Monday, July 27, 2009

It's easy being positive when things are going well

Wow, the surf just keeps on coming! What an amazing
east coast summer lots and lots of surf. People are
getting used to surfing almost every day. Spirits seem
high and not too many people are getting too upset if
for whatever reason, like work or family obligations,
they miss a session. Surfers are smiling and some
feeling muscles aching. The mood in the lineup seems
significantly lighter and more friendly.

A client of mine was telling me how happy they were
over these past weeks. The client is not a surfer or even
one who loves the beach and ocean. What the client did
say struck me "it's easy to be positive when positive things
are happening, when things are going well". They weren't
sure if they felt that because they'd been working
hard on reframing the way they looked at the world and the
way they spoke to themselves, or that nothing negative had
happened. Interesting way to look at it, kind of a chicken
and egg thing.

Wonder if the same applies to surfers. Is the lineup friendly
because we've had surf? Humm

Monday, July 20, 2009

It's not the obvious

Back in the water! It's difficult to describe just
how wonderful it is to be back surfing. I realize that
seven weeks is really not much time in the big scheme
of things. My seven week hiatus has taught me a bunch
of interesting lessons about myself, about surfing, and
about life.

Sitting in the lineup talking to my friends is somehow
very different than sitting on the beach or in someone's
yard. The feeling of being amongst old friends laughing,
teasing, watching each other is special. Most people who
don't surf see a break with lots of people in the water.
That's the obvious but it's not the obvious that I missed,
not the just simple act of riding a wave. It was the whole
experience that I longed for. The feel of the water, the
ebb and flow of the swell, the fish, the warmth of the sun and
of friends.

Many people look at life and see what is the
most obvious, most observable. They notice
what kind of house you live in, your clothes, or the
car you drive. They often get hung up on appearances
yet never realize that what is not so obvious can be
more important, more fulfilling and satisfying.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Passing it on

Do you have something you love and want to
share with the ones you care about? What do you
hope they'll get from your sharing? What lessons
and experiences are you hoping they'll learn? We
Surfers love to share the stoke. Why?

Two recent experiences put me in touch with our
desire to "pass it on" to others. I took both my grandkids
to the beach the other morning. We strolled along the sand,
looked at shells and sand crabs, and Simon (my grandson)
walked on the deck of a surfboard. He smiled as he walked.
Thanks to the boards rocker, as he approached its' nose,
the board bounced a bit. Rather than getting scared he laughed
and moved closer to the nose bouncing as he went. As soon as
he reached the end he put his little toes
over the edge, spun around, and walked back to the tail laughing
all the way. Simon walked and bounced about 10 times before
it was time to go home. He didn't want to leave. It was too much
fun, this walking on a board. I thought a lot, as we headed home,
about just how much I want to "pass on" surfing and all its' lessons
to my grandkids.

There is a photo and podcast posted on Jim Moriarty's blog
Ocean Beaches and Waves (
of Norman Ollestad. Ollestad is the author of the best selling book
"Crazy for the Storm". The photo, podcast, and the book all
touch upon the same theme "passing it on". Ollestad speaks of the
lessons his father taught him in the surf and how those lessons saved
his life. He also spoke about his wish to "pass it on" to his own children.

Surfing and our love for all it has to offer touches us in ways we feel
compelled to share. Despite the crowds, despite it's popularity we
still want to share not only the stoke but the real lessons to be learned
from the surfing life.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


I love Yvon Chouinard the founder of
Patagonia. He is a surfer, fisherman, hiker,
climber, a businessman, and an environmental
hero. If you aren't familiar with Patagonia and
the company's philosophy you should be. Do some
reading and get Chouinard's book "Let my people
go surfing" and it just might change your perspective
on your own habits. Check out some of the talks he's
given that are posted on YouTube. "Live an examined
life, examine everything you do" is Yvon's credo.

In my office I call it mindfulness or intentionality.
You might also see it as doing what you do on purpose.
Living an intentional, mindful life can make you happier
healthier, and give you more peace. The Patagonia philosophy
asks the same thing of business. Act intentionally, live, consume,
and even manufacture in an examined purposeful way.

The best consumer is one who consumes less. Simplify
your life in order to make it sustainable. You'll feel a nice
sense of freedom when you do. As I've written before,
resources, whether they be our human resources or the earth's
are finite. Make them last.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009


The human body has an infinite ability to
heal itself. The human psyche is also an amazing thing.
Working together the mind and the body can work
what some might think are miracles. They can't
however, work their miracles without action on your part,
without your help.

A wound will heal if you keep it clean and bandaged
properly. A bone will heal if you help it along by
proper rest, nutrition, and time. A spirit can heal
with the help of others, a reframing of how you
look at a problem, and a belief.

My cast came off today! The healing of my broken ankle
continues. My spirit is soaring knowing that I can return
to the ocean. My doctor told me I can swim, paddle, bike
ride, kyak,fish and return to pretty much everything that does not
require impact. "Let it heal a bit more before popping up
on your board" he told me. "No worries" I replied with
my spirit high. Can't wait to get wet. How do others do it
I wonder? How do they heal without the ocean, without surfing?