I have just returned from Venice. My incredible mom, Bobbi, came to visit me and I showed her around Italy for ten days. It was truly the ultimate blessing to have my mom here and to celebrate and share my love of Italy with her.
People ask me what makes Italy so special? There are so many things I can say – it’s the beauty of everywhere you go, the incredible people, the food (OMG the food), the history, the art – and then, more and more, it is seeing the way Italians live.
Italians work to live – they don’t live to work. There’s a way of life here where people truly slow down to the speed of life.
There’s a sense of humanness here that I didn’t realize I was losing by living in Manhattan (which has been my first love).
People look you in the eye here.
They don’t rush you.
They expect you to take your time.
They expect you to live. And laugh. And love.
And you can tell that they are doing the same.
I know I have rose-colored glasses on right now as so much of this experience is new, yet I just had to share it with you because it’s both refreshing for me, but also confusing.
I have prided myself for being on the go for much of my life. Being busy. Getting it done. Doing more. Being more. And then doing it again. I have always worked hard and played hard.
Today I woke up at 8am! 8am. I’m the guy that has spent a lot of my life waking up at 5am (you have seen me talk about this).
I am slowing down more and more. Or at least I am trying to. I’m realizing that I am addicted to doing.
And I am not alone.
There’s a hustle culture today in our society (especially in America) and I am beginning to wonder – is this making our lives better?
When I wrote The Latte Factor, I began the book by having the main character, Zoey, ask herself a question. She sees a sign that says – If you don’t know where you are going you might not like where you end up.
That sign literally stops her in her tracks. She doesn’t know. She’s so busy doing that she has lost sight of where her soul wants to be.
The little book and story take her on a journey that helps her to self-discover what she really wants.
There is never a point in life to stop asking yourself what you want. To ask where you are going.
BUT – to do this – you must get quiet. It is hard to hear yourself think when you are busy, being busy, being busy, being busy.
We are busying ourselves to death.
You’re hearing from me less because I am consciously making an effort in Italy to live more – and do less.
Balance is a myth. Every time YOU spend time on one thing, you’re not spending time on something else.
Think about that today.
Carve out an hour for yourself.
Yes – a whole hour. Can’t do it today? How about this week?
Get off social media, Netflix, email, television, video games.
Get quiet. Take out a journal and write yourself a note – where do you really want to go?
What would you do more of if today was your last day to live more?
Go do that, my friend.
Sending you love from Florence.
PS: Come over and join me on Instagram – because that’s where I’m posting and sharing my Italy experience (if you care to follow along).
If you’re already there, thank you. We just went over 13,000 friends there, which I am super excited about. I love seeing all your comments!