0

The Attachment Trap

attachment

“The root of all suffering is attachment.” – Buddha

Attachment is based in fear.

Think about it. You’re attached to your lover because you’re afraid they’ll leave. You’re attached to your job because you’re afraid of not making money. You’re attached to your identity because your ego is afraid to just BE. You’re attached to an idea because you’re afraid of being wrong or not knowing. You’re attached to everything you have because you’re afraid of what’s outside of your comfort zone. Can you see the trend?

So in many ways, attachment is “giving too many fucks.”

Now you might be saying, “Hold on! Are you telling me I shouldn’t care about anything?”

Nope. All I’m saying is to release attachments.

You can still love someone without being attached to them. In fact, true love has nothing to do with attachment. It is unconditional and freeing.

You can still do incredible work without being attached to it. I’m doing that while writing this. You can still make a positive impact on the world without being attached to the results. In fact, nonattachment increases the quality of everything you do.

The art of not giving a fuck is all about transcending fear and attachment. When you clear all of the bullshit you’ve accumulated throughout life, what are you left with? Peace, love, happiness and bliss.

And that’s what we’re all chasing – some combination of those feelings – right?

This was an excerpt from my book Essentialism and the Art of Not Giving a Fuck

Now… A Challenge to You

What are you attached to?

What ideas, beliefs, habits, addictions or patterns are you clinging to?

And here’s the key question: Which of those attachments do not benefit you?

Be honest with yourself.

Maybe it’s social media, your phone, sugar, coffee, alcohol, pornography, cigarettes, anger, complaining, watching the news, attention-seeking, victimhood…etc. Attachment comes in many forms.

Just saying “I can stop whenever I want,” is the telltale sign of self-deception.

Challenge yourself to drop all attachments for a short period of time. A week is great. But even a day would help.

Doing an attachment fast creates a pattern interrupt. It stops the momentum of any habit in its tracks and gives you much needed perspective.

From there you have the power of choice, instead of being a slave to your attachments.

Releasing attachments results in freedom. And only then can you be in a place of unconditional love.

Much love.

– Stevie P!

PS – For more on attachment, fear and letting go of things that don’t serve you, check out my book Essentialism and the Art of Not Giving a Fuck.

0

5 Reasons Why Your Body Is The Portal To Spiritual Growth

body spiritual growth

Answer this question truthfully…

Are you ignoring your body?

In our society, the vast majority of people live exclusively in their head (yes, even workout junkies). And a small percentage falls into the trap of what I call spiritual escapism, living in the clouds. Both are delusional.

The key – to unlocking our potential and living a fulfilling life – is THE BODY.

The body is not something to be ignored. It’s not something to be neglected. It’s not something to be demonized. And it’s definitely not something to be viewed as an impediment to spiritual growth. In fact, the exact opposite is the case.

The body is the portal to spiritual growth.

“Transformation is through the body, not away from it.” – Eckhart Tolle (The Power of Now)

The most spiritual, transformational thing you can do is to be FULLY PRESENT. I’ll repeat that again. The most spiritual, transformational thing you can do is to be fully present.

Everyone is looking to escape the negative aspects of reality, including you and I. If you’re denying this, that’s part of your escapist self-deceit. And people try to escape in different ways; drug/alcohol abuse, television, work, social media, addiction to spiritual practices, externalizing power to authority figures instead of looking within…etc. Basically, most people will do anything to distract themselves from… well… themselves, and their raw emotions.

But no forms of escapism work… They just mask a problem and let it fester in the shadows. That’s when things get really ugly, and we see it reflected on the macro level in the world.

Here’s the hard truth: The only way out is through.

The best way to solve any problem, or realize that the problem doesn’t really exist, is to face it head on. Yes, this reality can be extremely challenging. But it only gets worse if you try to ignore or avoid it.

However, everything gets transmuted once you dive fully into reality, into the present moment. And that is done through the body.

With myself and many others, I’ve noticed that physical health is what tends to first open people up to who they really are. It’s the “first domino” that catalyzes spiritual growth, self-awareness, empowerment and all that “good” stuff.

After realizing this, I started looking into why this is the case. And here’s what I found…

5 Reasons Why Your Body Is The Portal To Spiritual Growth

body spiritual growth

1. Health

With a healthy body, everything else falls into place.

You can think more clearly and creatively. You also become a better conduit for ideas and intuition. Everything regarding cognitive function and perception becomes heightened when you’re healthy.

Another byproduct of health is being vibrant and full of energy. When someone is healthy, you can see that sparkle of life in their eyes. When someone is really unhealthy, they have that vacant look. This is a huge indicator, because you can literally see that some people are embodying their divinity.

Health is also the practice of self-love and self-care, which obviously has spiritual implications. It’s taking care of your temple and allowing the presence of the divine (or whatever you want to call it) to come through.

So what are the basics of health? It’s really simple when you boil it down. Eat real (natural) food and move your body. If you do that, you’re at least 80% there.

2. Getting Out of Your Head

Being in your body gets you out of your head. And that’s a big deal in today’s society.

Most people are trapped in their head and slaves to their mind/ego. The mind makes a beautiful servant but a terrible master. And the mind is a risk calculator, meaning if you’re trapped in it, you’re going to be calculating risks 24/7.

Our minds are hardwired to detect threats, because that’s what has kept us alive for millions of years. But we no longer have to deal with saber tooth tigers, so 99.9% of fears are purely psychological/abstract and not based in real danger at all.

But, in general, we let this risk calculator run the show. This is why the vast majority of people live in a state of perpetual fear.

Most people spend their whole lives thinking about the past or future and COMPLETELY MISSING THE PRESENT MOMENT. Actually acknowledging, feeling and experiencing your body changes this.

3. Presence

Being more in your body helps you to be present.

You get out of your head, and in the present moment. This point is so important that entire books are written on it (The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle, Be Here Now by Ram Dass, You Are Here by Thich Nhat Hanh…etc.)

When performing a difficult exercise for example, it’s hard (and even dangerous) to be thinking about the past or future. This is why exercising can help you cultivate a practice of presence.

On the other side of the spectrum, many types of meditation involve body awareness and body scanning. This fosters a state of presence.

There’s also mindful eating. The practice of mindful eating means simply being completely present while eating.

First of all, you’re aware of what you put into your body. Most people mindlessly shove food down their gullet, then wonder why their health/performance is sub-par. And another aspect of mindful eating is being fully present and undistracted when eating. This means fully experiencing the taste, smell, texture of food and noticing how it feels when being digested. Practicing this not only allows you to enjoy food more, but hones the ability to feel what is beneficial or detrimental to your body.

And when you’r body is healthy, the clarity and clearheadedness that naturally arise make it far easier to be present (as well as the absence of pain/discomfort).

4. Being In Tune

I hinted at this while discussing mindful eating. Being healthy helps you get more in tune with your body.

And it’s not only with eating. It helps you get in tune with intuition, feelings and emotions. Again, good health allows for all kinds of clarity and the healthy flow of energy. Plus, there are the benefits of getting out of your head and being present.

All of this results in being very in tune with the subtleties of life. There’s nothing woo-woo about it. When you’re healthy, your awareness is heightened.

5. Holistic Expansion

True expansion, true authenticity and true health, is holistic.

You cannot ignore an aspect of self and think it won’t have side effects. We see the neglect of the body in many religions, which obviously doesn’t work out well (where guilt, shame and all kinds of perversions run rampant).

On the other hand, we see the neglect of the emotional and spiritual aspects of self in modern western society, and it doesn’t take a genius to see all major “systems” need to change.

We need to embrace all aspects of ourselves. And love it all.

The more grounded you are, the more connected you are to everything. Being fully embodied is a way of embracing wholeness.

I mean, there’s a reason why “spirit” (or whatever your term is for God/Source) is choosing to express itself physically, right? If not, we wouldn’t be here. Even if it were some big cosmic joke, we’re here now, in human form. So start with being present and fully conscious in this experience.

It also doesn’t stop at the body. The body is an aspect of self, not your entire self. It’s a portal to your true self, not the totality of your true self. Again, embrace all aspects of self.

Becoming Spirit Embodied

So how do we get more into our body?

It’s very simple; engaging in daily practices that benefit the body. Here are some ideas:

  • Getting out in nature
  • Hiking
  • Going to the beach (where you get all four elements at once – sun, air, earth, water)
  • Putting your bare feet on the Earth (aka grounding/earthing)
  • Any form of exercise
  • Yoga
  • Any form of martial arts
  • Eating healthy (and mindfully)
  • Taking a walk outside
  • Simply being present
  • Fully experiencing your senses
  • Meditating on how each part of your body feels
  • Breathing exercises
  • Cold water exposure (cold showers)
  • Swimming
  • Conscious sex
  • Dancing
  • Singing

Love your body. Cultivate health. Embrace all aspects of self.

Much love.

– Stevie P!

0

33 New Ways to Measure Success

success

When you think of the word success, what comes to mind?

Money? Flashy suits? Private jets? Expensive cars? Penthouse suites?

That’s so old paradigm, bro.

For the last few decades (and way longer in some cultures), success has been almost entirely associated with money.

Of course, monetary success is an aspect of success, but it’s far from total success.

The core definition of success is, “the favorable or prosperous termination of attempts or endeavors; the accomplishment of one’s goals.”

That can literally apply to ANYTHING. And it should be.

So in the spirit of rendering old paradigms irrelevant, I’ve made a list of 33 new ways to measure success.

Note: Don’t cling to measurability in terms of amounts or statistics. Many of these are measurable in the simple sense that you can “check them off” as they occur in your life.

33 New Ways To Measure Success

  1. How much you laugh every day
  2. Free time
  3. Location independence
  4. Earning a living through helping people
  5. Enjoying the little things in life
  6. Making someone’s day
  7. Having the capacity to give
  8. The ability to choose what you do in a day
  9. Leaving your comfort zone
  10. Choosing love over fear
  11. Deepening a connection with someone
  12. Meditating
  13. Creating something (anything)
  14. Expressing yourself in any way
  15. Getting an idea
  16. Truly tasting food with full awareness
  17. Using your body in a new way and noticing how vibrant it feels
  18. The ability to travel
  19. Richness and diversity of experiences
  20. Perception expansion
  21. Every time you leave your comfort zone
  22. Whenever you create an interesting story
  23. Connecting with nature
  24. Being completely authentic in an interaction with someone
  25. Having the courage to be vulnerable
  26. Admitting when you’re wrong
  27. Trying something new and succeeding
  28. Trying something new and failing
  29. Learning from a mistake
  30. Reconnecting with an old friend
  31. Making a new friend
  32. Finding likeminded people
  33. Being fully in the present moment

Every time I check off one of these items, it’s a success.

But there’s a bit of a paradox…

Constantly chasing success is a trap. Your self-worth is not attached to anything you do. You’re worthy no matter what.

This is why the last, and most important, measure of success is BEING FULLY IN THE PRESENT MOMENT. If you ever find yourself fully in the moment – not lost in thoughts about the past or future – that’s success!

Yeah, it’s fun to do cool things and experience all that life has to offer. But if you lack the ability to JUST BE, you’re always going to be chasing the illusory pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

Remember, success can be found in the simple things.

Now you have some specific ideas to help you reevaluate how you measure success.

We all deserve to be able to create the best versions of ourselves and make the most out of life.

Do you have any other ways to measure success? Drop a comment below.

Much love.

– Stevie P!

33 Ways To Instantly Change Your Energy

change your energy

Life isn’t always sunshine and rainbows…

We’re humans. We’re imperfect. And we grow through challenges.

While it’s important to acknowledge everything that comes up, you don’t have to unnecessarily wallow in it!

We all experience negative emotions, ranging from complete terror to sadness to just plain stagnation.

No matter what you’re going through, there are ways to change your energy. Of course, you must be aware in order to change it. Denial only makes the “problem” worse.

So first, be honest with yourself. How are you really feeling? Feel it deeply and become fully aware. From there, you now have the power to choose to shift it.

I get stuck in some kind of rut at least once per week. And when I do, I don’t deny it. I acknowledge it, notice where its stemming from and then transmute it.

And I’m able to transmute most things pretty easily because I have so many tools in my toolkit. Here are some of those tools…

 

33 Ways To Instantly Change Your Energy

  1. Deep breathing (into your belly)
  2. Alternate nostril breathing
  3. Shaking and vibrating your body
  4. Look up at the sky for 5 minutes
  5. Qigong
  6. Elliott Hulse’s Bio-energizer warmup
  7. Journaling
  8. Practice gratitude (3 things you’re grateful for)
  9. Dance
  10. Sing
  11. Chant (I like chanting “Om”)
  12. Put your bare feet in nature
  13. Walk outside
  14. Engage in some kind of art (writing, drawing, painting…etc.)
  15. Talk to someone who listens with compassion
  16. Rebounding on a mini trampoline
  17. A quick yoga session
  18. Take a cold shower
  19. Swimming
  20. Sauna
  21. Take an ice bath
  22. Meditate
  23. Visualization (visualizing your goals and sense of purpose)
  24. HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training)
  25. Put your body in power positions (ex/ Smiling with your hands held high above your head)
  26. Stand on one leg for a couple minutes, then switch legs
  27. Laugh
  28. Cry
  29. Lay on the floor
  30. Do something spontaneous
  31. Pretend like you’re a kid again
  32. Put on your favorite song
  33. Speak in gibberish (make up your own language)

change your energy

Add these to your toolkit. And apply at least one of them whenever you’re feeling “off.”

With a bit of self-awareness, an idea of balance and the application of some of these techniques, you have the power to shift your energy.

I wish you well.

– Stevie P!

PS – For another great resource on shifting your energy, check out this article: An Active Meditation For People Who Don’t Meditate

The 10 Best Websites About Minimalism

minimalism

We all could learn a lot more…

FROM LESS!

The constantly busy, hyper-consumerist paradigm clearly hasn’t increased our quality of life. As a society, we’re realizing that the lifestyle of more stuff, bigger houses, full schedules and staying busy is killing ourselves and the planet.

This is why so many people are gravitating towards concepts like minimalism, simplicity and Essentialism.

In honor of my new book Essentialism and The Art of Not Giving a Fuck, I decided to compile a list of resources about minimalism.

Minimalism vs Essentialism

Minimalism and Essentialism are very similar. Both increase quality of life through simplicity.

The only real difference is that minimalism focuses on reduction, while essentialism is more about focusing on what’s really important and letting go of the unessential.

They’re so closely related that they can be used interchangeably in most cases. Minimalism incorporates essentialism and essentialism incorporates minimalism.

Why Minimalism?

Minimalism has been rapidly increasing in popularity.

And for good reason. People are realizing that more doesn’t always equal better. In fact, it’s the opposite in most cases.

We’re all chasing the same things: happiness, fulfillment, love, peace…etc. Yet for so long, we believed the false notion that doing more and having more would get us there. It clearly hasn’t worked.

Now people are finding out that, in most cases, reduction naturally creates those feelings of happiness and fulfillment.

Life isn’t fun when you’re so busy, with innumerable responsibilities and the stress of everything constantly weighing on your mind.

All it takes is a little bit of simplification. Then those feelings of peace and happiness naturally start to re-emerge.

The 10 Best Websites On Minimalism

  1. The Minimalists

  2. Becoming Minimalist

  3. Rob Greenfield

  4. Be More With Less

  5. Mnmlist

  6. No Sidebar

  7. Minimalism Life

  8. New Minimalism

  9. The Art of Simple

  10. The Minimalist Vegan

  11. Bonus: The Minimalism Subreddit

All of those websites are great resources on minimalism, as well as life in general. And the Minimalism Subreddit is a community where people exchange ideas regarding minimalism. If you’re interested in minimalism, see which of these resonates most with you.

Avoid This Trap

Like with any philosophy, people can get dogmatic.

Minimalism is no exception. So here’s a piece of advice: Avoid the trap of doing less for the sake of doing less.

Mindfully, consciously simplify your life. And if something is essential to you, keep it.

That’s why I like using the word Essentialism. It automatically makes you evaluate what is essential to you.

The vast majority of things are trivial. So find what is important to you and focus on that.

My new book, Essentialism And the Art of Not Giving a Fuck, cuts straight through the noise and chaos of life.

It will help you find and focus on what is essential to you. That simple shift in mentality opens the door to the feelings you’ve been chasing your whole life: happiness, peace, love, fulfillment and joy.

You can get your hands on the book here: Essentialism And the Art of Not Giving a Fuck

Thank you.

Stevie P!

What Michelangelo Taught Us About Essentialism

Michelangelo

“Beauty is the purgation of superfluities.” – Michelangelo

This quote by Michelangelo epitomizes the idea of Essentialism. What the Renaissance man meant by that poetic phrase was this: beauty is the removal of the unnecessary.

All aspects of beauty, all aspects of a beautiful life, simply emerge when we let go of the useless excess. When fear is let go of, we’re left with happiness. When we transcend limiting beliefs, success greets us. When we remove our blocks, creative inspiration flows.

Michelangelo also said the following regarding his artwork…“I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free.” This further shows how, in his genius, he used reductionism to create great art.

This “Michelangelo mindstate” applies to everything in life. Even if not literally with certain things, it applies metaphorically.

So let’s extrapolate a bit. How do you think Michelangelo would have approached modern life? If I were to guess, it would be very similar to the concept of Essentialism.

More Quotes About Essentialism

  • “To attain knowledge, add things every day. To attain wisdom, remove things every day.” – Lao Tzu
  • “It’s not the daily increase but daily decrease. Hack away at the unessential.” – Bruce Lee
  • “Our life is frittered away by detail… simplify, simplify.” – Henry David Thoreau
  • “Simplicity involves unburdening your life, and living more lightly with fewer distractions that interfere with a high quality life, as defined uniquely by each individual.” – Linda Breen Pierce
  • “Beware the barrenness of a busy life.” – Socrates
  • “Slow down and remember this: Most things make no difference. Being busy is a form of laziness—lazy thinking and indiscriminate action.” – Tim Ferriss
  • “Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” – Antoine de Saint-Exupery
  • “Reduce the complexity of life by eliminating the needless wants of life, and the labors of life reduce themselves.” – Edwin Way Teale
  • “Besides the noble art of getting things done, there is the noble art of leaving things undone. The wisdom of life consists in the elimination of non-essentials.” – Lin Yutang

Can you see the trend? Some of the wisest people to ever walk the Earth emphasized the importance of simplicity and essentialism. Whenever you see this kind of trend, know that it’s a concept well worth investigating.

Essentialism And the Art of Not Giving a Fuck

Yup, you read that right. That’s the title of my latest book.

And it was just released!

If you enjoyed this article, you would love the book even more. Essentialism And the Art of Not Giving a Fuck is a deep dive into the philosophy and practice of Essentialism. It also gives you a manual of how to directly apply the principles to uncover your inner peace, happiness and fulfillment.

Get your hands on the book here:
Essentialism And the Art of Not Giving a Fuck

Thank you and much love.

-Stevie P!
 

Circle of Concern vs Circle of Control

circle of control

Most people literally throw their lives away because of this…

They waste their time and energy on things they can’t control, while neglecting the things they DO have control of.

If you want to step off of the sidelines and actually engage in life, you need to understand the concept of circle of concern vs circle of control.

Your circle of concern consists of everything within your awareness.

Anything that you’re aware of is in your circle of concern. This can be news events, your friend posting pictures of their travels on social media, what the president of the United States said yesterday, what happened in the last episode of your favorite tv show, that person who yelled at you in traffic…etc. All of that stuff.

Your circle of control is what you can actually control. You have control over the thoughts you choose, the actions you choose and the reactions you choose. That’s pretty much it.

Sadly, most people focus on their circle of concern and neglect their circle of control. This is insanity! And because so many people do this, it makes things worse on the collective level (because the vast majority live in fear and believe that their daily actions are meaningless).

It’s all about where your focus is.

If you focus on your circle of concern, you become passive. And because most things on the news or tv are not empowering, it’s most likely going to be passive and negative. This is the state most people are in. If you don’t focus on your circle of control, you’re going to be a victim. It’s that simple.

Are you going to be a passive victim or are you going to be responsible and empowered? That’s the question you have to ask yourself. You might not be able to change what the President said at a press conference, but you can change your own thoughts, actions and reactions.

This is where a sense of purpose comes into play. What do you want to do? What impact do you want to have? What ripple do you want to send across the Universe?

You can optimize your health.

You can write a book that inspires people.

You can smile at a stranger on the street.

You can hold the door open for someone.

You can give a genuine compliment.

You can support local businesses.

You can choose inner peace.

You can start a business that creates positive change in the world.

You can create art that brings people joy.

All of these are possible for anyone, but they require you to focus on your circle of control.

So I ask you these questions…

Where is your focus?

Are you creating more than you’re absorbing?

Are you making the world a better place, even by the slightest bit?

This is a call for you to step into your power as a creative being.

Let’s co-create a better world together.

Much love.

– Stevie P!

PS – This was an excerpt from my new book, “Essentialism And the Art of Not Giving a Fuck.

4

Zorba the Buddha: The New Human

zorba the buddha

We humans have this weird tendency to repress parts of ourselves…

Depending on what beliefs or identity labels we cling to, we judge and repress all that doesn’t fit in with our chosen facade.

Many people repress their spiritual self, or even their emotional self. Then you have the spiritual escapists who neglect their physical self. Those are some general categories, but we all do this in different ways and to different extents.

Any paradigm that ignores or neglects aspects of self is NOT a helpful model of reality. They create all sorts of insidious problems and stifle our true potential.

Why limit yourself when the whole is available?

This is where the concept of “Zorba the Buddha” comes into play…

Ever since I first heard the term Zorba the Buddha, it resonated deeply with me.

This term was coined by Osho, who encouraged people to embrace the godliness of Buddha, without neglecting the worldliness of Zorba the Greek.

Zorba is a character in the book Zorba the Greek who epitomizes the Earthly romantic. He travels, plays music, drinks wine, embraces sexuality…etc.

Here’s what Osho has to say about this concept:

“Zorba is the foundation and Buddha is the palace. Buddha is the peak, but the foundation stones are laid by Zorba. It will be foolish to choose to be a Buddha without having the foundation stones.

I am absolutely mathematical about it: Zorba should be there and the stronger a Zorba is there, the better a Buddha is possible. So I can become Buddha any moment, Zorba is absolutely needed as the basic energy out of which the Buddha is going to be carved. Zorba is the marble rock out of which the Buddha statue has to be carved. I choose the rock…and Buddha is easy. It is just a question of opening your eyes. I don’t bother about Buddha; I am worried about people who are not Zorbas. How will they become Buddhas? They don’t have the basic material out of which a Buddha is made.

And this poverty has been given to people by our religious leaders. They have been told not to be materialists. They have been told to be celibate. They have been told to live in poverty. They have been told that life is out of sin. All these things have destroyed their Zorbas. Otherwise, every man is a born Zorba the Greek.

And if everything goes according to me, every man will die as Zorba the Buddha. Between the Greek and the Buddha there is not much distance, but first you must be the Greek.”

zorba the buddha

The head-in-the-clouds escapist mentality of some New Age people never felt right to me. Neither did the materialist philosophy that is all too prevalent in our society today. I’ve always felt like it’s best to embrace both at once, embrace all aspects of self, and embrace Wholeness.

Neglect the spirit and you become cynical and lifeless. Neglect the body and you’re prone to delusional flightiness and insanity.

As the Zen saying goes, “Before enlightenment, chop wood, carry water. After enlightenment, chop wood, carry water.”

Spirituality is not about escapism. It’s about bringing the divine intensely into the physical reality and injecting it into each moment.

This schism comes from our dualistic mentality. We THINK the body and mind are separate. We THINK heaven and Earth are separate. Here’s the truth: There is no separation at all! Only the act of thinking itself causes the separation.

Love and Wholeness

Love is the unifying force. Love is connection between people. Love is connection with nature. Love is connection with everything. Love is the fabric of Oneness.

Fear is what severs that connection. So rejecting aspects of self is done out of some version of fear.

Be fully engaged in the present moment and let love be your North Star. With love as your guide, how could you go wrong?

Bases and Peaks

You can’t have the peak without the base of the mountain. Physicality is the base and spirituality is the peak. A base without a peak is incomplete, not fulfilling its potential. A peak without a base is a mirage, a delusion.

Materialism is like only placing lego blocks on the floor and never building upwards. Spiritual escapism is like trying to build a tower without a foundation.

Look at a pyramid. Most of the effort and materials go into the base. If a base is well-constructed, the capstone basically takes care of itself. The same goes for us. If we nurture and harmonize our mind/body, the spirit naturally comes through.

When you eat healthy, exercise, rest, laugh, meditate, dance, sing and spend time in nature, you naturally feel better! You feel more creative, more connected, more blissful and more inspired, right? That’s tapping into the Buddha within!

Catalysts Of Change

The core message of almost all spiritual and self-help books is PRESENCE, or being fully immersed in the moment.

Eckhart Tolle suggests that our primary spiritual purpose is to be fully engaged in the present moment. Thich Nhat Hanh recommends walking meditations, a practice that helps with truly EXPERIENCING LIFE.

See the common theme? The key is EMBODYING divinity here and now, not trying to escape it. Again…

“Before enlightenment, chop wood, carry water. After enlightenment, chop wood, carry water.”

Sometimes I get the urge to live in the woods as a hermit. But I’ve come to realize that this is a complete disservice to both myself and the world at large.

If I were to isolate myself, I wouldn’t be able to inspire people or spread love through human connection. I would also be denying myself of physical experience. That’s a disservice.

If we want to change the world, we must do it from the inside out. First it starts within, and then within communities. This is why I love people who are bringing conscious practices to communities and places that need it the most (urban gardening, meditation in schools, yoga, alternative/clean energy…etc.).

Running off into the woods is not the solution. We must face our collective dysfunction head on, just as we must face our internal dysfunction head on. As above, so below.

Choosing to be either spiritual OR physical is an illusion! The yin is within the yang and the yang is within the yin. And all of it is within the circle, the whole. You don’t have to choose one or the other. They’re facets of the same whole. Accept your Wholeness.

“God changes his appearance every second. Blessed is the man who can recognize him in all his disguises.” ― Nikos Kazantzakis, Zorba the Greek

Source, God, or whatever you want to call divinity – is All That Is. It’s everything, all possibility. Therefore, to neglect any aspect of self is to limit your own divinity.

Embrace Wholeness. Embody Love.

– Stevie P!

1

“I Made It” Moments (The Bittersweet Truth)

remote work

I just had an “I made it” moment.

Digitally, I was on a conference call. But physically, I was on the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia, with my bare feet on the grass, the sun shining on my face, looking out at some of the most stunning landscapes I’d ever seen.

“I made it!” I thought to myself as I smiled at my “office” view.

“This is what I’ve been visualizing for the past 7 years… To be able to do this very thing I’m doing right now… Working remotely, having freedom of time and location, living life on my own terms and exploring beautiful places.”

Gratitude swept over me like a divine breeze. I basked in it, breathing in the incredibly fresh British Columbia air.

Then something unexpected happened…

As the euphoria faded, two bittersweet realizations hit me:
1. This isn’t the end. Although it feels like my dreams came true, there’s no feeling of closure here.
2. This feeling of having “arrived” is actually available in EVERY MOMENT, not just the ones we label as special.

You see, the moments when you’re able to live out your dreams are bittersweet. On one hand, it’s incredibly blissful. Yet on the other hand, it’s never perfect and it’s not an end.

My “I made it” moment actually manifested a bit differently than I expected when I first read The Four Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss. That’s the book that first opened me up to the idea that this lifestyle was even possible.

Here’s the truth. I worked a lot more than 4 hours this week. And no, I don’t earn a full-time living off of this blog or my own products. But I do have a remote job that allows me to do this. And I’m making a little more money every month with my own projects. So although I “made it,” it happened differently than I originally expected. And who knows; if I had rigidly clung to my expectations, and not flowed with the opportunities that presented themselves, this dream may not have come to fruition.

lifestyle travel

The only constant in life is change.

Nothing is static. This means that even when you achieve something, you can’t hold onto it, because it has already changed, you have already changed, and the circumstances have changed.

Every destination is really just a checkpoint along your journey. Every summit is a false summit, a checkpoint, showing you that there are always more peaks to climb.

There is no finish line. There is no destination. Life is a continuous journey!

Why do you think “successful” people are constantly looking to raise the bar? Why is everyone trying to chase their next preferred high? Because most people are caught in this endless, elusive game of future fulfillment.

Here’s a profound reframe: Every moment is an “I made it” moment. We just fail to see it in day to day life. But if you live mindfully and learn to enjoy the process, you will find that “you’ve arrived” in every moment.

“Where are you really headed? How is it really that much better than right here?” – Corey Sheikh

Of course purpose is important. Goals are important. But it’s not the achievement of goals that is rewarding. The reward is who you become in the process of working towards your goals or purpose.

Yet the ego constantly projects into the future, hoping for salvation there. This creates the trap of thinking happiness lies somewhere in the future, while continuously missing the present moment. It really is a trap. And here’s the thing; the present moment, not the future, holds all of the bliss, happiness and peace you’ve been searching for.

It’s been here and now all along.

Learn to love the process. Learn to love the journey. Learn to love the open-ended flux of the eternal now.

Realize that every moment is an “I made it” moment.

You’ve arrived. Or more accurately, you’re ARRIVING… Always.

Much love.

– Stevie P!

Essentialism: The Philosophy That Will Change Your Life

essentialism minimalism simplicity

“It’s not the daily increase but daily decrease. Hack away at the unessential.” – Bruce Lee

The key to success, the key to peace of mind, the key to making your dreams come true ultimately boils down to one thing: focusing on the essential.

Simplicity, minimalism and the like may imply that blindly removing is the key. It’s not. Essentialism, however, is about finding what is essential for you and letting go of the unnecessary.

What is “essential” can be different for everyone. For some people, that may be their family, for others it may be music, for some people it may be travel. It all depends on what you want to prioritize in your life.

What are your priorities? What do you want to focus on? What is your purpose? What direction do you want to travel in? In order to make the most out of life, we must ask ourselves those questions and prioritize accordingly.

If you don’t have priorities or purpose, then you will fritter away your days in a muck of endless distractions, yet feeling empty inside. Without focus, the world around you has more than enough distractions to keep you preoccupied, passive, stagnant and depressingly mediocre.

Let go of the unessential and cut out distractions. If you want to write a book, watching tv for 2 hours a day won’t help. If you want to get in shape, prioritize your workouts and healthy meals. If you want to meditate, center your morning routine around it. If you want to be a better parent, spend more quality time with your kids by any means necessary. Find out what is essential to you and let go of the unessential.

This applies to everything in life, from business to relationships and everything in between. A company will be successful if it focuses on its core mission. A relationship will be harmonious if both people place love first. A person will transcend mediocrity when they focus on their purpose.

Make Essentialism an “essential” part of your life, and help bring your dreams to fruition.

Want to learn how to tap into the power of Essentialism? Check out my new book Essentialism And the Art of Not Giving a Fuck!

Much love.

– Stevie P!

PS – You see how short and sweet this article is? That’s Essentialism at work!