“You’re an early morning riser, huh?”
I was skeptical of answering. It was my third or fourth day in Jamaica and most of the experiences I had with the men of this island screamed grab your pepper spray. I wanted to be left alone and to enjoy the morning weather and silence before the pool festivities began.
“I sure am, the mornings are my me-time.” I softly laid down my hint but he didn’t take the bait. I’m quite thankful he didn’t, because our little 30-minute conversation would change me for the better.
Kieran, the pool cleaning guy, wasn’t like his coworker from yesterday morning. He didn’t cross any boundaries. He didn’t offer to show me a good time. He simply cleaned our swim-out pool while providing great conversation and giving me something to ponder on for the next few weeks.
Kieran was born and raised in Jamaica but schooled in the US. He won a green-card lottery, packed up his belongings and attended school in North Carolina for both his undergraduate and graduate degrees in Actuary Science. He scored himself a well-paying gig and began to live the American Dream until the American Dream no longer served him.
“Please do not take offense, but all you American’s do is work. I can attest that you guys definitely play hard, but the balance between that and working is practically non-existent. We don’t live like that in Jamaica. I would work 12 hour days, and management and different departments would still complain that I was not producing enough. I started to hate life in America.”
We discussed why he didn’t explore other options such as looking for a new role or moving states, and his answer was pretty simple yet completely relatable.
“I know how I like to feel. Nothing I did in America wouldn’t contribute to that. So I moved home 5 years ago. In America, you’re trained to chase after goals, check off things from your bucket list, accomplish silliness just to say you did it. I can’t live that way. I need to feel good. If I don’t feel good with all of these nice things, do they even really count?”
Our conversation ended when he moved onto the next section of the pool but not before asking, “Be honest, how do you want to feel?”
At that point, I couldn’t answer the question. Not because I don’t know, because I do. I want to feel good, obviously. But I’ve never thought about it in detail. I’ve never gotten into the specifics outside of chasing that feeling. Until now.
I want to feel like I want to work on myself,
rather than feel like I need to.
I want to feel complete in my own skin and feel like I have a good grasp on this mind of mine.
I want to continuously acknowledge that happiness is within my reach, and feel that shit every single day.
I want to feel confident in my passion and have my actions and motives match.
I want to feel secure in my purpose and align my services, products, and whatever else I have to offer alongside it.
I want to wake up feeling blessed for every single thing and being within my life and move
in ways that ooze gratitude and has me vibrating on a frequency of peace and calm.
I want to feel scared and excited at the same time every time I choose to bet on myself.
I want to feel whole. Whole as fuck.
Prioritizing how I want to feel has become my new thing since that trip. I’ve traded in checking off to-do lists of things I need to accomplish, for checking in with myself to make sure my actions and decisions are in alignment with how I want to feel every single day. It’s been a little difficult because we all know how much I love to-do lists, but it’s been doing something for my peace and heart and that I can quite explain. All I know is that it feels good.
So I challenge you all to try and do the same, but first, tell me in the comments, how do you want to feel?