.” And as I sat in the airport waiting for my flight, I held back even more tears! ๐Ÿ˜ญ

But I pledged to myself: “I’m coming back very soon!” I felt determined that what I experienced didn’t have to be temporary. ๐Ÿ‘

Now it’s 1 year later, April once again, and I’m back in the United Kingdom for another Tony Robbins event to Crew. Go figure, another Tony Robbins event right?! ๐Ÿ˜‚

But I’m not in London yet…๐Ÿ˜ฒ

Do any of you remember MySpace? If you’re an old bloke like me (๐Ÿ˜‰), you probably used it too. It was the popular social media platform before Facebook became the cream of the crop. ๐Ÿ‘‘

I originally met my Scottish friend Kris Nimbleyโ€‹ on MySpace over a decade ago! He was one of my earliest online friends, and while we didn’t always keep in touch over the years we did remain connected, from MySpace to Twitter to Windows Live Messenger to Skype all the way to Facebook. ๐Ÿ‘ฅ

So as I planned my flight back to London a few months ago, I messaged Kris and told him: I coming over to visit him for the first time ever! ๐Ÿ˜€

To say my visit in his hometown of Kilmarnock these past few days was enjoyable would be an understatement! ๐Ÿ‘

Not only did I meet Kris in person for the first time, I got to meet his lovely family, visit the local landmarks, and he even brought me to the little town of Dunure to see their famous Castle right on the coastline! It was absolutely gorgeous! ๐Ÿ˜

One thing you learn as you travel is how little you know about the world. You are reminded there is so much to see! You can read as much as you want from a travel brochure, pack as much stuff in advance to be prepared, but once you’re actually there your plans are forced to shift and evolve. โ†”๏ธ

What you initially plan and expect doesn’t go precisely the way you expect…and this unpredictably makes it very refreshing! You can let go of everything you “think” will happen and simply enjoy the ride! โค๏ธ

This afternoon Kris and I parted ways at the train station as I spend the second half of my Scotland trip here in Glasgow. Thank you again Kris for your amazing hospitality! So far Scotland’s name as being “One of the Friendliest Countries” really rings true! My visit to Kilmarnock will definitely not be my last! ๐Ÿ‘

To my readers: If you have friends you haven’t talked to in a while, I encourage you to reach out to them, see how they’re doing. We all grow, we all evolve, and you may find out you have more in common with your old friends than ever before! ๐Ÿ˜

For anyone Crewing in London next week, I’ll be seeing you soon! But first, some more beauty here for me in Scotland…! ๐Ÿ˜„โค๏ธ #EudaimonicLife

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Do You Believe in Coincidences?

Do you believe in coincidences? Do you believe everything happens for a reason? As my other blog entryย about reuniting with my old friend illustrated, I’m a believer in this area, how life happensย forย us, notย to us. The past few years I’m noticing what I’d call “happy coincidences”, occurrences I can’t fully explain but I can’t help but smile about. I’m not talking about anything paranormal, but occurrences that make me think that the odds of them happening were so slim. Nonetheless, they happened.

I’ll share with you another example. Two weeks ago I was on my way to London to do some volunteer work. I’d never visited London, let alone traveled to Europe by myself, so a lot of Firsts were going to happen for me on this trip! Little did I expect an additional First that I wasn’t even expecting!

The day of the trip, I anxiously packed my bags, got driven to O’Hare airport, stepped onto the Norwegian Airline plane, and traveled 4000 miles across the world to London’s Gatwick Airport. Minus my new sleeping accommodations, I was so anxious I could hardly sleep on the plane. By the time we had arrived at the airport, I was needless to say a bit dazed and drowsy!

As I stepped off the plane, it was now 10am in London. Still in my half-awake mode, I grabbed my bags at the baggage claim and went straight to Customs so I could enter the UK. I believe I waited in the line there about 2 hours, but given my sleepy mood I’ll give the benefit of the doubt and say it was at least an hour. It was one of those long lines where the airport had it set up to zig-zag throughout the room. It was one of those lines where every 30 seconds everyone took a step forward except you because you likely weren’t paying attention. It was one of those lines where you could look at the crevices in the floor and write a bestselling novel about them before you reached the front. Long story short, the line took a while.

And here’s where it happened.

I was waiting in line, rubbing my eyes with one hand and holding my baggage in the other. I’m looking to see where the front of the line is, and then to the back to see how much longer the line has extended since I got in it. And then I see him. I see a taller gentleman with a woman. At first I’m unsure, but then I have this feeling in stomach that I know who he is. This person that was about a dozen people behind me in line was someone I use to work with.

I remember my body feeling tense, because in my mind I debating whether or not I should ask and confirm it was him. The part of me that was saying not to do had a valid point:ย What is the possibility I’d really run into someone I knew from a different state, from 10 years ago, 4000 miles away from home, in the same country, in the same airport, and in the same room?

It was him. He was just as surprised as I was. We honestly didn’t know what to make of this surprise reunion. He noted how he vaguely recognized me, but he remembered. We briefly spoke, we gave each other our farewells, and we went on our way. This person, I worked with him 10 years ago at a summer camp. I barely knew him at the time then too, but I never forgot his face. As I got to the front of the line and walked out of Customs, I started smiling to myself:ย The possibility of that happening happened…ย 

I had many great memories on my trip, and this was just one that continues to stick out to me. ๐Ÿ™‚