Facebook Memories have been making me melancholy lately. Just yesterday the article below came up from April 12, 2016. So much has changed since then that I feel like it’s a lifetime ago.
The 2016 version of me had already been writing for around twenty-four years without much success to speak of. He was twenty one years deep into a dead end career with an insurance company but had long ago given up on rising through the corporate ranks.
When I read these Facebook Memory posts I wish I could go back in time and speak to my 2016 self and reassure him, “In just three months you’ll discover a blogging platform built on something called a blockchain and there you will finally find your audience. Get ready because your life is going to change quickly and in a big way. In seven months you’ll be speaking at this platform’s first conference in Amsterdam, in two years you’ll quit your job and will be writing for a living. All of your hard work will start to pay off and you’ll be living a life beyond your wildest dream.”
It’s strange now to be reminded of just how clear my vision was back then. Here's the post:
Make Each Moment Paradise
My wife and I are on day three of our St. Thomas vacation and she decided to get her nails done in a little nail salon on the tourist strip in Red Hook and I decided to explore the area a bit.
I bought a baseball cap to shield my sunburned forehead, chatted with the shopkeeper and she offered me a seat on her "husband couch" until my wife's nails were done but breathing noxious fumes and reading old magazines didn’t sound like any fun so I declined.
Having seen all of the tourist shops I could bare (two) I simply stood outside in the blazing heat hoping I wouldn't get charged with loitering. A baby iguana scurried right up to my feet and stared at me tilting his head. Right then I realized that I should make the most of this quiet moment. I decided to catch up on my email for a few minutes so I read James Altucher's latest blog on minimalism and really connected with it.
After I read his blog post I was inspired to write this one, and thought about how everything is connected. Each of our actions cause a ripple effect of which we'll never know the full extent of. In a way each of us is a tiny epicenter.
Since studying the Tao Te Ching and trying to put its teachings into practice I've learned life is about surrendering to and making the most of each and every moment. Do I always remember to do this? No, but when I do life just flows better. A successful and joyful life is about learning the lessons, then teaching the lessons you learn in the subtlest most unobtrusive way possible. Most often the best way to teach is merely by example.
Sometimes the very best moments in life are completely spontaneous, so we must be prepared to be awake enough to notice when they arise. These moments can be triggered by a blog post or a baby iguana. Your guards must be down and your heart must be open.
"I know this trip to St. Thomas is the first leg of the future my wife and I have dreamed about for years: traveling the world; writing; meeting interesting new people; learning; teaching; and loving." - 2016 Me
So many people move to a beautiful place like Saint Thomas believing that living there will solve all of their problems. This much I have learned, paradise is not a place. Paradise is more like an attitude, it's a state of being. You must begin by radiating happiness wherever your feet are currently planted. When you begin to do this your life will start to miraculously change for the better.
I know this trip to St. Thomas is the first leg of the future my wife and I have dreamed about for years: traveling the world; writing; meeting interesting new people; learning; teaching; and loving.
I have many more miles to put on these feet, many more beautiful places to visit and so much more to learn but paradise, I've already found.
I'm beyond grateful for everything this community has done for me. I say this community because Hive is carrying the torch that Steemit started. The original magic that everyone made in 2016 very much lives here.
Know that whatever goals you're working towards are attainable. Success isn't for slackers. Work smart, run towards what makes you feel uneasy and pushes you out of your comfort zone, and always...ALWAYS be cognizant of the quality of your inner thoughts.
This life and even this brutal world can be an amazing place if we make it so.
Enjoy the rest of your week everyone!
(Gif from Giphy.com. Photos are original.)
Poetry should move us, it should change us, it should glitch our brains, shift our moods to another frequency. Poetry should evoke feelings of melancholy, whimsy, it should remind us what it feels like to be in love, or cause us to think about something in a completely different way. I view poetry, and all art really, as a temporary and fragile bridge between our world and a more pure and refined one. This is a world we could bring into creation if enough of us believed in it. This book is ephemera, destined to end up forgotten, lingering on some dusty shelf or tucked away in a dark attic. Yet the words, they will live on in memory. I hope these words become a part of you, bubble up into your memory when you least expect them to and make you feel a little more alive.
Most of us have experienced a moment of perfect peace at least once in our lives. In these moments we lose ourselves and feel connected to everything. I call these mindful moments. Words can’t describe how complete they make us feel.
These moments are usually fragile, evaporating in seconds. What if there was a way to train your mind to experience more of them? It’s deceptively easy and requires nothing more than a subtle shift in mindset. My new book, Mindful Moments, will teach you to be much more content despite the chaos and imperfect circumstances continuing to unfold around you. Upgrade your life experience today for only $15.99 on Amazon.com.