Back in 1999, I got a call from Edward Norton about the possibility of using my Muscle Truck during the production of a little movie called “Fight Club.
Ultimately, that didn’t work out.
But it did put the movie on my radar. And the funny thing is, the first time I saw it, I didn’t love it. I didn’t get what all the hoopla was about other than the fact that Brad Pitt got in wicked shape. The movie was just too dark (both the theme and the style) for my taste.
Cut to August 2012:
I now see I originally missed the point and have since become a huge fan.
So what does this have to do with me getting back in the ocean after a year and half?
Well it goes something like this:
I love to surf.
I love it in spite of the fact that I’m not very good. I’m afraid of big waves, other surfers, seaweed getting tangled on me, the thought of being held under water and probably a half a dozen other things.
But for the last ten years, I would surf most weekends in the summer (unless the waves were too big or the water was too crowded). Then suddently, last summer, I didn’t surf at all. I was under a lot of stress and I spent most weekends working or at least acting busy.
Then I hurt my back.
Then winter came and it was too cold and besides, I was working too much… BLAH, BLAH, BLAH!
Pretty soon, I became a person that didn’t surf. I just stopped thinking about it.
If I did think about it, I knew I was not conditionied enough to paddle well and that makes me really afraid… I’d tell myself that I might get caught in the “impact zone,” and get held under.
So now, this activity that used to bring me so much joy creates panic instead.
This is where Tyler Durden got involved.
I read a blog post of quotes from “Fight Club” on minimalists.com, one of my favorite websites.
I love the quotes so much, I bought the book.
Reading the book allowed the characters to come alive for me. I understood them so much more.
As Joshua said in his blog post: Fight Club is not a film about fighting. It’s a narrative about life and about getting rid of the corporate and cultural influences (or perhaps the confluence of the two) that control our lives.
Next, I watched the movie. Twice. Now, I can say that I’m slightly obsessed. I highly, highly recommend it.
The quotes that got me back in the water:
I can’t get back of the missed opportunities for surfing but I CAN get in the water now. If my back hurts or I’m afraid to surf, I can boogie board.
Just being in the ocean is what’s important. Riding a wave, however you do it, is pure bliss… which is why you’ll see me out there, with the same big smile on my face, as all of the 12 year olds.
I am so blessed to love my job. I train some of Hollywood’s hottest actors and I definitely don’t want to give it up. I also created and brought to market, one of the single-most effective pieces of exercise equipment, The Valslide, and it’s needs my love and attention to grow.
That being said, I definitely took on a bit too much and didn’t carve out enough time to play.
(All work and no play makes Val a grumpy girl.)
This created additional stress and a couple bouts of depression. I had to get out from under. I had to clear my path and re-align my priorities. I needed to reclaim a sense of joy and I needed new peak experiences. Getting back in the ocean is that first step for me.
I have too much stuff. When I don’t make time for play, I find myself seeking an outlet for pent up energy by ordering things on Amazon.
While I do believe in reading and I love my books, when I’m ordering new ones before the last have even shipped, let alone read, it’s time to stop. When I’m working too hard to pay for things (or a lifestyle) I don’t need, it’s time to stop.
When I shop more than I laugh, it’s time to stop.
Thank you Tyler Durden for my wake up call.
Thank you Joshua & Ryan from The Minimalists for the blog post.
I am now seeking new experiences, relationships, opportunities and laughter.
Who’s with me? Leave a comment below and let me know! I’ll be reading and responding to all of them!