I first learned of Mindvalley in late 2011. This was soon after I’d started reading works by Seth Godin, Gary Vaynerchuk, and others.
While on Twitter, Vishen’s profile (founder of Mindvalley) showed up as a follow suggestion. Long story short, within a few months I quit my job at AT&T. Applied to Mindvalley and flew half way across the world from Atlanta to Kuala Lumpur to begin the adventure in May 2012.
Now, almost 2 years later – as I open another chapter – I’d like to share some stories and life lessons.
I applied to Mindvalley for a blogger position. But, given my work experience I was offered a project manager role for a new and upcoming project – Mindvalley Academy. I took the role. And after launching Academy with the amazing team behind it, I changed my role to a copywriter.
The last two years have been an incredible ride filled with adventure, discovery, and growth. There were highs and lows, ups and downs, laughs and tears. I am grateful for them all. They have allowed me to know peace, joy, and love that I did not believe I was capable of – maybe because I didn’t love myself. As the saying goes, “I had to go to that place, to get to this one.”
In the last few months, for the first time, I sought out professional help from a coach and then an intuitive healer. Though both proved helpful to some extent – I still believe that in the end any real change or impact must come from oneself. Others may be able to guide the process but the effort and discovery of Truth must derive from your own commitment, decision, and action toward the journey within. I learned that happiness is a choice, as is misery. We are the creators of our fate, masters of our destiny. But for the last 2 years I had developed the habit of living in misery. To change this I learned would take persistent, conscious effort.
First few months at Mindvalley were full of sheer excitement and enjoyment for the moment. It was the first time living abroad by myself. I was genuinely excited. I felt as though I was living my life’s dream. I fell in love. Traveled to new countries. Work was good and the people were amazing. I stepped out of my comfort zone at times. Tried new things. Took some risks.
But, somewhere along the way I gave up. I gave up on my dreams. I started to compare myself. Quite often. Thinking that I must be like others around me to be happy and succeed. That I must become this or do that because everyone else here is doing so. Comparing myself to peers I would constantly self-sabotage. What should I be doing? I need to do something else. All of this created more anxiety and stress.
I went through a period of about 15 months of living in fear and anxiety – blaming, complaining, gossiping, doubting, and resenting. I was hopeless. I felt like I had something to prove. To my dad. To the company. To the world. Not realizing it all stemmed out of a lack of appreciation, understanding, and love for my own True nature. I expected perfection. Of myself. Of my bosses. Of the company.
I hereby extend my most sincere gratitude and apology to anyone in the last 2 years who may have put up with my shit – you know who you are.
It wasn’t until my breakup in December 2013 that it really hit me. I was faced with the biggest and most difficult, yet most liberating lesson of my life so far – letting go and accepting uncertainty.
I began to see, “Hey, maybe it’s not this place or the people so much as it’s me and my own stories”. Maybe it’s some story I got in my head. I looked inward. I meditated in silence for 10 days. And continued meditating and practicing yoga daily ever since. I sought to be happy from within. Instead of always seeking excitements beyond myself.
How to Have the Ultimate Experience at Work and In Life
When you want something more you can’t enjoy what you already have. Stop wanting things to be different. Just enjoy what you already have. See the beautiful things that are already there.
Any company is as weak as its weakest link and it will always not only benefit you, but your managers to empower you, to do what you want to do, to become who you want to become. Seek their guidance.
Don’t spread toxicity.
Don’t complain, blame, gossip, resent, etc. If you can’t – give yourself time to do so or get out. Do not complain about your own limited self-imposed view of reality. Propose and present ideas of growth, venture, and new possibilities for the company and it’s employees. If there are genuine concerns or facts then by all means get them addressed.
Don’t take yourself too seriously. Seriously.
If you work at a place like Mindvalley you’re already in an incredible place. Appreciate it and enjoy it. Take risks. Be bold. Get uncomfortable. You haven’t much to lose. Do things that scare you. Practice things that interest you.
Travel often – without expectations or plans.
Do your research and prepare but be open to serendipity.
Remember that nothing is permanent.
This is not the beginning nor the end. You’ll only be here for a while – maybe a few years, maybe 20, but not forever so live like it’s not eternal.
Expect progress not perfection.
The World’s Greatest Workplace doesn’t mean perfect – but darn close to it. See leaders as humans, not saints, though wise they may be, they are not perfect. They too are human – prone to making mistakes as you and me.
See things as happening for you not to you.
Don’t label life’s so called troubles and problems as bad. See them as what they are. Change. Progress. Growth. Uncertainty. Beautiful things that are a part of life.
See yourself as equal to everyone else. Because you are.
You may have a different title or pay but begin to see yourself and others as the same level. You may have more experience or skill in some areas and they, in others. And this is how you can contribute. Remember, you are already here – congrats, you’re good enough – and always have been. That’s what matters. Focus on that.
Give. Give of yourself.
Be selfless in what you do as much as you have the capacity to. Give with your time. Give with your smile. Give with your work. Give with a genuine how are you. Give with your heart. Give with your integrity. Give nevertheless give.
Know that the work you do makes an impact. Never forget this.
You may not always agree with everything at your workplace but the work that you do makes an impact. Remember this.
Get out of the bubble.
It’s good to step away from the norm every once in a while to gain a new perspective. Make friends outside of any company you work at as well.
Live your Truth.
You don’t have to believe anything – but if what you believe isn’t giving you peace and getting you where you want to go – then question what you believe. Life is going to test you. Mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually. And when it does, I hope you do not shrink to your small ego. And even if you do I hope you move on from that too.
Be happy without a purpose.
We have desires and needs. The need to know. To plan and control our “future”. Wanting to know where you’ll end up or what’s your purpose. But if you’re not sure right now – instead of beating yourself up trying to figure out your purpose – try this instead: Let go. Let go of your need to know, control, and figure everything out. You don’t have to wait until you know your “purpose” to start being happy – remember this. And instead just do what you already know you enjoy – for the sake of doing it. Not to be an author, speaker, celebrity, blogger, entrepreneur, etc.
Let go of all the labels. And just allow yourself to be.
Accept and understand yourself for who and how you are right now. There’s nothing you need to fix because there’s nothing wrong with you – if you’re ready to accept this Truth. Improvement and progress are inevitable but don’t allow your desire to be “ready” to limit your actions.
Just to continue should be your purpose. When you do something, just to do it should be your purpose.Shunryu Suzuki
Don’t give up on your dreams.
You have dreams – I know you do – things you know you were meant to do. But some of us are afraid to even speak of these. I have been guilty of this. You may think you’ll be fake, phony. Thinking you’re not “ready”. You’re not “good enough”. You’re afraid of what others will think of you.
Remember – whether you can do something or be something has very little to do with what society, your parents, bosses, teachers, friends or anyone else has said. These are things of the past and the past does not exist. What exists is what you tell yourself now. If you have a dream – please convince yourself first and I promise you will be unstoppable.
For what it’s worth it’s never too late, to be whatever you want to be. There’s no time limit. Start whenever you want. You can change or stay the same. There are no rules to this thing. There are laws, laws of nature. But beyond this, there are only man-made rules. Ideas and perceptions of how things are or should be. All presented by humans.
You can make the best or the worst of it. And I hope you make the best of it. I hope you see things that startle you. I hope you feel things you never felt before. I hope you meet people with a different point of view. I hope you live a life you’re proud of. And if you find that you’re not, I hope you have the strength to start all over again.Benjamin Button
Live a life that embodies the Truths you’ve come to know.
Not everyone has to be an entrepreneur or a business man or a doctor or a teacher. The world will always need artists – writers, singers, actors, painters, designers, speakers, poets, dancers – just as it will always demand doctors, engineers, teachers, entrepreneurs, and astronauts.
Some people were born to build radical companies. Some have an ear for music. Some inspire. Some are artists. Some swim. Some understand people. Some are builders. Some make apps. Some capture. Some are travelers. Some are inventors. Some know cars. Some know Rumi. Some are mothers. Some are lovers. And some people dance.
Keep dancing and become who you were born to be.
These words I have laid here before you – are me living my dreams.
Thank you, I hope they serve you – if even in the smallest means.