On being a part, playing a part and my closing thanks from The Globe Theatre

On being a part, playing a part at The Globe (Theatre). As a final gathering of friends, newer friends who somehow with time and space become old friends, such that you feel like you’ve known them forever.

A while ago I watched this Ted Talk by Philippe Starke on Design and destiny. One proposition he made struck me more than any others when he said…

“No one is obliged to be a genius, but we are all obliged to participate…”

In short, we are a part, playing a part, at and in The Globe…IMG_4771

And as we are in society, and as we are part of community, we are “not obliged to be a genius, but we are obliged to participate…to shine

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as a bulb with wings.

And if you are ever so lucky to run into strangers, who give you the space…to play your part in their lives…

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So…what would I say to 2014-2015, my year as a Student Ambassador for London Universities…

To my fellow ambassadors, KD, the UCL IOE who sponsored my nomination, my humble thanks… for the introductions, for the coffee and the cake, for the relentless laughter and forever friendships, for letting me in on the secret joys of walking through parks holding hands and singing out of tune, for having me over for dinner, for having me down for coffee talk, for allowing me to wander but never feel lost.

But mostly, thanks for always being Free, and in being so, offering me such space to remember how important saying ‘YES’ when Lady Luck calls your name!

My Love and Very Best,

Z

PS-

“To transform the world, we must begin with ourselves; and what is important in beginning with ourselves is the intention. The intention must be to understand ourselves and not to leave it to others to transform themselves or to bring about a modified change through revolution, either of the left or of the right. It is important to understand that this is our responsibility, yours and mine…”
Jiddu Krishnamurti

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An open thank you letter to my parents

Dear Mom and Pop,

I am writing this at a little desk, in the centrality of London, watching the clouds float by in the cool summer sun. I have so much to thank you for. A thousand times over, you have given more than anyone could expect, certainly more than I ever dreamed for.

Thank you for the countless number of times you told me to Try. Thank you for the endless motivational talks in the car on the way to bowling Saturday mornings. Thank you for the innumerable times you told me, the key, is just to believe in yourself. You have to believe in yourself, you’d say. That’s not something, that’s the only thing you’d say. Thank you for trusting me with money. Thank you for allowing me the chance to buy tons of pencils and erasers and a new backpack at the start of every school year, even though I didn’t need anything new, you never second guessed my choices. Thank you for driving me to tennis Saturday afternoons, just so I could hit forehands and backhands. Thank you for believing me when I said I’d really REALLY like to go to Stanford. Thank you for making me fill out all my college applications by myself. Thank you for giving me endless opportunities to write. Thank you for reminding me that stuff is only worth as much as you believe it to be, but values, values are invaluable. Thank you for the space I asked for. Thank you for allowing me to fail, reminding me tomorrow will come to try again, and believing I would make it ‘next time’. Thank you for the sun chips and Gatorade at soccer practice. Thank you for supporting my crazy ideas, like the time I told you I wanted to do a dramatic reading of Hamlets Sonnets in class, dressed in pyjamas. Thank you for being at every one of my graduations. Thank you for remembering me, for the Starbucks gift cards, the boxes of trail mix and mango slices. Thank you for helping me move. And move again. And again. Thank you for being there when I left the US for England. Thank you for being there when I came back to visit. Thank you for always having a place in your home for me. Thank you for reminding me that Love is more important than words and way more important than accomplishments and achievements and the list of things I ‘have’ to do in my lifetime. Thank you for keeping the way I am at the centre of who I am. Thank you for the freedom, the unknown amounts of freedom from which you allowed me to feel and think and be and become. That has called me up the coast of California, across the US and for now, across the Atlantic Ocean. All the while, thank you, for staying so true to yourselves…it has meant everything to who I am, how I am and who I believe in becoming.

Without all this, and more, I would not have known the courage to pursue my dreams and reach beyond my known knowns to the unknown of other cities, other states, other countries, and, my own other world.

My thanks.

Love,

Zach

Finding a home while studying in Londontown

As a student, finding a new home in London can be a task which brings great fun but great concern. My search was made simpler and easier because my university had an allotment of student residential accommodation. However, student residential accommodation in universities has become a short-supply/high-demand proposition for many students. Others, who like me are post-graduate researchers, may also have whom an in-law space or a residence hall does not fit in with their personal needs. My work directly relates to student housing and I have read extensively in the literature on what students’ suggest are important factors when evaluating their residential life experience. So, to evaluate your own needs/wants/desires in a home in London while on a course, here are just a few sensible tips.

1. Resource how you will search. There are tons of university housing and private housing search portals. These are really useful places to begin to think critically about how to engage the large and significant sorting needed to locate what you’d like.

(As a quick note, I am not affiliated with either of the above companies or their links and therefore offer them as examples of housing search portals, as starter places, without material endorsement or responsibility for their contents or use.)

2. Second, what makes ‘Home’ for you? Is it time with new people, friends, family? Do you want a ‘sanctuary’ or a ‘hub’, more of a quiet space or social activity abounding? Is it really important to you, sunlight or seeing the water? Do you measure convenience in closeness to your institution, ease of access to sights and sounds and cityscape or are you more interested in a glancing pass and a more quiet home base?

I find asking students what is important to them in these general positive ways leads to greater clarity about ‘why’ home is important, leading to better ‘what’ choices later.

3. Assess your budget! While many people enjoy living in the centrality of London, many do not. Indeed, it is just about 20-25 minutes on the Northern Line from Euston Station to Hampstead. Here, the city has some quiet country on its outskirts.

I highly recommend exploring on foot for 2-3 days, as I did, to see the sights and sounds of where you think you’d like to live. London is amazing for how it uses space at the macro and micro level. This means you may enter a square along an untouched Victorian row and exit alongside a newly modelled modern housing split. This is quintessential London, and part of what I LOVE about being here. But get grounded in the diversity.

4. Be persistent! A lot of finding and securing residential accommodation is persisting through the process of asking, often repeatedly, and being unable to locate a space immediately. One key is to start earlier than you think you should and keep trying until you’ve worked it out. A lot of opportunities will be available, always. Housing is constantly shifting and that’s totally OK. What is useful is to have a clear set of expectations and to focus searching in the area(s) and types of buildings you feel would support you, academically and personally.

5. Finally, trust yourself! Finding home, no matter where you go, often requires accepting the world in the fullness of all that it is. That starts within you, the individual, setting out on this journey. That sense of acceptance accepts resistance as an indication a place or a space is not for you. I would like you to feel safe, supported and included in your home community, either living on your own or as is more often the case in London, with others. We all have ebb and flow and to accept and trust that there is a place for you, that you will make the best of it, and that you can change anything at any time to make it easier and easier and better and better is critical to creating a new home.

You will always have a home within yourself. This means, the physical space and its place in a students’ life and experience is really a reflection of our own imagination and thought. So, feel good. Feel good than decide where you’d like to be and live and Thrive.

Yes…Thrive.

With best wishes,

Zach

Birdsongs: awakening to Spring in Londontown

I awoke

To birds singing

Across the way on an old tv antenna

I awoke

To the sun, rising

Above the mountain top tenements of the city centre

I awoke

To the cabs hustling through

Across the black tar roads

I awoke

To the bustling clip, clapping of shoes

Across the great grey tops

I awoke

To the still air full of jasmine

Across the great criss crossing corridors

I awoke

Finding myself once again in a rampage of appreciation for the stillness and the pure positive energy and the bright hello of dawn.

With Love,

Zach

The importance of Learning and a New Origin of Species

The importance of Learning and a New Origin of Species

Learning is important to me. I don’t imagine I will ever stop. This has driven me up the coast of California and across the world to live in London.This motion, movement, relocation of my focus has brought about a great shift in my being. A recognition that, at the deepest level, I am a spiritual person. Surely, there is something in my thinking, in where I feel my work is done well, where my work makes a contribution to the way the world is able to be, its operations. And here in lies the important bit. On contribution, our contribution is our sort of self-expression of heart into the world. Yes, that’s it. Our hearts expressing themselves in the world is our contribution to the world, how it does what it does and why.

I am a tourist. From Los Angeles to San Francisco to London, my tour has been such a privilege in my life. I don’t imagine I would be the same person had I not stepped just one foot and another and another outside of my origin bubble. The human capacity is unlimited, actually, completely.

So as I restart on the New Origins of Species I am wondering about some things:

Should wanderers wonder about why they do so? Is it not enough to know, that a life lived in reflection and with conviction and some sort of unconditional might just be the ‘it’. When I think about why I am here, when I appreciate that I am even able to ask such a question, I realise that ‘the journey’ everyone speaks of is actually the self-actualised realisation:

You are Free. As Free as you permit yourself to Be. And if you undertake your work, in order to do something…you’ve missed perhaps the greatest gift of all, the origin of your self before you had the words to call, out and shout about the differences, the diversity, as such. Instead, lets have a moments time to sit.

Cross boundaries. Tremble, with joy or otherwise. Be overwhelmed, be daunted by awareness. Cross boundaries. Experience and encountering doubt, this brings us to fullness of life. Until we do such a thing, we are arrogant, prideful, bounded by our very own being. Convictions are only useful as they bring down our own absoluteness. It is to agree, once, and again and again..to be unclear, to be wrong, and to keep working. Keep going. Keep crossing within and what we do outside of ourselves will be reconnection. Keep questioning and wrestle with ideas. Doubt, just not the understanding the conscience defiance of absolute thinking. “Reject the nihilism of despair” and “the arrogance of closed minded certainty” -Lesley Hazleton.

Decide and Know. Know that choice is always yours, always.

London is for Lovers.

A celebration, a Lovers take on London, and for the Love of Lifting…it is February after all, why not all the Love

Chinese New Year

This weekend I spent some time enjoying my friends. We gathered in China Town to celebrate Chinese New Year. Here, we circled around a huge table of food and jasmine tea. Er Mei. Head over to The London Foodie for great ideas on food, wine and more across the Londonscape.

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London is for Lovers.

Now, I hear it all the time, the question about London. Is London for Lovers? Well, maybe it isn’t asked that way. Mostly, I get emails from students back in the US asking, ‘is it true, is London a cold place?’ “I hear London is busy, are people nice?” To which I reply, are people nice where you live now? I’m not trying to be cute or facetious. I think someone who can be happy anywhere will be happy everywhere and anyone who can be unhappy anywhere is inevitably going to be unhappy everywhere. So, I don’t try to convince people to move or not to move because of the ‘way’ of people ‘there’. I ask the question, the question that returns the answer back to the origin of its asking, to the ones who want to know, is London for Lovers?

Lifting with Love.

Until I moved to London, I had never thought about weightlifting, powerlifting or the like. Lifting was foreign to me. Then, one random morning I met a young man who would invite me to try out this foreign phenomenon. The story of how we got to where we are is short and sweet, but being where I am is sweeter still. Since I’ve moved to London, I’ve discovered this passion for weightlifting. More important to me, I found a community. Now, I am a creature of habits. I’m not much into ‘variety is the spice of life’ unless of course that variety is my own creation. But I can’t express in words what weightlifting means to me. Not, the lifting of weights part, but the lifting with others who encourage you, who cheer for you, who show up early and laugh and smile and inspire you. People who demand you do better, demand you give more. Not through their words, but through their own example of daily practice and perseverance.

They call themselves the breakfast club. You see, the breakfast club isn’t just your ordinary group of lifting mates. Nah, we are a hodgepodge of men and women who think liquid chalk is an essential component of life and gains can be measured in waffles and bacon and protein shakes. We start at 730 and the banter and laughter and sing-a-longs to old 80s hits from the States don’t stop for hours. We are known for trying and failing and trying and failing and trying and failing and trying, one more time. We are known for our energy, for our tenacity. Breakfast Club isn’t just a name or a title or a group of people, it’s an idea. It’s an idea that we will show up, we will work hard, we will try hard and we will keep going. Breakfast Club is about never being done and never getting finished. Well, at least not til lunchtime… 😀

London is for Lovers.

From London with Love,

Zach

Google: opportunities in how we Search

Google is Search:

Google is a global company. With offices all over the world, including several in London, Google footprints and search terms are in the sky, in our phones, on our desktops. This deeply integrated platform is in almost every aspect of human life. So what’s new? Why is Google so important? What are they doing to drive their own development and improve human experience?

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The GooglePlex in London:

Well, last week I had the chance to traverse the GooglePlex in central London off St. Giles. The building is this immense multi-occupancy complex with security badges and everything. There’s only one general way in and out. Once inside, you are sort of swooped up by this whimsical sense of Play. No wonder, the use of color and artsy, stylistic typography in every sign definitely communicates a ‘playground’ atmosphere. However, while it may feel light, you can feel there is an energy of focus in the building.

Floor after floor you are swept through multi-purpose spaces. Zones for collaboration, cooperation, collecting and collating ideas. In short, searching. Here, master craftspeople throw ideas back and forth. Here, you sip quad-shot espressos, play ping-pong, and attempt to solve mega problems using meta-data and ask…what’s going on? why is it happening? can we bring some resource to the situation which improves it? can real world problems be managed through the use of data driven decision-makers? The answer, is in short, Sometimes. Perhaps, more often than not, the answer is Yes!! But there is something in Search which allows for expansion. For more to be gleaned and gathered.

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Google: OK Google...Search

Now, being in education, my focus of study is student housing. I look at how student residential accommodation influences student personal development. Cool stuff, I think. But what’s more cool is how I see a problem and I go searching for ‘what’s going on, why that’s important, and how I’d like to address it’. That’s basically the short template of a PhD thesis in England. “What’s going on, why is that important, and how are you going to figure out how to address it?”

The point is, Google sparked something in me I wasn’t expecting. My trip called me to discern, what’s the issue I am trying to address, why is that issue important to people and how do I propose to deal with it? The experience of meeting innovative people is that they have, at their core, a skepticism that we are ever ‘done’ or ‘solved’ in a problem. Instead, the focus is on creating new means and ways of addressing what are long-standing or short-lived issues in human life.

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Google, Search and Saying ‘Yes’ to what you find…

I found my Search in Google to be both inspiring and enlightening. I can’t tell you how much I LOVE being a student ambassador because of the friends I’ve made. I don’t know if I would have found such adventure these past few months if not for the occasional catch-up with my friends. Friends who were perfect strangers before I came to London, before I was adopted into the LUIP. It is this year of fun and cool experiences. And that’s the important bit, from today. The experiences that have come from searching, from saying Yes to opportunity. To Googling and playing and pondering and asking good questions and then trying to ask better ones.

Better questions: Filtering your Search Findings…

Google offers us 9 Notions of innovation to sift through and filter your search results, after all, there are hundreds of thousands of millions and billions of possibilities. But what’s the right one? Actually, what’s the right and best one, for me? Try this…

1. Customer need = creative inspiration 2. Ideas come from everywhere 3. Fail quickly and learn    4. Allow ideas to morph 5. Creativity loves constraint 6. Share everything 7. Data informs decision-making 8. Users come first 9. Have a license to pursue your passions

Ask really really good questions. Then, go ask if you there’s a better one. Or, Google It.

My very best,

Zach

Adventure is out there…

I want to talk about three things today. Just three, but three really important parts of my life right now.

1. Devotion, 2. Friendship and 3. Adventure

1. On Devotion.

I have lived and studied in London for over 18 months. If you ask me what I appreciate most, it’s the people. My supervisor is an incredibly patient, caring and contemplative person. His work and my work have a lot in common and some stuff that’s different. He can see my passion, but always, he is asking me to think about reason. Yes, yes, reason. Said better, ‘how is this useful’? How is this useful? I have devoted my life to my life’s work. To which he often replies, that’s nice. But that’s not enough. If you genuinely want to do great work you must consider what you are talking about, why you want to talk about it and how you want to discuss it. These must be clear. Otherwise, we are passionate animals but we live in an age of reason. Not disconnected, not cold. Rather, reason is now an expectation when we discuss ideas which travel past an individual, into groups, and onto the planet. Devotion is grand. Love your work, that’s nice. But bring me something I could take to a coffee shop and speak about and people will understand. Then, you’ve done something special. This can feel heavy. My devotion can be weighty, but my friends, all of them, in so many shapes and forms, have given my path guidance, and, as is often best…just a chance to laugh and frolic and be Free. My devotion to my work is very important to me, but my friends remind me that there is more…always more…than just my work to enjoy in this life.

2. With Friendship

With friendship comes fun. Yesterday, as part of my London University Ambassador Program I had the privilege of learning about the origins and history of the London Tube. It is, was, and will likely be…AWESOME for a very long time. Sitting in the back of a small room at the top of main headquarters, (I was late to our preso, so of course, I’m at the back)…our historian (David) captures the interesting social, political, economic and cultural forces which interplay in how the Tube has developed over time. From a mash of private railways to a conglomerate of public transport. Awards and advances have been racked up over the years. Behind all of this, there is this incredible sense of connection. How a person and people connect to their city. How this connection creates a relationship between a person and their home. It’s astonishing to witness how time has shaped this transportation operation and how I take for granted the incredibly energy that has been and is required to keep it up, to permit me to stay ‘connected’.

Now, to the friendship part. I am a LOT of energy. Trust me. My friends have bared witness to this often and yesterday was no exception. From the moment ‘hi’ to the end of the day I am bringing brash and sassy. And it is amazing to have that space, to connect. What is a Tube good for except to connect people to one another so they may connect to each other? This, I will leave as an open quest. I study housing and how people create/co-create home. For me, there is an underpinning which is permissible because of incredible systems of human movement, individuals and in mass, which allows for friendship to be both possible and probable and powerfully purposeful. And life to have purpose, to have value for me, must have joy and Adventure…

Below, Jen and Edgar. This picture captures the essence of their Spirit of Selfie Awesomeness. And thank you: for having the Courage to walk through the park, arm in arm, for getting lost for 30 seconds when we went straight instead of right, for laughing all the way from 55 Broadway and for generally allowing me to be ridiculous without feeling ridicule. #selfiesof15

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3. Towards Adventure

Adventure. That is what I feel when all the barriers to being are off. It is this unwavering sense that you are exactly who you are, exactly where you are and doing exactly what you mean to do, always. Adventure is safe. Safe in knowing that things are turning out for the best, always. Safe in knowing that the sun rises and sets and you can do anything you’d like with today. So go. Go and play. Laugh as much as possible. Be a little random. Take the stairs instead of the lifts all the time. Stop in one of your favourite coffee shop on the way home for a second cup. Because one of the greatest lessons I have learned from my time in London is that adventure is around every corner. From the buildings, to the people, from the food to the drink. From the vibrant arts to the slow walks in Hyde Park. From the top of buildings to the seats of classrooms. From time to time, take a ‘time-out’ and Adventure. Perhaps, one day, you will find Adventure isn’t just out there…it’s within you. However far you’d like to Dream you can Do.

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My best, always,

Zach

5 small reminders…to stay grounded…in a global city…at a global university.

I…

I want to write. I need to write. I am an academic. It’s what I am supposed to do. I’m supposed to write. I’m a student. I’m a PhD student, in the middle of a large university, in the centrality of a global city. Perfect. I know where I am at. I know some of the identities I get to make a claim on. I know I am here, and I know I am writing because I believe in words. I am a writer because I believe words have power, they have an energy. The power and energy of words is significant. Power and energy and the words which inscribe and express are like the people who use them, who leverage the written and the spoken, the contested and the debatable. I know the power and energy of words is significant because I have used words my whole life. I have used words my whole life to express, to explain, to explore, to understand. I want to write. I need to write. I am an academic. That’s what I am supposed to do.

I have been sitting a lot recently. I have been sitting at home, I have been sitting at coffee shops, the usual haunts. I have been sitting a lot, grappling with what has been swirling around me. I have been sitting, so I can try to find some stillness. I have been sitting a lot recently. I have been sitting at the window. I have been sitting at the gym. I have been sitting at the table, talking to my friends. And I have been listening. I have been sitting and I have been listening. I have been listening, not with my ears but with my heart. I have been sitting and I have been listening from a space in my soul. And I have been trying. I have been trying and I have been sitting and I have been listening.

And the words are a lot. When you are a writer, and you sit a lot, and you listen a lot, I think you start to feel a lot. And often when you feel a lot it can get kind of sort of difficult to know, sometimes, where you are sitting, and what you are listening to, and what you are hearing. And I have been listening a lot and I have been thinking a lot about what I have been hearing. And I have been hearing a lot and feeling a lot. It’s a lot. And I have been retreating a lot. I have been sitting a lot and writing a lot and reading a lot and thinking a lot and retreating a lot. I have been retreating and quieting a lot.

And I have come to 5 small reminders. These 5 small reminders are for a world which doesn’t need my ten-cents, my privilege, my aggrandising. These 5 reminders, in no particular order, are as much for me. I share them because I am permitted, for any number or reasons, to believe in my words. I am an academic. I am an educationalist. I am a writer. I am a thinker. I am one, of many, who have trust that what I offer I offer because it means something to me. That’s how I live, like life means something to me. Like the lives of others means something to them. And that we have only to write, to listen, to sit, to hear, to share, to be…

1. The world is a complex place, filled with complex space. Appreciate its beauty.

2. Spend your time as you would spend your fortune, for its expansion of experience. Appreciate your beauty.

3. Diversity of thought and opinion can lead to an unfolding that doesn’t have a predictable outcome. Appreciate the beauty of unfolding.

4. Care deeply, sit quietly, listen fully, and allow totally. Appreciate the allowing part…it’s important.

5. More than being right, than being first, than being an independent thinker, being here has taught me that I need a team…a group…a tribe…a family to keep calm and carry on through every day.

Appreciate that others will show up for you like you show up for them.

I want to write. I need to write. I am an academic. But mostly, I want to Live. I want to Live fully.

Live fully.

My very best, always

Zach

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Taking a Holiday Home.

I know, it’s crazy, but I feel inspired to talk holidays and travel. After all, the world goes spinning on and oh what a delight it is to be moving on such an adventure!

Step 1: Please, take a Holiday.

It isn’t about being cliche or cute or whatever. It’s about balance. It’s about harmony. It’s about not having to always be ‘On’ 24/7/365. Travel has taught me,well, everything I know beyond the really amazing home I grew up in. I just kind of sort of wanted to keep that going throughout my life. I wanted to create that sense of goodness and wellbeing always. This always wanting to feel those same amazing feelings I had as a kid meant I’d have to keep learning, keep appreciating, keep journeying and keep constantly inspired by exploring the world. So I did.  Along the way I learned a lot of new, and sometimes, not so knew ideas. One of the most important ideas I’ve encountered so far is sometimes, doing nothing, is the greatest self-gift anyone could ask for.

Step 2: Early on…

Early on I was hesitant to travel. Now, you might think it’s funny that I left the US for London with this great spirit of adventure. The great spirit of adventure soon faced self-created realities of coffee talks and river walks. Alongside being a student and balancing finances was and is this constant sense that there is still more to see and do and I can do it, so I should…I must…lest I miss out…oh, FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out), how I appreciate thee.

Even with FOMO, part of harmony for me is being able to travel when the chance arises. Many times, it is my friends who are staying in nice spaces in exotic places. From time to time they will invite me along. Sometimes it is to share a room, a couch, whatever…I’M SO THERE! Other times I pull up a seat outside a coffee shop and hang out with people I’ve known from 5 minutes to 5 years. Always, for me, moving from space to space and place to place is not only part of how I learn, it is part of who I am. I Love gathering the fruits and veggies of people and place and space. This seems almost engrained in me. From early early on in my life I knew I would be nomadic. I was never done, never finished and never bored. But that is another more introvert-like tale for another day. HERE, I am sharing just a bit of what I’ve been able to see/do since leaving jolly ol’ England on 06 December…

Step 3: Create your own end-of-term date

For me, school term closed a week early. I boarded a tube to Heathrow Terminal 5, boarded a plane to San Diego, California. Then a train and then an a plane and finally an automobile. By and by I watched the singing and the dancing and the festivities unfold. Landing I quickly moved into my parent’s home. From home I gathered my things together to take a train ride up the California Coast to San Francisco. From San Francisco I went back to San Diego and drove up to Palm Springs than over to Marina Del Rey in Los Angeles. I wasn’t in a hurry. I was slowing down. I was stopping for coffee. I was stopping for good meals. I was stopping for restoration. I was starting to feel restored.

Step 4: Restoration

Restoration takes guts. It isn’t glorious to call a ‘time-out’. It isn’t some great epiphany of knowledge to learn and know, right now feels like a good time to take a break. I know. But I Love that I know myself well enough to stop when I feel I should. I feel a lot. I think, like a lot of people in my position, from the moment my eyes open til the moment I fall asleep. In between I am trying to think through some cool stuff and not so cool stuff. But always, always, always, I am harmonising efforting and doing with quieting and attending to my internal happy-meter. Travel is restorative. Travel is like active yoga, you discern and do but you don’t worry about it…you just go.

Step 5: Settling in and settling down

If I can take a second to make a request, it would be this. Please, from time to time, Turn Off. Turn off the TV, the cell-phone, the pagers (I know it’s 2014 but pagers are coming back…I can feel it). Turn off the lights, turn off the talking. Turn off the doing. Turn off. Turn off the crazy, turn off the bombardment of more and more and more. Turn off trying to grow the number of things that can be accomplished in a single hour. Turn off the number of life-achievements you keep trying to add to your already impressive collection of good vibes. Turn off the want. Turn off the conditional need to accumulate without knowing why you are doing so. And I ask this because, as I have traveled, and as I have accumulated memories and trinkets and friendships and lovers and knowledge and all these things…I have learned…Step 6.

Step 6:

“We are all just walking each other home.” -Ram Dass

PS- Some pictures from my travels!!!

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With Love and Appreciation,

Z