My Ayahuasca Journey and what you can learn from it.
It’s been a while. I haven’t written to you in a couple of months. I have been so caught up in the crypto space making thousands of dollars without so much as moving a muscle, that I have neglected one of my favorite past times, writing.
It is easy to get caught up in making money when it comes in droves and to be honest sometimes it’s the right thing to do. Especially in a bull market. It’s not always this easy and when it is this easy you have to take advantage of it. The only problem with a money-making mindset is that it often comes at the cost of other things. The other things for me are my family relationships, my community, and my creativity.
Luckily for me, I recently had a reset of sorts. Last month I took a week off of everything to journey down to Mexico and spent 7 days in the jungle with 50 amazing people, crappy wifi, and no air conditioning! I also took Ayahuasca 3x, and if you know anything about this wonderful plant medicine then you know this trip was life-changing.
I could write a whole article on the Ayahuasca itself but today’s article is about what I learned during that week in Mexico.
The biggest takeaway from my journey was that I was the reason for all my “problems”, I use the quotation marks around the word problems because I realize now that my problems are actually signals from the universe about things I need to work on.
For instance one of my signals was the growing chasm between my wife and me. After being together for 23 years and raising 3 kids, we have reached a point where we no longer spend as much time together because our kids are either out of the house or spending 12 hours a day at school due to extracurricular activities. This leaves us with the ability to do whatever we want, not what we have to do for the family. This is not an easy decision after 20 plus years with one person. Both of us can feel the freedom calling us to experience new places, new people, and new relationships. We are only human after all.
I went into the week unsure of what I wanted. In the weeks leading up to my trip, my wife and I spent less and less time together, leaving me to question our future. Thankfully Mama Ayahuasca as she is so affectionately called seems to help you find the answers to your questions. You see Ayahuasca increases the neural activity in the brain’s visual cortex, as well as its limbic system — the region deep inside the medial temporal lobe that’s responsible for processing memories and emotion. Ayahuasca can also quiet the brain’s default mode network, which when shut down allows you to process information at much higher speeds.
This increase in processing power allows you to see information differently. Things that are right in front of you every day are given a new context that helps you see them differently without all the distractions of our default thought network. I noticed my breath slow to what seemed like minutes at a time. In this state of heightened processing power, I realized why my relationship was suffering. I realized that I was giving too much emotional attention to things other than my wife and by extension, my family.
I realized that I was giving too much emotional attention to other women. I wasn’t cheating on my wife physically but the emotional attention being spread out amongst the other women was stealing from the woman who mattered most. I realized that all women are goddesses but my wife was my goddess. I realized that I can still love the other women in my life but as daughters and sisters. Love is abundant and beautiful but I needed to focus that love to the right channels.
This revelation made me realize that my relationship with my son was strained too due to my lack of focus and that by loving his mother fully I was loving him fully too. I realized that I am not just the commander in chief of my household but its strongest supporter. I realized that leading by action got me to where I am today but that same leadership was ill-equipped for the second half of my life. For what is fresh in the morning is old in the afternoon, and at 43 years old I am in the afternoon of my life.
I realized that in order to continue to lead people to healthier, happier, lives I have to change from a man of action to a man of support. Losing my mother and best friend in the last 12 months made me realize that I wasn’t always supportive of them, even though they were two of my biggest supporters. I always expected my actions to lead them to a healthier lifestyle but now I realize that they needed more support and fewer lectures.
I also realized that I had strayed from my value of community in my pursuit of financial gain. There is nothing wrong with being wealthy as long as it doesn’t come at the expense of other more important things, like time, community, and connection. Yes, I have made hundreds of thousands of dollars being in front of my computer but I have also lost hundreds of thousands of seconds of being with my loved ones.
The money comes and goes but the time lost is never regained. We live in a world of 24-hour dopamine hits. Feeling lonely? Check your Twitter, IG, FB, or WhatsApp for a quick hit of dopamine and let the distractions begin. This comes at a cost though. The cost is your attention and time. The attention you could be spending on loved ones, and time you come be using to help others. No amount of likes can beat the feeling of truly connecting with another human in the service of a better world. Yet we give away our most precious resource without a second thought.
Spending a week connecting with nature, myself, and other beautiful human beings helped me realize some things that I knew all along, but I was too caught up in my distractions to see them clearly. This week away allowed me to think deeper and qualify what really mattered to me at 43.
My health, my family, my time, and you. I realized that in order to support my family, have more time, and help more people, that I need to continue to put my health at the center of my life. I realized that my family needs me to be more supportive, more present and that no amount of financial wealth can replace my attention and encouragement. I realized that at 43 I’m in the afternoon of my life and that nothing is more valuable than the limited time I have left to dedicate to what matters most to me, helping you succeed.
I write this love letter to you for a few reasons. The first is that you learn from my experiences so that you don’t have to suffer the same mistakes as I did. The second and more important reason is so that you look at your life right now and THINK about what’s important to you. Are you truly happy with how you look in the mirror? Are you truly happy with how you are spending your most valuable resource, your time? Are you doing your best to support those who support you?
These are the tough questions we should always be asking ourselves. You might not like the answers you get right now but that’s ok. It’s the answers to these questions that help us be what we truly wish to be. Life isn’t about what you have, it’s about doing what you love. Because if your success is not on your own terms, if it looks good to the world but does not feel good in your heart, it is not success at all.
Remember the words of Lily Tomlin: If you win the rat race, you’re still a rat.”