Why Would I Not Surrender?

For a long time I hated the word and concept of surrender.

Like probably most people, it made my mind immediately flash images of white flags, weaklings, and it would bring up this awful feeling that I was going to have to sacrifice or give up something that was important to me.

Ick.

Even in a spiritual sense it referred to this idea of simply giving up my own personal will and desires in order to satisfy God or do what's seemingly best for everyone else (but not myself). As much as I have deep respect for other people and the creative force of the universe, giving up my power still seemed like a strange, undesirable, and unintelligent move on my part. It seemed like I was still giving something up that was meant for me to take responsibility for.

But lately I've been developing a new conception of surrender. And it's got me real excited.

My new definition of surrender is to align my intentions, words, and actions with three things:

  1. What's best for me
  2. What's best for everyone else
  3. What's best for the evolution of consciousness and the universe (God's will)

With this new definition in place, it makes absolutely perfect sense to surrender. There is really nothing to lose, and everything to gain. The only sacrifice I'm making is giving up choosing actions that will bring about unnecessary suffering and a less desirable reality for one of the three parties above (myself, others, or the universe).

This is still a higher level conception, but it opens me to the possibility that there is a world I can create for myself where fulfilling my deepest desires also fulfills the deepest desires of the people around me, which also create the most brilliant evolution of consciousness that we can conceive. I imagine that the more joyous and vibrant I become, I will naturally have a desire to share my overflow of goodness with those around me, and like waves compounding and building upon each other we will wash over the entire universe with good vibes and real, tangible change. Sounds fun, eh?

And the most beautiful thing about this way of living is that it all comes down to this: follow your personal delight. That's it. It's that simple - literally do what lights you up the most in every moment, and you will purify yourself until you're overflowing with love, saturating the cosmos.

So why doesn't everyone live this way?

Perhaps because it's too damn simple. Perhaps because we love complexity and confusion and suffering too damn much. Perhaps because we're so damn convinced that we're meant to always and forever plagued to experience the realities of imperfection, sin, disorder, and disharmony. Perhaps it just doesn't seem like a realistic or attainable way to experience of life.

Okay. I get that. Cool.

But now I'll ask you this: why not?

Seriously.

Why not at least wake up with the intention every day to live this way? Doesn't that make more sense than waking up with an intention to live in disharmony? Or to live with no intention at all and just aimlessly wander through life?

Sure, this might take a certain level of detachment from the outcome. You can't get upset if at the end of the first day trying this, things didn't work out perfectly smooth. Like most anything, I imagine it's a process that takes time and effort to master, by shedding layers of engrained belief and unproductive thought patterns preventing us from experience a more harmonious reality. It could take weeks, months, years, or even lifetimes. Who knows?

I won't try to convince you of anything. Because really, I don't know anything for sure.

But neither do you. You're clueless too.

So in this world where, really, we know nothing for sure (everything you think you KNOW is almost certainly a belief - just follow it down to it's root), I myself choose to experiment with this new simple way of living.

Why? Because it feels good to me and seems so damn simple and crazy enough that it might contain more than a grain of truth. I like to believe that life can be stupidly simple. And I just plain like crazy ideas.

I'll let my actions, my progress, and my overall experience of life speak to the results of my experiment. And perhaps a few more words here and there too. :-)

YOUR TURN: What do you think about my idea of surrender? Does it resonate? Is it total nonsense? Share your feedback and your own perspective in the comments below.

My First Rap Recording

I did it.

I wrote my first rap song and recorded myself over a track for the first time.

This was inspired by my friend Tommy Jia's #16barChallenge he invited me to join. You can hear his recording here.

I dedicated this song to my soul brother Max Mendoza, who recently left this earth. It felt good to be able to write and record this tribute to a man who lived such an incredible life.

I love you brother.

Without further ado, here it is.

Today it begins...

My First Rap Recording Dropping In One Week

It's happening: by next Wednesday I will post my first ever recording of a rap song.

I don't know yet if I'll do a cover or write a few of my own verses, but once I do record it I'll write a blog post and include the link.

My Deepest Fear

My whole life I've been deeply scared to share my authentic voice with others. Especially when it comes to singing, or even great, rapping.

I've been scared to be seen. Scared to be heard. Scared to expose my weird, quirky, unedited self.

So most of my life, I've kept quiet.

When I was a kid I remember watching a video my parents had recorded of me speaking and I thought my voice sounded so ugly that I started crying and ran out of the room.

It was an incredibly traumatic experience.

But ever since I can remember, I wanted to be a rap artist. I wanted to inspire the world with my voice and my words. I wanted to share the joy and love that I felt deep in my heart.

For years I kept this dream buried deep inside of me. And for years, it collected dust. More recently, I've felt like it has been literally rotting away inside of me.

But no more. I'm putting an end to my silence.

Feeling Safe to Express

I used to write stories when I was little. I loved it, and it came so easily. My mom always told me I could be a writer.

But for almost a dozen years, I stopped writing altogether, except for school papers. I was bullied so badly for what seemed to just be sharing my loving, joyful, quirky self that I stopped expressing my uniquely creativity voice, choosing instead to only share my heart and soul with a few close friends. It didn't feel safe to go beyond that.

Over the past few years I've opened back up my writing again, little by little. I've started several blogs, shared my writings with my peers in college classes, and more recently I started speaking up more courageously in public settings. I was building my courage, word by word.

But singing and rapping are even bigger beasts. To me, there's something so intimate, so vulnerable about sharing the full range of my voice that it feels like I'm undressing my soul for all to see. And for the longest time, I'd been too scared to do that. It felt like suicide.

That's no longer true.

I'm stronger now. I realize I have a powerful energy and message to share that so many people can benefit from and be inspired by. And I'm willing to let it be imperfectly human and continue to evolve and improve.

I'm ready to share. There's nothing more holding me back. It's time.

What Inspired This

This afternoon I had an amazing coaching call with Mary Catherine Shurett. I've never felt such a strong connection with a coach before...as the call progressed I felt my heart opening wider and my soul singing louder.

She held such a deeply loving and powerful space for me to express this childhood desire. I felt more excited and open and energized than I've felt in a REALLY long time...possibly ever.

And from that momentum, I decided that I was ready to share my rapping with the world. So I created the challenge for myself to express this desire within a week.

I'm filled with equal parts overwhelming excitement and super constricting fear. And I feel like I'm somehow strangely holding both states in my consciousness at the same time with a certain peace between the two. I'm not resisting either. I'm simply acknowledging both feelings, and moving forward one more step at a time.

I feel like this is just the beginning of #alifetothemax :-)

I'm All In

I just jumped off a cliff. And I'm learning to fly on the way down.

A couple days ago I was weighing a big decision in my life. It was the decision to go work another 40+ hours a week full-time job or to make the leap into becoming a full-fledge entrepreneur and freelance writer.

I chose the latter.

Now, don't get me wrong, I have absolutely nothing against working a full-time job. I was highly considering accepting a position as a copywriter for a really cool company. It payed decent, the culture was awesome, the work would have been easy for me, and the environmental stress would have been relatively low.

On almost every front, it seemed liked the perfect opportunity. And I fully believe I could have made it work well for me, and it would have served as an excellent stepping stone to greater dreams.

But I didn't choose it.

Why? There was one crucial piece missing: my heart just wasn't into the work.

I couldn't get excited about writing essentially the same pieces of content, over and over, and not building towards something greater. The writing I would have done there would have been a waste of my true gifts. It would have been easy work, but it wouldn't have been challenging or meaningful. I just knew that my head wouldn't pop off the pillow in the morning.

So what am I doing instead?

I'm working on my own terms. I'm starting by working with an entrepreneur who I absolutely respect, admire, and love being around. He has a few projects he needed help with, and after working with him for just two days, I was sold. I can't count the amount of times I laughed and smiled while working together, and I left both days feeling way better than when I arrived. He's extremely intelligent, kind, and has already created successful companies. He'll serve as the perfect mentor for me.

Not only that, but his main company is one that I wholeheartedly believe in and would love to opportunity to help him build to the scale he envisions for it. I'm smiling ear-to-ear just thinking about that company. It effing rocks.

The catch? I won't get paid until I can prove that my writing is bringing in more sales. I fully trust he'll be fair with me (I've actually been friends with him for over a year), but there's no guarantee on how quickly that will happen. And other than that, I've currently got just one gig paying me a very small amount for my writing, so I'll need to find and secure any additional freelance writing gigs to bring in money, which I'm not too familiar with yet.

So why does this decision matter? Why is it such a big deal to me?

I'm going to be honest with you. I'm not in the best place financially. I've been racking up a good amount of debt this past year, taking loans from my parents. I even started running a balance on my credit card for the first time in my life when I decided to stop taking loans from them, as a way to light a fire under my ass and make this problem more real to me.

Taking that full-time job would have plugged the hole of debt I've been creating. It would have allowed me to feel safe and comfortable taking small steps forward, and I'd still have had time to take on a freelance project or two on the side to start building toward my ultimate vision. And if the timing of the opportunity had fell just a couple weeks ago, I probably would have taken it.

But the thing is, I'm no longer the same person I was just over a week ago. Ever since Max's passing, I've been reevaluating how I live my life. I've gotten really honest with myself on how I've been playing small and dimming my light. I realized I've been holding back and making excuses for why I'm not living lifestyle and making the impact I truly desire.

I've become very present with the fact that I honestly have no idea how much time I have left to live my biggest dreams. And on top of that I realized that the only thing that's been holding me back from doing so has been, well....me.

I'm not willing to put off my dreams any longer. Not one more day.

I'm an entrepreneur at heart. I love the freedom to choose when and how I work. I love the idea that I can contribute to the world in a meaningful way through the creation of a business, and I believe I have just as much potential as say Steve Jobs or Elon Musk. And I love that my income potential increases infinite-fold when I take full responsibility over my career path.

Doing anything else feels like betraying my heart.

With that said, I'm now fully committed to creating financial stability for myself over the next few of months before my credit cards hit their limits. It's do or die.

Let's friggin do this.