New Year, More Me


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It’s a little over three weeks into the new year and most of us have probably already given up on the many resolutions we set either on or prior to January 1st. Cue the shame, the “shit I can’t do this anymore,” or even “well there is always 2020!” What I am here to tell you is that it doesn’t matter. I hope you look at this new year as a time to look at yourself and ask more from yourself. So you tried the new diet, exercise plan, maybe even tried budgeting better and maybe some of these stuck and some didn’t serve you, but I am so happy you tried.

Here’s the thing. I hope 2019 is the year where you find more of yourself. I hope it’s not the year of “new year, new me.” I hope it’s the year of “new year, MORE ME.” I want you to stop apologizing for taking up space—because I sure fucking have. I want you to stay curious—ask the hard questions because we both know they are necessary! I want you to eat the GD pizza because it brings you joy! Whatever makes you feel the most you, do it. Even if you get the eye rolls from the players on the sidelines—it doesn’t even matter. All that matters is that joy is pouring into your cup and you are standing in the light of your life.

And you know what?!

You can start over and over and over again.

The new year isn’t the only signifier of change, but really another reminder that we can shift our goals, dreams, lives as much as necessary. For me, I ask, “Is this serving me? Is this bringing me joy?” And let me tell you, it has taken me a long time to get here. | finally realized that my life isn’t to be lived by others. It is supposed to be lived by me. This shift gave me the permission to step even further into myself.

2018 was the start and 2019 is the refinement.

So cheers to you and me. Let us go into the rest of this year being even more of ourselves and I hope that we are able to start, stop, turnaround, reroute as many times as possible. Don’t be afraid to shift. It’s scary at first and so worth it in the end.

Be inspired. Stay positive. Love yourself.

XOXO,
Marko


Facing Fear

22 years old and I face fear head on. Jobless (for now) and I have no idea of what is to come from this. As I look at my life, thus far, I have faced fear at almost every milestone.

  • 6 years old, lost my beautiful aunt and 2 cousins in a tragic car accident.
  • 8 years old, shattered femur while rollerblading (3 year recovery).
  • 11 years old, my parents unwanted divorce and father's full-blown addiction.
  • 18 years old, moving to a new city and starting my first year of college
  • 20 year old, father's addiction relapse and official "coming out"
  • 21 years old, graduate from college
  • 22 years old, jobless

In all instances, fear resides. Fearful of what was to come and what clearly is. Most of my life is based out of this almost debilitating feeling. In all cases, I breathe through the uncomfortableness this emotion feeds me. I take it and I work with it. I tell myself. "I can." "I will." "I am."

The faces of fear are the demons we meet--it is the reality and stories we tell ourselves. Can you imagine what our world would be like if we didn't base it out of every negative, fear-based experience? 

Fear is like that co-worker you can't stand. The ones that nit-pick and talk to you in a condescending tone. The ones that soak up your failures and shortcomings. Fear wants you to lose in this life. It is the egotistical asshole we cannot stand. 

Let it not kill us.

Let is not determine our soulful paths.

Press on.

Notice your uncertainty and move through the ebbs and flows with grace and a grateful heart.

I look back and I smile. I will not let fear take me into its clenching arms. I will look past it and move towards the light at the end of the proverbial tunnel. 

Let us win this together. In the end, we all don't get out of here alive. 

XO,

Marko     

 

What Yoga is to Me

Yoga, to me, is the practice for yourself, to yourself, that finds yourself. It is the moment where you can find the deep connections between your mind, body, and soul. It is the breath that you use to center yourself in times of stress and uneasiness or even times of great joy. Most importantly, yoga is the practice that quite literally “yolks”  or brings together all that you are--the imperfections, the messiness, the brokenness, the love, and the light.

I practice yoga because it is the only type of exercise that I have ever felt centered and fulfilled after. It has been the most constant form of movement I have ever followed through with. Every time I am on my mat, I learn about a different part of myself. I learn the why behind my tight hips and shoulders or the reasons I fall in an out of a balance. On my mat, is where I can face some of the deepest emotional, physical, or mental obstacles. Even though the practice may be constant, I find that every class challenges me in a different way; today it may be more physical than mental then tomorrow more emotional than physical-- it is forever changing and evolving. I practice yoga because it helped me to find myself. It helps me to love myself fully--quite literally every part. Each moment I move in and out of an asana, I  come back to a piece of me. It further teaches me that breath is the strongest life force--I can use it both on  and off my mat and it instills in me that everything will be okay; “I am safe. I am healthy. I am loved.” Most importantly, when I practice yoga, I feel like the best, greatest, strongest, most powerful version of myself.

XO,

Marko

2016, I thank you.

2016, I thank you.

I may have started the year out in a therapist's office talking about the very things that scared the absolute hell out of me,  but I learned something every single day:

  • Life is what you literally make of it, you either push through the hard stuff or become the perpetual victim of your own life.
  • Some friendships are temporary and serve only a short time purpose in your life.
  • Yoga is harder than everyone thinks--I spent more time crying on that mat than I ever wanted to admit.
  • Friendship is the corner stone of every romantic relationship.
  • I was never meant to live a traditional life.
  • Loving yourself is a lot of work and some people will be scared of your self-aware attitude.
  • Finding your tribe of people is one of the greatest uses of time you will ever give yourself.
  • All people are complex. (Yes, ladies, even gay men.)
  • We must be our greatest advocates in life both professionally and personally.
  • Life long learning is more important than what a college degree will give you.
  • If you are passionate about anything you do in this life, keep going, hustle, and it will payoff--someday.
  • Never feel shame for the things you cannot control in your life.
  • Standing with your personal  convictions is hard, with integrity, it is worth it.
  • In any situation, kindness will always be the answer.
  • If someone chooses to be unkind to you and spew absolute negativity your way, know that it has nothing to do with you, but it is a reflection of themselves.
  • Never give your power away.
  • Talking about the hard stuff will only get easier.
  • It takes courage to be the person you want to be and go the places you want to go.
  • Vulnerability is not a weakness, but the greatest asset.
  • Find what inspires you and bathe in it.
  • Laughter and love are the ultimate medicines.

So I thank you, dear 2016, I thank you for throwing a mirror in my face and ultimately scaring the hell out of me. Thank you for the lessons, the hardships, the memories, the laughs, the tears, the love. Thank you to my friends, my family, the strangers with the smiles--know you are all loved. Let's make 2017 something to remember--we are all forces to be reckoned with.

Be inspired. Stay Positive. Love yourself.

With the great amount of gratitude, love, and light.

XOXO,

Marko