Why do you act in this world?
Learning. I love to learn.
The more you have new experiences, the more you learn about yourself, others and the world. It continues the path of growth. Without growth and learning, there is just no forward momentum.
What makes you think that you make a difference in this world?
It is hard right now.
Relationships. The people that I touch and the people that touch me.
Knowing that the things that I say and do have inspired people in the past.
I also have fairly deep spiritual beliefs, that each person holds a spark of the divine. As such everybody makes a difference—everybody does—whether they know it or not, whether they are intentional about it or not. But I definitely lose sight of how I personally make a difference, that’s a harder one—it is easy to make it impersonal.
You mentioned that you have inspired people in the past and you make it sound like you have some form of evidence.
It is nothing huge, but my efforts to be healthy have definitely caught the attention of friends and family; for example I worked with personal trainers in the past and I have actually inspired a couple of people to start working with personal trainers themselves, and they have told me that.
The wonderful thing is you only know you have made a difference when people tell you. That’s why I believe so strongly in gratitude and expressing that. Why I love that you told Emily that she was the best person I had met this weekend, because I probably wouldn’t have said that to her, at least not this soon. That’s the kind of love that needs to be in this world.
I love that—it is scary and hard, but I love it.
What gives you hope for the future?
There is a lot that has to do with inner strength. It is funny because in every single answer is my mother. So I would say that my mom gives me hope. She is an extra-ordinary person and I love her more than anything in the world. She keeps me going, other people do too, Kevin [her fiancé] does too, but my mom is just… her and I have a very deep relationship, we always had.
You are the first one who has taken a retrospective look on what gives you hope. Everybody seems to mention external things, or people or trends they are seeing, what about your mother and your relationship with her gives you hope?
She is a very spiritual person she believes in past lives. She believes in… faith is not the word she would use, but… she believes that we actually design our lives before we live them. Some days I believe that and some days I don’t. It brings me comfort to know that I subscribe to the belief that I chose to have this life, chose to live the life I am living now and have the experiences that I am having now. I trust in that, that if I chose this for myself, then I knew what I was doing.
I got most of my beliefs from my mom and she has had a very hard life, lots of knocks in this life and in past lives. She is just the strongest person I know. I have watched her—since I was little—growing into who she is, and been able to bear witness to that and let her be who she is, even when I at times think she is dorky, but seeing her joy, gives me joy, and seeing her hope gives me hope. Recently, especially, I have been in a lot of awe at how selfless her love is for me, and that is pretty incredible.
Have you told her?
Not that, not that specifically, but I was just thinking that I need to tell her that. And I will.
If you were to condense what gives you hope into three words or a very, very short sentence, what would it be?
I have the concept. I just have to articulate it. “My mother’s infinite love and joy.”
When I have a sad Sunday and don’t know what to do, if you could make me do one thing on Sad Sunday, what would it be?
I know I need to take my own advice here. I would ask you “what is your favorite song that gets you to dance?”, and I would put that on and I would have you dance. It has to be like an up song. It doesn’t really have to, but…
Will you put on your favorite song next time you have a Sad Sunday? Will you dance 'till you smile? Let me know how it goes in the comments below.