morning jams

Steady Morning Birthday Jam // Monument - Robyn + Röyksopp

Tomorrow is my 28th birthday. I have changed since last September 24th. I change everyday, as everyone does. I continue learning lessons and growing through challenges and goals met, or not met. I often wonder what this path is that I'm on, if there even is a path, or if we're all floating. The path feels real to me though. It feels real because when I'm on a solid one, I can sense it. Roots form. I become grounded in the foundation of life, and yet can move freely. The chaos subsides and my vision clears. 

My friend Aly introduced me to this song and the lyrics and the video hit a sensitive spot in my chest. I thought, "what is it that I will leave behind?" 

The idea of the Phoenix has been an ever expanding notion in my life. The process of rebirth, and discovering yourself again and again. It can definitely be a bit terrifying to find yourself in a place of questioning, wondering why you no longer feel fulfilled where you once did, in your vocation or with your hobbies. Many questions come into play. What will others think? Will I lose friends? Will I lose opportunities? Why am I not grateful for the things I have? Am I lost? 

Generally I think of it as one big enclosed space that I'm agreeing to be inside of. Imagine life as a grocery store, strolling past the same things every day. You make your slow round through the store and every time you come past the candy isle you think "amazing, I love chocolate, I'm so excited to have chocolate again," and then you pass the vegetables and think, "I'd rather have chocolate right now but this is good for me so I'll have some of this too." After a while people start arguing and you avoid them. Then the store becomes a little busier. Some people are confused by all the options, and others don't move from their one part of their one isle. It's simple enough to avoid, and you even try helping a few distinguish what they like from what they don't like. Eventually the rounds begin to feel repetitive. You think, "I like chocolate, right? I do. So I will have it. That makes sense." But the effects have changed. Everything begins to taste the same, and suddenly you become aware of an emptiness in your body that has nothing to do with your belly, which is full from trying to eat new things that will make you feel good. The easy answer to someone outside is to simply leave the grocery store. 

This is much easier said that done. You have no idea what could be outside, or if you'll think "I never should have left, it was comfortable in there, and I had everything I needed." Comfort can become very uncomfortable, because ultimately, you are no longer learning anything new. 

Do I want to leave a legacy of laziness? Of only just making it? Or will I see myself climb mountains? I want to walk through the fog and discover what's on the other peaks, instead of staying on the same one for fear of no longer being comfortable. This can be done in many ways.

Another good example is my hair. I'm letting it grow. I used to have all kinds of different styles. Half buzzed, mohawk, long on top, bleached parts, bob cut, etc. Every time I announced that I was going to change my hairstyle people would say, "don't!! It looks so good the way it is!" and I would do it anyway, and the chorus would persist during the next round. Eventually I stopped talking about it and just did what I felt the impulse to do, knowing it would always grow back. Life is like this. Just because others get attached to the way they identify with you in no way means you should. If you have any urge to change, why not see what happens.

I say all of this as a note-to-self. A good reminder in beginning this brand new personal year. 




STEADY MORNING JAM (and meditation!) RATATAT - CHERRY

Hey guys. There's something I wanna talk about. 

As of late, my fella and I have decided that taking a break in the morning to meditate could lend itself to our lives in a pretty positive way. Being a sensitive human is a cool gift, but as all other sensitive humans know, it's a thing that requires maintenance, attention, and love. This can come in many forms, whether it's

  • treating oneself to a home cooked meal
  • having an illuminating conversation
  • making love
  • watching a movie
  • watering and talking to your plants
  • stretching and strengthening
  • enjoying an expansive view
  • picking fresh fruits or vegetables
  • feeling grass or sand or cool water between toes
  • maintaining eye contact
  • writing in a journal
  • sharing a quote or idea
  • creating art
  • feeling the sun on skin or drops of rain
  • spending time with animals
  • hearing a song you forgot you loved
  • crying
  • eating with intention
  • walking
  • watching the world move...

...this list is making me happy, if you have anything to contribute to it please let me know and I'll make another post of everyones ideas!!

ANYway. What I'm trying to get to is this. There are many, many ways to accomplish self-maintenance, but beginning with a simple sit in silence is one of the most beautiful introductions to a steady day that's ever been invented. There's definitely a reason that meditation has passed the test of time, and even gained popularity in recent years. There is a science to it, as well as a deeply personal spiritual value. It covers many angles and truly establishes balance within our Selves. The "Selves" meaning the mental, emotional, and spiritual. This is the holy trinity of everyone, and is within us all. 

Phil and I decided to start at five minutes. I haven't regularly meditated for years, and there is something of a process to undergo when you're first starting out or reintegrating. Lots of old stagnant energies get shaken awake in order to go up and out, clearing your senses more and more. These come in the form of emotions and actions, and should be treated with understanding and compassion. From feeling elated to feeling the bluest of the blue, meditation is meant to gently shake off the old dirt and mud to reveal the jewel beneath. It can be scary, exciting, and eye opening. Having a partner to embark on this path with, though not required, is always welcome. 

Five minutes a day makes a world of difference. Yes, the blinders fall away. Yes, it can be a challenge. Yes you will awaken to things that may conflict with your standard way of living, but you will always find out why, and you will always grow from it, so long as patience is given a chance. Eventually the world will seem small, and you will feel even smaller, and infinitely huge all at once. That's called Cosmic Consciousness, by the way. Pretty cool stuff. 

Just to emphasize how little of a commitment five minutes is, I bestow a song upon your day. This is an old favorite, and is (perfectly) just over five minutes long. Give it a listen while you update your pintrest, scroll through twitter, or check facebook and watch how quickly the song ends. That was over five minutes of your life which you for whatever reason may often think you don't have. Try to not flake out on your own growth. Offer yourself five minutes to med. You don't need anything but your own ass to sit on. Seriously. That's all it takes. Sit. Breathe. Use a mantra if you'd like, which can be anything from "love" to "Ohm" or whatever else you find inspiring and beautiful. I know Christians who meditate on "God" or "Jesus" and other people who use no mantra at all. Let your eyes drift closed, and simply be. Thoughts are fine, scratching your arm is fine, checking the time is fine, making notes in your notebook is fine. Don't stress about what is "right" or not, just go with it. Whatever "it" is to you. If you find a method that works, make it a part of your life. Eventually you may want to extend your practice, or it will start happening all on its own! I'd be surprised if it didn't, actually. 

Enjoy the track, guys! May the force be with you (because it already is). 

Just as a side note, I'm 100% always open to questions or comments. Feel free to leave a comment here, or send me a private email. :)




STEADY MORNING JAM // JEWEL - JUPITER

Guys. I can't fully describe what this did to me as a kid. I was so floored by Jewel's first album, then when this happened I nearly exploded into some sort of state of self-awareness. There are several things that cause one to grow into who they are. Interactions, conversations, moments of fear, falling in love, walking through life's fire...and sometimes a song or two.