50 First Dates VI: Matchmaker Mishaps

50 First Dates Ive come to realize that the best things in life make you sweat. Heart beating. Sweat dripping. Deep breathing. Food. Sex. (and love). Fitness. Whatever it is that makes your heart skip a beat --To remind you that yes, in fact you are alive - and human,  mistakes included. For me, much of this reminder has come thru love lessons - to remind me of life lessons … no mistakes, just lessons, thru the men ive sweat with - in food, fitness + otherwise. Some made me laugh. Some made me cry. Below is a manifesto of sorts. All in good fun, in the end - each has taught me more about myself. Unpeeling my layers, as i learn about others. But a leopard never changes its spots. We are who we are. Short stories below. Names have been changed. And Grudges have been dropped. And i am more than conscious that there are 3 sides to every story - mine, his + the truth. Take a peek.
a much needed lighter approach than the depth of diary IV.

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Most little girls dress up as fairy princesses or their favorite disney characters. Me? A modern-day bride. Hair down + walking down the aisle with honeymoon bags packed and “here comes the bride” blasting down my childhood home corridor. Only thing missing was the husband. Age 4. This procession did not just occur on halloween. It occurred often, whenever i was in the mood to get married. i would suit up, grab my hat bags and makeup kits, turn the music on loud + make sure my mom was watching and hope my dad was ready to give me away -- via phone, as he slaved away at his office. 28 years later, i’m in bed at 4am, writing about 50 first dates, matchmaker mishaps, below.

Now, love is love and
Business is business.
But let us also consider the business of love,
which is just a hair shy of the business of lust,
Lust + love are both among the oldest businesses in the world, no doubt.
But lets stick to love, matchmaking in particular where Fiddler on the Roof immediately comes to mind. Not much has changed, matchmakers are yentahs. they sell relationships + their networks, with the possibility that love might spark.
Like any broker (stock, real estate, art, love), some are good, some are not so good.
And some just get lucky. You may wonder, how it works. In my experience, women are sought after to be introduced to their paying clients, after a phone interview or too long questionnaire with personal questions and personal preferences. the men pay a service fee, upwards of $10K-50K, depending on the matchmaker -- which always felt a bit suspect, or rather, a blurring of lines between the aforementioned business of love + business of lust. two stories below.

Matchmaker Mishap 1
Age 25, Eleven Madison Park.
I have only visited the former best restaurant in the world 3 times. Once or twice at their annual kentucky derby party for juleps, jubilees + fried chicken, dinner for my 25th birthday, and a ten-course wine-pairing dinner -- on a blind date. I invited him. Risky or not, i typically do what i want and in this situation, it was no different. I had recently met a matchmaker who was young + fun, someone i’d want to be friends with, whose clients (or members rather) paid upwards of $50,000 fees to find love. If you work with a matchmaker, it should be someone you’d see yourself befriending, because they’d set you up with someone they’d likely date themselves. the hook is, they also have to do their job. And i would be held accountable to give feedback following the first introduction. My setup was Eric, age 40. Doctor or lawyer, something seemingly stable or sounding predictable enough to be my plus 1 to a ten-course wine-pairing dinner with strangers at the best restaurant in the world.

The variables were already unpredictable, so i went for conservative attire: silk dress, black patent pointy louboutins, smoky eye and surreptitious smile. Director of communications for chef michael white + the altamarea group at age 25, confident AF but sweet nonetheless, “looking” for love in all the the wrong places, which certainly didn’t include a stable blind date with a banker + a tasting menu. I was much more interested in the trouble-hunting trader catching my eye from across the room. Course after course was delivered, palm-size portions on platter-sized plates and with it all the first date getting-to-know-you conversation and another pour of french wine. Two issues of note:

  1. My drinking skill is below average at best. One glass of wine is borderline too much. Ten tasting pours could potentially result in a post-college-party type fiasco.

  2. A first date should be a casual beer at a dark bar.

Thankfully we were seated at a table of 10, a safe cushion for small talk. Dinner was fine, too much wine, for too little humor -- too many courses and too little food. Three hours in, just before dessert, and after our 8th pour of f wine, eric excused himself to the restroom. A woman i’d never met started asking questions and all too honestly, i answered that yes it was our first date and no, there wouldn’t be a second.  As Eric returned i excused myself next -- and then returned to find eric had already gotten his coat. The good samaritan next to me let eric know he was toast. No goodbye, and nearly 9 courses in, he left. My blind date was blindsided. And i was left at eleven madison park 9 of 10 courses in, toasted, terrified and with serious explaining to do tomorrow to the matchmaker i trusted, who trusted me, to behave.

Matchmaker Mishap 2

October 2015: A family friend urged me to meet her. “Everyone knows they are the best on the upper east side trust me.” More than ample reason to decline but rather i curiously cabbed myself to midtown. Enter into a too loud, too greasy Greek restaurant on a too rainy night after a too long work day, after convincing myself that the $30 cab ride + $250 entry fee was a cheap price to pay if it procured my prince charming. See, the male clients pay the 10k plus fee, but to enter your name in the race, there is an entry fee. i bypassed the host stand and took a deep breath as i headed upstairs to an empty table and strong smell of saganaki. I wore business casual as requested, and waited patiently while the host carelessly collected cash from husband hunting hopefuls. And she was dressed carelessly in sweatpants and sneakers. The dress code was specific, for everyone except her. As the women gathered around the table, she sat, stuffed herself with hummus and simultaneously began her interrogation. Women of all shapes and sizes went around the table introducing themselves and then the questions began.

  • Height? Age? Weight? Occupation?

  • What do you see when you look in the mirror?

  • If you could change anything about yourself, what would it be?

  • Have you had any surgeries?

  • Do you plan on having any surgeries?

  • What size are your breasts? Are they real?

She was just getting warmed up. Photos. Men like photos. You need better photos.

I thought i was going to be sick. I paid this women to degrade me, to degrade us. I spent hard earned money and time on a sweatpant clad she hating saganaki eater. Furious, i got up from a table of gold digging desperates on the hunt for deep pockets and went downstairs. The manager stopped me as I scurried out and asked if all was ok. I explained that there was a woman upstairs degrading women, collecting money to belittle, disguising herself as a helper but rather just inflicting harm. I gave him my business card and left, with $250 less cash, a little less pride, but a hell of a sense of what integrity doesn’t look like. He texted me the next day to tell me he will no longer host her husband hunting hummus gatherings and i emailed her asking for a refund, rather verbatim: “i work hard from my money and while i respect what you do, i am not a gold digger and this program does not fit in my moral compass. I assume you don’t refund but i’d hope you might reconsider.” i have yet to hear back and the smell of saganaki still makes me sick.

sunday self love

A sunday type of love. Of self.
In my class yesterday i kept repeating this:
“Choose you --
Or wait to be chosen.”
We spend our lives waiting for the right time
The perfect opportunity
to send the text
Or start the project,
switch the habit
Or book the trip
My question is:
What are we waiting for?
When is the right time,
If all we have is now.
Isn’t now the only time,
To choose you?
To do what feels right,
make the first move,
Or take the big risk?
Not to plan the future,
But to open up to opportunity
And let the universe take it from there.
What if you choose you?
Now.
#workhard #livyoung


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change

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i am full of emotions. and my eyes are filled with tears. happy + sad. empty + full. i feel like im being cut open + fear ive chosen the wrong choice, to knock down + tear thru. Growth or destruction? construction or destruction? such a difference in definition between two words, but just a matter of perspective. I know my fear is natural, fear of the unknown, fear of growth + that which is out of my control. so ill wipe my eyes + trust myself because if I don't trust me, who will?

Within these sweat laden walls are love + hope, fight + flow. Dreams turned into reality, energy exchanged, connection created, community built. And the reality that anything is possible, even in 1500 feet on the 2nd floor of bond street. And as the walls come down and the space opens up, my heart does too, with new possibility, a bigger team, and all the challenge that comes with it.
and as my wallet shrinks, my dreams grow, so if you wanna buy me a beer, im in. lets drink to dreams becoming to reality. ease > resistance. #workhard #livyoung

to be seen

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Really though, we just want to be seen.
To be acknowledged, regarded, appreciated, loved. Life is all about connection - connecting to ourselves so that we better connect to others without the distraction, the judgement, the affirmation, comparison. To be seen as we are. The more I teach, speak, write, share, liv -- the more i connect. I spread my truth not just to be heard, but to hear myself. And maybe you can relate, or better, learn from my experiences. We all have stories. I share because I’m seeking connection. Thru introspection. Thru me.

People take my class and i do my best to remember their names, because i want to be remembered. I connect thru instagram DM’s, random eye contact on the street, even acknowledging cat calls with a smile. We revisit the same neighborhood restaurants, coffee shops + corner stores — for connection, the coffee becomes secondary. But Connection is a two-way street. I connect because i seek connection.
I see because I want to be seen.
We all do, no?

I dated a guy who slid into my DM’s but didnt follow me, or show any interest in what i share with the world. Sounds petty, perhaps, but im putting myself out there, to let people in. His failure to acknowledge me made me feel less than, or rather, I gave him that power. Truth is, i don’t need anyone to validate my mission if i believe in it myself. and to be honest, i dont follow him either.

I share to connect. And as i put myself out there now more than ever thru my blog, photos, teaching, etc, i do so not for affirmation that i am good enough, but for affirmation that my message is heard: The message that balance is a never-ending journey, a journey that begins within, because we have everything we need inside. that life is messy, but messy is sexy - raw + real. So let's embrace all of it, thru all sides of us, dark + light, fight + flow, resistance + ease, because we are enough, as we are - all done up + all undone.

For better or worse, Social media serves that, as a tool. We want the follow, the likes. the friend accept. So, I use it to share my story. But it is a tool that can be used or abused, and i’m just learning what works for me, thru sharing vs. oversharing. But all that surface shit doesn’t define us or make us whole.  it’s easy to look great in photos, and to like great photos, but how do we connect in real time? We don’t. We are shy. Afraid of rejection. Afraid of judgement. Fixated on comparison.

My mission is to change that. Not because i have found the light. Or the answer. But because i am on the same mission, to be self-defined. But to see others, we must first see ourselves. Drop the comparison, the judgement, the not good enough, the better than.
So are you willing to look within to see what you’re hiding from?
To connect within? To see + be seen?
It always starts with you.

#workhard #livyoung

help

it can be such a dirty word, no? some are afraid to ask for it and others seek answers for everything. Me? i used to refuse a helping hand until confidence escaped me and i drifted to the latter, reaching far and wide for “help” — psychics, shamans, shrinks to give me answers. eventually i came back to me: who i am, what i have + what i seek. So, I’m not looking for help - i’m looking for collaboration.
I’m not looking for a caretaker, or to be a caregiver, i’m looking for a partner.
But seeking outward instead of looking wtihin, for help -- is not my way forward. let me clarify -- we all need an extra hand sometimes, but there is a difference in “needing” help and asking for guidance. In relationships, when one person becomes needy---the relationship is off balance.

When we are our best versions of self, in our flow, our energy attracts just that, different than energy put out in times of need, in desperation. In need, we attract disconnection disguised as connection because it is sourced from a disconnected place, from a place of need.
example: I need HELP for my business to grow.
I need HELP finding the answers.
Or HELP to be my best self.
Or a PARTNER to make me feel full.

Seeking outward is not the way forward.
Some ask for help + others are afraid it shows weakness. it is a happy balance, no doubt. To grow in life, in work + love, i believe collaboration is the key. Businesses stay small when owners suffocate - when they don’t delegate, when they micro mange. Children grow up needy, not self sufficient when parents just give what is asked for - be it help, money, answers, guidance, etc. And relationships end up broken if one party is seeking fulfillment or definition thru the other.

We must be full on our own before we can be full for another. Confidence in ourselves rather than seeking help outside. A man recently asked me how i became so open in life in heart in spirit. He said, when did you decide to love yourself.”? My response, unknown. But i woke up one day and i chose me - like the little engine that could, i think i can i think i can i think i can. Because if you choose to be your first choice, you will be chosen first, and i will never turn back — in life, work + in love. Is everyday gumdrops + happy hour? Yes. and sometimes it is to fuel my life and sometimes it is to fill a void because i’m feeling less than best and seeking help thru sugar or substance to make me feel full. But for the most part, me, as i am, is all i need.
And with that, partnership and collaboration in work, life + love, will just add to the life that i love, the life that i choose, the life that is mine.
Are you willing to look within to see what you’re hiding from?

#workhard #livyoung

50 First Dates - Volume 1

50 First Dates

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Ive come to realize that the best things in life make you sweat. #workhard #livyoung
Heart beating. Sweat dripping. Deep breathing.
Food.
Love. (and sex).
Fitness.

Whatever it is that makes your heart skip a beat --To remind you that yes, in fact you are alive - and human, mistakes included.

Much of this reminder has come thru love lessons, which remind me of life lessons …
no mistakes, just lessons, thru the men ive sweat with, and sweat because of.
Some memories make me laugh. Some make me cry. Sharing bit by bit. So - below is a manifesto of sorts. All in good fun, in the end because each has taught me more about myself, and people in general. What i want + don’t, in a man + in myself. I am unpeeling my layers, as i learn about others.

Short stories below. Names have been changed. And most grudges have been dropped.
And cognizant that there are 3 sides to every story - mine, his + the truth.
These are out of order. And out of sorts. Consume as you wish. Perhaps with a cocktail.
A leopard never changes its spots. We are who we are.
But there are certainly wolves dressed in sheep’s clothing.

12/29/2011

An email to my mother, typed ferociously late night on my blackberry hiding under the covers:

Vail, CO. Early in the game. Fly out to see Beau at his famiIy house for New Years.

I step into this massive mountain cabin. Xmas decorations line the exterior and interior. Animal heads on the walls. I am the only jew. Do they want to wall mount me too? Blond haired trophy wives wearing winter white congregate in the kitchen drinking white wine. pinot noir for me - in my black leather pants, silk blouse and booties. Why fit in when you can stand out? A sinkful of wine bottles on ice graces the corner of the massive kitchen - each bottle emptied and replaced. No recycling in these Rockies. 25 minutes in everyone is red faced. The laughing gets louder, intoxicated howls echoing off the taxidermied walls. Oh and there is food! a massive selection spread across the regal wood dining table extending the full length of the room, adorned with renaissance-esque red velvet thrones. The menu closely resembles every treat recommended via Semi-Homemade by Sandra Lee for the perfect cocktail party. Andrew Cuomo would be proud. cream cheese crab dip with fritos and triscuits, mini sweet and sour meatballs, cocktail weiners soaked in bbq sauce, puff pastry wrapped brie with bubbling brown sugar, water chestnuts adorned with liverwurst and bacon, proscuitto wrapped melon on tooth pics, baby tomato/mozzarella skewers...and for dessert, a crowd favorite: Ferraro Rocher chocolates and candy canes. Conversation drifted from guns to wolf dogs to plans for new years eve in Vail Village. However, I will be at the family home eating oysters, tenderloin, and the pate of pheasant that Beau shot last year.
Shalom for now, Olivia

**the following morning, said mom was supposed to cook new years eve for 20 friends. Too much white wine interfered. So she sat on a kitchen stool and directed me as i plowed thru her menu, recipe by recipe, to complete her culinary tasks. After i was done with my chores, i called my mom, changed my flight, and got the hell out - just in time to start the new year, on my terms, back in new york city.

07/ 15 / 2018
Hot Aussie. J-Date. Skinny Jeans. Entrepreneur.
Sunday night eating sardines or JG Melon no bun with my hands. Text alert - “if you’re still free for a drink tonight, lets do it.” non committal - fit me in, but i was bored. reply, “lets go. Dante on MacDougal. See you in 30.” Tall sexy dark features swoops in like a tsunami with fast moves + fast words. Over educated + Over committed. Rushed to meet on a random Sunday as i sipped my mezcal ever so slowly, and spoke even slower in hopes he might slow down. MIND BLOWN. I used to be him. Rushing to fit it all in. searching. Emotionally unavailable, unwilling to commit to love, yet completely over committed in life. Speeding thru autopilot to prove to myself i could do everything just enough, without digging deeper into anything at all. Because i wasn’t willing to dig into myself. It was phenomenal to see ME --- in real time. Deep conversation and a quick make out in front of mermaid inn, before he rushed off to Mission Chinese — Bold move considering Mermaid’s happy hour line floods to houston street. but there was chemistry, so i went with it. We had dinner once more at via carota. My choice. Branzino for two, verde salad, roast carrots. He anxiously watched his phone in anticipation of a deal closing. It did. We celebrated with another makeout in the park. But his aggressive hands around my neck felt too freaky too late on a tuesday. Dude, i don’t know how they do down under but choking is a lot to ask + your hyper hands can’t be trusted. Aussie, out.

Hurricane

I had this thing for hedgefund guys. It was the power, the money, and their complete utter lack of care for anything in life - besides themselves that drew me in. Sick, i know. but—i could change them, i could win them, i could help them invest in resturant side hustles, and show them how to open their hearts. Funny, right? I met hedgefund during a hurricane. A minor one, en route sunday eve. Random nolita brunch, overpriced avocado toast + cous cous towers with friends + some guy who knew numbers. Nothing epic, at all. I don’t actually think we spoke because he was busy talking shop - typical. Afterwards, we strolled thru soho as the city emptied to prepare for the storm. Silly me, i went along to hedgefund’s new apartment to put away his patio furniture. Light wind + rain trickled down as we hung out on the couch and talked about nutella. And then he came at me - aggressively assuming i was DTF - as if hurricanes grant that permission. I felt like a prisoner in his palatial pool furniture filled flat as the thunder got louder. So i left. I ran home - just about 7 blocks, in the hurricane. He thought i was kidding when i said i was leaving. I wasnt. If i couldnt save him, i could certainly save me. But really Olivia, what did you think was going to happen? No mistakes. Just lessons.

More to come. Comment below.

#workhard #livyoung

empty

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I believe so deeply in humanity.
Connection.
The power of collaboration.
Self love. The human experience.
You are the energy you attract.
You get what you give.
We are better together.
I believe in people. And myself,
roughly 98% of the time.
And sometimes i just feel empty.
Depleted.
Used.
Sad.
Alone.

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See i have this dream. Many dreams. Big ones. To change the way we speak to ourselves. To each other. The way to relate to us + everything around us.
That there is power in perspective, that life is not easy but it doesn’t have to be so hard.
To flow thru the fight. Ease thru transition.  
That there will always be room for more - growth, love, balance. To liv, not limit. Be bold.
Feel everything. So i do. Even the bad.
And 2% of the time i feel used, and alone. Like my sad fridge this morning. empty,
With hints of hope. Signs of celebration. Highs + lows. Bud heavys + bottles of krug.

See i give. So much of me. So much of the time. As a choice. For nothing in return. For no other reason than it makes me feel good. I want to share that energy, emotion, love, self love. Thru box + flow, my words, actions, and my heart + mostly thru my willingness to see people as they are, because i woke up one day and decided see myself.

I am selfish, sure. But you must be selfish to be selfless.
And with all the giving, i realize more and more how often so many just take.
Take what they can. Whatever they can. Take your money, time, advice, beers from the fridge, hand weights, hand wraps, petty cash, corporate card, monthly retainers, take your words + ideas as their own, your assets as their artwork, your methods as their invention, take your heart. As long as it isn’t nailed down, its up for grabs.
That’s when it gets complicated.
You give and you give. And you wonder, who is there to give to you?
So you give to yourself. Whatever you can.

I do not give to get.
I do not show up to fit in.

Im just me. Happy, energetic, open, present, 98% of the time. Its taken a hell of a lot of hard work to get here, but to livyoung 98% of the time, is worth it.
But i stand out. Ive had to accept that people either repel me or welcome me. Judge me, or open up to me. Part of me embracing all of me is accepting that i am polarizing; strong conviction with flexible perspective.
And that ill never just fit in.
And with that self definition, came self acceptance and a small sense of sadness.
And wonder:
How can you be everything to everyone and still be enough for yourself?
I imagine parents might feel like this too. When their children are ungrateful.
When you put yourself out there, people will take. You will harden. And i have.
But i don’t know how to harden enough to hold back. Because i want to lean in.
I want to learn more. I want to open my heart + hold my head high.
I just dont want to get hurt.
Because the more that i give, the more there is to take.
And for better or worse, it hurts, sometimes.
And then i come back to my 98% of hope, and happy. And start right where i left off, but with a few more bruises and a reminder that no matter what,
all i have to be is me. That is enough.
Self definition is your definition.
#workhard #livyoung


power of goodbye


This share is to limit the stories we tell ourselves:
to open our hearts + also protect them from harm,
as love is really a game of risk.
toying with anothers’ emotions is a devilish deed-- resulting in stories and sagas outlasting the natural course of when love affairs begin + end. even worse is trying to convince ourselves that it is a game to win. I don’t believe in mistakes, just lessons -- perhaps you will learn from mine.
Choose to be your first choice, and you will be chosen first.

In terms of the story —
after letting it sit for a bit, i can laugh, but learn because i have done this before. A romance short lived: chased by a man i wasn’t all that interested in—moreso intrigued, then opened my heart after telling myself stories. I love love - courtship, companionship, sharing + caring. But it leaves me wondering what i have not considered within, that i continue attracting unavailable creatures. If i am chased to open others’ hearts, (see post), who is here to care for mine?

A reminder to us all: to keep our hearts open, heads high, mindfully.
No mistakes, just lessons.
This story as a gentle reminder of the power of energy -- Do not seek what is not seeking you, no matter how elegantly it is presented. Find clarity between ego + heart, when it comes at you strong, when you are pursued or pursuing. Because love, while risky-- is meant to fuel hearts, not fill egos. A shared journey - rather than a self prophecy, reiterating the stories we tell ourselves. There is no chase, no win, no goal. It is a forever kind of feeling.  
A feeling which is not present, in this story, in this now.
So i have found the power of goodbye.

An end + a beginning

This ride has been fun. Random outreach. Instant connection. Excitement from the beginning. Thrill of the chase. Learning, touching, sharing, tasting, traveling, experiencing, but your heart is not open, so I must go. Im seeking a man who wants to be mine. A man. To care + take care. To listen and share. To provide comfort and excitement. To be my man. A partner first, lover second, learner third. I think we have the order skewed.I want a man whose flexibility is ever present. Willing + able to bend, not break. In more than just business. Rigid structures built on faulty foundations crumble quickly when there is a small crack. I seek more. The thrill of the chase is not thrilling to me. I want a man who is available to support my endeavors, be my critic + my fan. I want a man who wants me as I want him. an equal partnership. So while I have no answer to this short lived love affair, my solution for now is simply ciao. And thank you for being who you are, even if you may claim to seek more, the power of myth is powerful. Your actions are strong, your conviction is real, you go after what you want. And I dont feel your conviction enough in me. There is power in goodbye. Best wishes, all love. I’ve shared my heart + now i must protect what is mine.

A lesson to us all: Trust your intuition. Do not seek what is not seeking you. To know yourself is to grow yourself: Simply put, I knew it was over when it was over, and i allowed it to carry on two weeks too long. But even before that, sleep was stolen from me the moment i felt my gut keeping me up, my intuition leaving me restless at night, anxiously warning me that this love affair was not right. No harm, too surfaced to form a scar, just a small bruise that will heal in no time, leaving a small memory, in a chapter of my never ending story.

Protect your heart from hurt. But do not fear risking the possibility of love.
**and even with a little bruise, i got some good content. :)
#workhard livyoung.




fuel or fill?

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How do you liv your life? Spend your time?
Filling or being fulfilled?

Are you going thru the motions or making the most of what you have?
Fueling or filling?
connected or disconnected?
When you are connected to you -- your core, your desires, dreams + necessities, your perspective shifts. Your conversations change. Your relationships evolve, beginning with the relationship you have with yourself. it starts with you.

When connected, you are present in choosing to fuel your life instead of fill it. To fuel your body with what feels good instead of filling it with instant gratification of food, or sex or substance or the like. In connection, you fuel your time with work and love rather than fill it with placeholders + distractions to take up space. So-

Do you fuel or do you fill?
Your time. Your body. Your relationships.
Your work - does it fuel you or fill you?

With love: Is it comfortable or compatible? Does it fill space? Or do your relationships make you better? Fuel your soul? Challenge you to think different?
Or is it just physical love? The act of needing to be loved. For fear of being alone? maybe its just sex. And sex can fuel you, fulfill you, physically. But it can also fill - take up space + time, for fear of actual intimacy beyond just getting laid.

With work: Does it just fill time? Time spent pushing papers or fielding orders for something you aren’t passionate about. are you filling time watching the clock, pondering a dream you leave undiscovered? There is no thing wrong with not being passionate about what you do -- but there is concern if a job is tirelessly taking your soul. You can justify that it serves its purpose and provides you with what is needed to afford the life you liv, but match that with a hobby, a passion, something to fuel your soul. Your time is your life. Consider how you spend it.

With food: We’re humans. We love what we shouldn’t, eat what tastes good. treats and booze and make that a super size. But let’s consider digging deeper here.
What feels good - for you, in real time? How does your body respond when you feed it? Does it feel fueled or filled? When do you eat? When you’re hungry or bored or insecure or all of the above? Do you go for the 3rd cocktail because you aren’t working tomorrow or the first beer because you have an hour to kill? A slice of pizza on the go or the 4pm cappuccino or candy sugar rush? Instant gratification is delayed dis-ease. Take a second. Get present in the decisions that you make. Are you fueling your body or filling it?

We seek outward instead of looking within as a natural habit, as a human race. The cookie when we’re sad. The beer when we’re bored. The text to the ex when we’re feeling less than fulfilled. What if we switched our habits?

there is also the potential of finding magic in monontony- shifting our perspective to see what was once filling time as something that begins fueling your life. changing routine, challenging conversation, spicing up the sex, walking a different way to work. small changes make big differences. Your perspective is yours to switch, your choice.

Do you liv or do you exist?
Your work. Your time. Your life.
Your body. Your heart.
Are you fueling or are you filling?
Consider looking within. See what you see.
#workhard #livyoung




l o v e

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Life is exciting. Especially in emotion. With feeling. For someone, or something. A new flame. A new job. A new neighborhood.

In new attraction, a feeling that might become a connection, forever or fleeting.  Because everyone wants to be wanted. The only thing better, is if that wanting is mutual. the only thing real, is the ability to feel -- out of our thoughts, into our bodies, to maybe even open our hearts. Feeling is feeling, in real time. No planning allowed.

I assume we all find it curious when we are sought out, particularly in the game of love. Unabashedly so, i asked what prompted his outreach. he met my vulnerability with his own + answered, “i thought you could open my heart.” briefly blindsided, i considered what a burden to bear -- to open anothers’ heart, considering how challenging it is to open our own.

This led me down a mental maze of memories, relationships past -- emotions and wonder. Our emotions are our responsibility. Even allowing someone the power to “hurt” you is placing responsibility on another. When we are hurt in love, did we enter into those partnerships hurting? If it is true that we date ourselves, when we date an insecure human, we are also insecure. No one can fix you, or make you full. You must be full, first. And once full, the choice to let love in, relies on you.
But, we become hardened as we grow -- and take on the world, as the world takes us on. We resist opening up, scarred by past experience or guarded by fear of judgement or failure.
We carry the weight of our family history into relationships and hide behind our stories of hurt + heartbreak. The intrinsic childlike aura of love, sharing, caring, laughter + tears becomes costumed behind closed off adulthood, fearful of pain.
We are so fearful to feel yet we constantly crave connection.
How disconnected!

Fundamentally -- we are animals, born to procreate, physically inclined to touch + feel. We eat with our eyes. We want what we see. That carnal attraction is chemical, hormonal, and in real time, unplanned. -- to touch + be touched. But physical attraction alone is not enough to sustain long term love.

And while i don’t know much, i can tell you only thru my experience, that If you don’t want to f*ck on the first date, there is only a small chance this will change. So, no matter how great they look in photos, how good they look on paper, or how normal their family seems, or that they treat you like gold-- if you have zero interest in ripping their clothes off when you are STONE COLD SOBER, get out. we are all animals. Sexual chemistry cannot be justified via resume or dating app profile. You just gotta feel it.  

Once the physical checks out, then check under the hood - within + without. To find love is to feel love, for yourself first. fall in love with you: dark + light. good + bad. We all have demons. Embrace those too. It is thru darkness we grow. Self love allows for shared love. And with love, in love -- you open, you blossom, you share. Selfish to be selfless, because what is love without sharing, Everything: Laughter, conversation, success, failure, food, experience, emotion, desire + fear. and what is life without love? Lonely. To be loved, is to love. To be vulnerable is to be open. To be messy, sexy, raw + real. To indulge + devour, physically, mentally + spiritually.

and in love, you grow into or out of — together or apart. If energy pulls you together, you grow in love, and evolve together -- into better versions of yourselvesin a journey, an evolution, a discovery of us and our counterpart thru time + change, stability + unpredictability, trust + vulnerability. With unseen circumstances + unpredictable personalities. I recently heard someone say, “If you want love, be lovely.” Funny, but it resonated. And in all this love lesson, i dont think ive ever been in love. loved? yes. And obsessed, infatuated, yearned, and lost. But when you love your life, you become love. A hopeless romantic, we are the energy we attract + i feel so much love. But there is always more. To get + to give. There is nothing more real, then the ability to feel. Out of our thoughts and into our hearts. In real time. just like life, or a @boxandflow class, “it isn’t easy, but it doesn’t have to be so hard.” ease over resistance, even in love.

#workhard #livyoung

officially o l i v i a

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Officially olivia. And changing everyday. Same me, but always different. Completely unpredictable. And totally unplanned.

We’re living in this age of infatuation. Outward obsession with appearance, testing ourselves to decipher real from fake. Which makes it even more thrilling to check under the hood, look within, and be open to learn more about you --- everyday.

Because connecting to you, results to deeper to everyone + everything around you.
This weekend thrilled me.
I opened up
And threw up
Was vulnerable in conversation, emotion, action + reaction. Vulnerable in teaching. Present in everything. Present to the point of indulging in 5 drinks, 5 drinks too many, and spending sunday AM, after teaching and during teacher auditions, throwing up in the box + flow bathroom, just after crying out of gratitude + fear, to a familiar stranger, in bed nonetheless.
To know yourself is to grow yourself.
To test your limits, and others. To learn more about you, everyday.
I’ll tell you this much, i’ve never felt so alive. And so nauseous.
I pushed boundaries, tested limits, ruffled feathers, and had mine ruffled.  
What do you do when interesting conversations come up and go down?

Wouldn’t life be boring if we didn’t allow ourselves to feel? Sad + surprise. Hope + hurt. Filled + fueled. Grateful + disappointed. I felt all of it. Within 24 hours. Laughed, cried, indulged, unhinged, messy in everything. All dressed up + all stripped down, and the one thing that stayed the same throughout. Was me. As i am. Same me but always different. With heart. And head. Crazy and composed. Officially olivia. As i am.