Lately I’ve been thinking of life in terms of flavours—cocktail flavours, to be more precise. Maybe it’s because I love mixed juice cocktails (aren’t they FRESH!) and how good they taste on a hot summer day. Now I want some freshly squeezed liquid nirvana, LOL.
Anyway, I did a programme December 2013 that challenged me to get super clear on my Life Map, values, and deepest desires. Jenny Blake’s The Acorn Project is the best $15 you’ll ever spend. Just sayin’.
Writing my Life Map got me thinking about a Life Cocktail and what flavours make the best mix. You non-teetotallers out there probably have your favourite cocktails, yes? Mimosas, Cosmopolitans, vodka martinis, you know the ones. Green juice lovers roll with kale, ginger, chia seeds, and other leafy goodness.
Me, I have a different set of ingredients in mind. And so, I give you 7 flavours for your Life Cocktail.
The joy in your life is up to you. How much joy you feel is up to you. This is where you define what joy really means to you and streamline your desires & experiences to reflect that definition.
How will you build your joy? How will you fill your days with as much giddy pleasure as you can handle? How will you rise above external circumstances and be able to cultivate joy no matter what’s going on in your life?
When I think about joy, I think about light brimming under your skin. I think about the sun shining out of your pores. I see the Aurora Borealis twinkling in your eyes.
Joy is expansive, magnetic, and charismatic. Joy is to humans what air is to blood—vital.
Your joy is your responsibility and your birthright. Your fruit as a human being. Your lifeblood as a soul with a mission and vision. Filling your days with the things that bring you joy? Yes please.
At the end of the day, we just want to feel good. We want to feel useful, challenged, and on top of our game. We want to feel the wind in our hair and the sun at our feet. We want to explore, expand, & innovate. We want to create, we want to feel, & we want to matter. We always, always want to matter.
Joy makes us feel like we matter. It makes us feel connected. It gives us wings of fire and warms our hearts with golden light. We sleep better, work better, and laugh harder. We’re happier. We’re alive.
You want more love, right? RIGHT? Self-love, sexual love, pet love—our lives are threaded through with demands and needs for robust love. Just like every cocktail falls flat with stale ingredients, your Life Cocktail falls flat without some sweet love thrown in.
Give more love. Make more love. Write love letters on paper and give them to others as keepsakes. Do the things that work for you, that lift you, dare you to go deeper than you think you can and give more than you think you’ve got to give. Make your love bright and pure and full.
Enrich the texture of your life with the light and space that comes from being in love with your dreams and your world. Open.
One of my favourites! I always wish I could set my life on actual fire and throw gas on that stuff like I’m freezing my butt off in Alaska.
I do that through writing in my truest voice, and video jamming with my Angel Soul Posse. I’m craving tango lessons because there’s something so sexy and primal yet classy about it.
That’s how I want my fire to feel: sexy, primal, and classy. Blazing sky-high and shaking it up. Yes.
How do you fuel your flames?
We need to move. We’re built to move. Motion is so important to feel good, alive, and connected to your soul and body. This is why dance parties will always be in style, runners love to run, and martial arts ninjas can go hard all day. Our blood flows differently when we consciously raise our heart rate in ways that feel good.
No Life Cocktail is complete without an element of motion, from the gentlest stretches to the most intense HIIT workouts. Some days you feel like a beast and other days you feel like a baby, but the important thing is holding yourself to a standard that keeps you fit, strong, and glowing.
Here’s the kicker about motion: You want to commit to it as much as you can, but you also want to keep it loose and flowy enough to accommodate the vagaries of life. Do it with ease and quit the judgement.
How can you sustain motion in a way that feels good to you? How can you do what calls to you in a way that uplifts and nourishes you?
This year I’m incorporating Zumba and Tai Chi into my weekly experience because I want more vigorous community-based movement in my life.
I’m also gravitating towards tango and kick-boxing because they’re flip sides of my emerging warrior spirit; fierce, bold, and fabulous, baby.
Whether you run, Cross Fit, or lift weights, do it because it lights you up, not because someone says you should.
Find your groove, people.
Yes, stillness. Mindfulness. Clearing your mind to free your mind. I’ve logged 285 days of meditation because it calms me. Sometimes it feels like a fricking joke and sometimes it feels like I’m on a hotline to heaven, but I keep going because I believe in the power of meditation to transform and elevate the human spirit. It also opens up space to discover something new about myself on a daily basis.
We all need the time and freedom to slow down, assimilate, and develop. Stillness is the counterpoint of fire and motion—you need all 3 to fully be your truest self.
Being your truest self is simply trusting yourself enough to sit in silence and face whatever shows up for you. Sometimes you’ll feel clear as a bell and other times like you’re just scraping muck off the walls, but through it all you’re living and evolving and braving your thoughts. Braving the fire, as I like to think of it.
You’ve already read ubiquitous advice to turn off the distractions and meditate, pray, or do whatever else gets you in that contemplative communion with your soul. I won’t repeat any of that because I know you know all that good stuff.
I’m daring you to face yourself. I’m daring you to face your mind like I face the blank page every day.
Do you have the courage to get still enough to discover what’s swirling beneath the surface? Do you have the courage to be so raw and vulnerable that your deepest fears and passions bleed through? Do you have the mental discipline to sift through the silt for the gold?
A daily stillness practice will challenge and stretch you to become the highest version of yourself, to evolve into the clearest and strongest texture of your Soul. You will breathe fire and gather diamonds and pearls.
After doing The Acorn Project, I discovered a yearning for devotion in my art. I wanted to be wildly devoted to my art. I wanted to name my temple so I could build my cathedral. I’m more interested in creating sacred art and less interested in half-hearted efforts that don’t stir me or reach deep into my soul.
I believe in the veins of gold waiting to enrich my life and my world, but I can’t get to those veins of gold without devotion on my side.
I need it to get me through the days nothing’s working, I feel like burning my work, and I’m minutes away from giving up on my dream.
I need it to fully appreciate the days my muse makes love to me, I connect with my readers, and my words make a difference in someone else’s life.
Devotion is the discipline to forge ahead because you deeply believe in your art and its place in the world. Devotion is the glue that keeps your soul together when life morphs into a hurricane that threatens to blow apart your heart. Devotion is honouring the sacred and enjoying even the ordinary because it all ties together in a beautiful mosaic that evolves as a reflection of your genius.
Yes, it’s all been done before. Yes, you shouldn’t reinvent the wheel. No, you shouldn’t hide away because you doubt your voice, your worth, or your message.
You are here to shine. Let your light out. Let devotion be your guide and your fire. You are here to heal the world. Go ahead and heal us in your own special way.
No cocktail mix is complete without space for it all to mix. Each flavour needs space to explode on your tongue and thrill you with freshness & energy.
Space is the magic key that unlocks a whole new cathedral of intuition & possibility. Space is the engine that powers your ship and gets you where you need to go. Space brings together your joy, love, fire, motion, stillness, & devotion.
Inasmuch as you want the richness of a full life, you also want the space of a streamlined experience that really lets you dig deep with each flavour in your Life Cocktail.
Ultimately life isn’t about how much stuff you have or how much you do, but what stuff you have and what you choose to do.
Do you have the space to create and enjoy your art?
Do you have the space to consume, enjoy, and interact with the art of other people?
Do you have the space to build solid relationships with the people you love?
Do you have the space to enjoy your life and time?
I think space is even more precious in this digital age. We’re so connected to each other that we run the risk of forgetting who we are because we’re too busy listening to and keeping up with everyone else.
This is why space is paramount.
This is why stillness is important.
You cannot know who you are until you have the space to discover what you love and what you need.
The texture of your life ranges from smooth as silk to rough as thistles because texture depends on how much time you can devote to working out the kinks. This doesn’t mean you won’t have any edges, it just means your edges are clearly defined and sharp enough to cut diamonds.
I list space as the last flavour because it’s the incubator for everything else. Last July I deleted chat apps from my phone and it opened up so much more space for me to write & develop my voice. I filled 7 notebooks between May and December, and they’re all journals of my deepest thoughts, richest content, and bravest voice.
Notice the ‘est’ at the end of each adjective—you can’t get the best from yourself & others if you don’t have the space to let things develop before you enjoy them.
Space gives you the chance to show up. You can’t show up if you’re frazzled, overwhelmed, and baring your teeth at people, but you can fully show up if you’re calm, in flow, and on top of your emotions.
Showing up is the courage to step out even if you fail, people laugh at you, or your art stinks. You choose to show up because you choose to dance in the space available to you when you consciously determine what goes on in your life.
You choose to show up because you choose the texture that’s rich with space, magic, & possibility. You choose to show up because you choose to whip up the tastiest Life Cocktail available to you with what you have. You choose to show up because fear is not enough to keep you from the pot of gold you know is at the end of the rainbow.
Joy. Love. Fire. Motion. Stillness. Devotion. Space. These are the flavours in my Life Cocktail. These are the flavours I hope you’ll consider adding or developing in yours. And I trust they’ll inspire you to customise/create your own snazzy blend that makes your taste buds explode every time you sip it.
So! What sorts of flavours speak most to you?
Photo credit: Creative Commons