I completed my Vedic (aka Transcendental) meditation training this week and maybe I’m connecting things that are just coincidences, but after 5 days of practicing TM, I feel like there’s some synchronicity happening.

On Wednesday, I finally booked my plane ticket to Poland. That evening at the training, a couple came and the husband was Polish.

On Thursday, I was on the train home and I saw a dude wearing a Green Day t-shirt from their last world tour. Listed on the back of it was a city in Poland. Green Day had also just released Bang Bang that morning. 

Finally, yesterday I told my cousin that I was leaving for Poland on the 18th of October and she reminded me that the number 18 is a lucky number for Jews. The letters of the Hebrew word “chai” add up to 18 and I have a gold chai that I was given at my baby naming. (I just had to Google all of that, btw, because I am a #badjew.)


All About That Quiet

Last night I attended my very first Big Quiet gathering in Central Park’s Summerstage venue. I’d met Jesse Israel, the founder of The Big Quiet and MediClub, but I had yet to attend one of the actual events. Part of me hates the idea of paying more than $10 to meditate (because meditation is free, goddamnit) but then I remember how great the experience of group meditation is and I asked my friend to grab me a ticket when she was buying a few weeks back.

Note to self: Bring a yoga block to sit on next time. We arrived 30 minutes or so before showtime and put down our towels before indulging in samples from sweetgreen and a vegan cookie company (they were oatmeal and thus just OK). I saw a couple of people that I knew and eventually the lights on the main stage went down and my friends and I sat on our towels. 

We were all lead in a vocal exercise to get us revved up for the meditation by an incredible voice manipulative/beat boxer/whatever and the organizers of The Big Quiet and MediClub came onstage after to tell us more about their organization.

Jen Kluckowski lead the actual meditation. I never reached a truly relaxed state, sadly. Probably because I was uncomfortable, first sitting on my knees and then switching to a seated cross-legged position. It was nice to hear the wind and the birds though. I wished it was more guided, or at least that there were more moments of, ‘when your mind has wandered…’

I’m glad I went because like I said before, group meditation is great, and sometimes better than solo meditation. My next move is to grit my teeth and pay for ClubMedi the next time they host a sitting. Because in a world with so much noise, we need that quiet so much more. 

Check them out here on Facebook for information on the next gathering. 

I spent the better part of a year working for a company called Flavorpill Media and I loved it. I loved the people and I loved the mission. It was really hard to be recruited away but they offered me more opportunity to grow and more money (though the money was only 10% of why I accepted). Flavorpill launched their newest product, a personal development site called EverUp, this week and in honor of it, they hosted a bunch of really cool seminars. 

I went to the 8am seminar at Flavorpill HQ about the ROI of Mindfulness. I’d seen most of this presentation before but it was expanded and even more awesome. Jesse Israel, founder of The Big Quiet, talked to us about his career (he left the record label that he started while at NYU that signed MGMT) and how he got into doing what he’s doing now before he lead us through an awesome meditation. I was interviewed after having been the one who started the meditation breaks at Flavorpil during my time there and being that I was a regular meditator.

After a quick chat with Jesse and saying goodbyes to my old colleagues, I headed over to WeWork on East 28th for a seminar on how to “pivot your career” giving by an awesome woman named Jenny Blake. She spent 5 years in Silicon Valley working for Google and after taking her sabbatical, she decided to quit to up and move to New York City. Everyone, of course, called her crazy. She’s working on her second book and is sometimes a career coach.

We filled out some worksheets, generated some ideas, and we had an awesome time. She also gave some super interesting and possibly startling (for employers) stats:

  • 83% of people want to get a new job in the next year.
  • Four to five years is the tenure for someone at their company.
  • 25% of people are looking for new jobs because of money.
  • 45% are looking because they see no growth, feel under appreciated, and they want to work somewhere where they can have a visible impact on the company.
  • The career ladder is gone. 

She said change nowadays is the only constant. When employers ask her what they can do to incentivize their employees to stay for more than a year or two, she says they can’t and they need to accept that. It helped to hear that what I’ve been going through is the new norm – even if that new norm is kind of tricky to deal with sometimes. I think it’s probably a better trait to be flexible and able to deal with change than being miserable in a job you hate because it pays you well. Money can only buy you so much.

I chatted with her after and asked her advice about something specific before saying goodbyes to more former colleagues and continuing on to lunch with Ben at Eisenberg’s (tasty food, crap service). 

These seminars couldn’t have come along at a better time and I am so, so thankful for them.