is less more? lets find out.


I am a do-er, a go-er, and also a feeler.

Unlike most, it takes much more energy for me to do LESS. That is where the yoga comes in, the slow, the flow. Fighting comes naturally. I have to force myself to slow down.

Since starting box + flow in November and for 15 years prior, I’ve been on the go.  For half of my 30 years alive, I have been moving, shaking + doing.  Daily 5am wake ups are seamlessly followed by magic hours. 5-6am is when I get my best work done, with upwards of 30 emails sent before 7am. For 15 years, no matter what stage of life, such is my routine: Wake up, work, work out, work, go go go, sleep. The busi-ness + business is fulfilling and exhausting. When I usually arrive two minutes late, it isn’t because im sitting with a latte waiting for the weather to change. It means I lost track of the miles I was running or was finishing a conference call.

I am efficient, but sometimes overly so. I stack meetings back to back or phone calls in transit to make the most of my time. Time is an asset that I can + cannot control. As such, I approach it strategically. It isn’t about having enough time, it's about what you do with the time that you have.

So, this week, I'm choosing to do less. Or, I'm going to try. It has taken me 15 years to realize that things take time.

Saturday night, I went to the new Four Seasons restaurant the Grill, to see my old friend Mario, who along with two partners just reopened the renowned Seagrams building to both criticism and acclaim.

totally glam at the grill.

totally glam at the grill.

I met Super Mario on Mulberry Street seven years ago when he was opening that little Torrisi turkey sandwich shop. I was wearing a red miu miu coat and a polka dot dress en route to my internship at food + wine magazine and popped in to welcome him to the neighborhood. I was so shy after that encounter that I wouldn’t even walk on the same side of the street for fear id run into him. Mario called Kate Krader to inquire about me + without fail I bumped into him on the block shortly thereafter. Our first date was at Lever House where Eli Kulp was the chef. The random run ins became quick make out sessions outside of Parm while Mario was working late and as I was walking home. We kept it casual as I was adamant that I wouldn’t date a chef as long as I was working in the business.

Fast forward seven years and that chef has built a global empire from a small sandwich shop. The flagship Carbone, carries Mario’s last name and is one of the highest coveted reservations in the country. But Mario will always be super Mario to me. On my 24th birthday he surprised me with boozy slushies, a limo to Lugers and limitless support. He watched me grow at Altamarea Group but knew there was something yet to be discovered in my story. We lost frequent touch over the years but always checked in. He is a forever friend, gives me regular advice and brought big congrats when I opened box + flow. It’s almost as if we’ve seen each other grow up in a lot of ways.

My point is less about Mario and more about what he has built and is building. He had a dream. He has big dreams. So do i. but dreams take time. And it is only when I slow down, that I actually realize how much i need to practice what i preach, to find my balance. I need to let things unfold without force. I need to flow thru the fight. or maybe for now, just flow.

We can’t force the future. We cant change the past.  So why not just BE - in the present.

That is my focus for now.

Yesterday, with a fiery Four Seasons induced hangover, I hosted my team for drinks after class. My team has a nice ring to it. We all “work” together but at different times. It is important for everyone to get to know each other and as important for each to share our own stores + connection to fight + flow. These people aren’t my employees, they’re my team, my teachers, my friends. I look up to them. I respect them, I learn from them. My team has grown + changed over time. Another reminder: things take time to grow.

box + flow dream team.

box + flow dream team.

So, What do you need? What do you have?  What do you want?

AND How are you going to get it? With more fight? Or more flow? Or maybe a bit of both.

Me? I will always have more to do. I'm a do-er. I #workhard to #livyoung. But for now, I'm choosing flow. At least for today. Less mindLESSness. More mindFULness. Less thinking. More feeling. We can do it together. Lets #flowthruthefight.

Olvia YoungComment