It’s the time of year when days become exceedingly short here in Seattle.

It is also the time of year that I commute with crows.

Sunrise performs her morning stretch, spreads her arms, fingers reaching west. I drive, rivers of crows above.

When I reverse this evening, the black birds will usher me home.

I wonder if my fellow car-bound commuters make meaning from these messengers as I do. Life itself the victory already won.


The World's Greatest Workout

Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you: The World’s Best Workout. Here’s how you do it:

First choose your favorite 5 minute song. Or choose three 3 minute songs. Or a 20 minute playlist.

Next: Dance.

Then do some squats.

Dance more.

Do some push-ups. If a push-up from the floor is hard for you, do them on the back of your couch or counter or wall.

Dance again.

Squat.

Dance!

Push-up!

Repeat forever or until the song ends or until you stop having fun.

Please note: As proven in this video, the ability to dance well is not required in order to preform The World’s Best Workout.

I wanna see videos of you all doing this! I mean it!


Creative Responses > Destructive Reactions

When life throws you a challenge, do act in a creative way or a destructive way?

I try to choose creative as often as possible, because it benefits me, my family, friends and everybody around me and has ripple effects into the greater consciousness.

In order to this I have to know what my destructive behaviors are and what their creative counterparts are.

When I react to challenges in a destructive manner, I feverishly eat exorbitant amounts ice cream and potato chips, I ruminate, I talk shit, I stop exercising, I get grumpy with people I love, I pay my bills late.

On the other hand, when I respond creatively in the face of challenges, I notice my breath, I seek advice, I read and listen to great thinkers, I clean my house and work in the yard, I move my body, I get out of my own circumstance by doing something for someone else.

The goal is to have a toolbox filled with enough creative solutions to move through even the most challenging situations with grace.

May your creative responses be greater than your destructive reactions!


Reasons To Be Fit #66

When you are fit, you don’t strive to “live your best life.” Instead you are willing to live your whole life. You live life as it is, as it comes. You don’t fear mundane or messy. You don’t need grand adventures to prove you are alive or acclaimed achievements to prove you have worth. You know that if you remain open and true, all the fullness and possibility for your human experience will come to you. At the end, as you descend to dust, as you shoot away on a star, you will marvel and you will gasp, “Oh my! That was it!”


No Thinking While Tired (And Other Rules of Engagement For A Modern Mind)

My mind has a tendency to trespass into anxiety, depression and perseveration, spinning a broken record of worries and critiques.

Years ago I created these rules of engaging with my mind. This morning I wrote them again in my journal.

Whenever I find my mind circling in unproductive ways I check in with myself on the following points, because sometimes mental health is added best by caring for ourselves on the most basic levels.

1) Have I showered? Have I brushed my teeth? Am I wearing clean clothes that are not sweaty gym shorts? If not, I tell myself no more thinking until I clean up.

2) Am I tired? Yes? Stop thinking! Go to bed! If it’s the middle of the day and I can’t take a nap, then I’m simply not allowed to think until I feel rested again, and if that means no thinking for the rest of the day, great!

3) Have I moved my body lately? No? Then I must stop thinking until after I have gone for a walk or yoga-ed or lifted something heavy.

4) Is my belly rumbling? Yes? Get food! Don’t think!

5) Am I feeling disconnected from others? If so, I find that the best way to get over my loneliness is to do something for someone else. I write a letter or cook soup for a friend. I also read books or listen to podcasts or talks given by people I admire.

If you’ve got a brain like mine, remember: No thinking about the purpose of life, no evaluating your worth as a human, no making big decisions until you are clean, rested, moved, satiated and feeling connected to the world around you and to the universe as a whole.