Goals. It’s a word that people throw around all time often without much meaning behind it. What does it mean, though? I always thought it had to be some grand, epic event that I was striving to get to. And it can be, absolutely. But it doesn’t really matter what it is, as long as it matters to you. A goal is something that drives you every day towards a greater sense of self. Big or small, short or long-term.
Photograph taken by Alexis Krukovsky. Taken in Lambertville along the Tow Path during the Spring.
It could be going for a promotion, taking the perfect photograph, or doing something that is outside your comfort zone that will be a victory for only you to recognize. The point is to tie your goal into whatever you are passionate about, and make it fun because then you will actually do it.
It may sound odd or even corny. But just wait until you start planning the goal, and writing down the plan to fulfill it. It changes your entire mindset. No matter how small that shift may be, and you will start to see a change in yourself. It was mind blowing for me. Then you will start to shine brighter than you ever thought possible.
And maybe even Dream again.
Remember when you were a kid, and Snow Days were King. It was the ultimate gift.
However, when you are “an adult”, you forget about that. You forget about playing in the snow, getting dirty, and just having fun. You worry instead about the commute, the potential lost wages, and clean-up of snow.
Photograph taken by Looie Voorhees. Boat sledding at its finest in Bucks County, PA. So much fun.
All of the above are important, to an extent. There is a magic about winter that people forget about. For example, the majestic and serene scene of snow in the trees, this especially true in the woods. Last winter, I participated in a lot of winter activity for the first time in about 8 years. I had forgotten what a spiritual moment it is to experience. As the snow is falling, and you look up into the trees and see the glorious stillness and pristine landscape; it is an unexpected transformative experience.
It is something I cannot begin to describe to you. I am not religious, but I am a spiritual person. I realized something that maybe I was not alone and there is some kind of universal energy. I found that gift in nature.
My life is enormously different than it was two years ago. The reason? Personal growth. I have read so many personal growth books in that time, I could start a section at Barnes and Noble. All of those books I thought were a bunch of new-age, feel-good b.s. (complete with me rolling my eyes at such things). But, I was WRONG. They have changed my life fundamentally.
Stolen from Facebook. I don’t know who, but I love it.
I am a scientist. That is my background, and essentially my faith. I love puzzles, I love questions, and I love figuring out how those two things intertwine.
When it comes to personal, emotional stuff though? I was not so much about that. I like cause and effect, clear and simple. Human emotion is not about cause and effect. It’s about experience and learning. It’s about applying often the b.s. you’ve been through throughout your lifetime, and figuring out how to get past it to live a better life.
Does this sound familiar? I have LIVED this life. The life of hiding, oppressing, and down-right scared life. Everyone’s life is different. I certainly do not know your experiences, but I do know mine. And I think being scared to be someone else, scared to live someone else’s story that you think should be yours, and scared to possibly grow out of that story is real for a lot of people. It was for me.
Fast-forward to now. I am happier than I have EVER been. It was due to discipline, personal growth, and reliance on people close to me. The last one was a big step for me. The other two were easy. Relying on other people, was not. But it was perhaps the single biggest force in my metamorphosis into being a happy, content person. Trust others; however hard it may be.
BE YOU. Even when it is the scariest thing you might ever do.
I have been privileged to be having many amazing and brilliant mentors throughout my lifetime. I have been fortunate enough to have them during every period of my life: high school, college, environmental consulting, paddling, and most recently Arbonne.
One of my Arbonne mentors, Maria Woodford Spillane, and I travelling to a training.
Everyone needs mentors and stable figures in their lives to help guide them through difficult times and decisions, and sometimes the mundane. I have been blessed with an abundance of both since high school. One cannot succeed and expect to get better without guidance and constructive criticism. Some call it tough love; I call it wisdom. All of it is necessary for one to exist and make one better. I am forever in debt to all of the people who have guided me; thank you.
It is the rare movie that connects with you in such a profound, guttural, and personal way that reaches down to your soul in a very real sense. Wild is one of those movies for me.
Photograph taken by Pete Kreiger. A moment of quiet reflection.
This entry is not about the movie. It was just the catalyst of inspiration. I find introspection and relief through nature, and it is often by myself. I feel rooted-an escape from the madness that is life. It’s just you, nature, and your boots.
I like people, and enjoy their company. However, there is a visceral need to be alone and recharge, which brings me clarity of vision. This is when I retreat to my places of peace and I disconnect from others.
I return refreshed, content, and often determined to get things done with new-found purpose.
There is something amazing about Realizing things you thought dictated your life story, and realizing They no longer Matter.
What a freeing thought that is.
And to embrace and accept it as FACT is even bigger.
To be an adult is to be free. From what freedom that is for you to choose.
P.S. Everyone has those thoughts. I don’t care how powerful or your title in life, EVERYONE has those thoughts of imperfection.
There are very few things that touches the soul of all humans on earth like music does.
Maria Woodford at International Blues Challenge 2013 Semi-finals
Music fills me with a passion and sense of self, only resembled when I am on the water. It is a grounding force in my life, and when I can’t get on the water, I search for music and/or nature. I have a few places of reflection and peace I turn to on a a regular basis. The water, nature, music, and writing. On perfect days, they all meld into one magical experience of light and wonder.
Hi all. I am relatively new to blogging, and sharing my internal thoughts and feelings to people is also a relatively new experience for me. I am sure most of you can relate to that. Below is a poem about hiding.
Hiding by Alexis Krukovsky
Life changes in a few small decisions.
This is the amazing Spillane region team that went to the conference in Albany. Photograph taken by Paula Perrault
The biggest decisions that altered my life forever were ones I did not think about. They are learning how to kayak, and later canoe. Then I decided to start my own Arbonne business. I have always loved the water; so paddling was a logical progress, and I finally had the time to do it. My Arbonne business was almost on a whim. I do not really know why I joined Arbonne, but is the best decision I have ever made. I followed my gut that was telling me to pursue both ventures, and the universe has since filled my life with gratitude and joy that I did not think was possible.
Life is a series of choices. Sometimes the decision that might not make sense, but if it is intuitively guided, it is the right one to make. I didn’t even know I was looking for such changes in my life, and yet, I am the happiest I have ever been.
I become instantly still when on the river.
Whitewater canoeing during winter. Photo by Kevin O’Neill
The river is my outlet, my passion, and my place of confidence. Everyone needs to find their own special place in life, and the river is mine.