yoga in Shanghai

Through The Lens Of A Dreamer

I would like to thank all the many people who take the time to read my weekly blog and all the people that have watched the short films and stories that have been produced. Cheers to that!

Today I wanted to write a bit more about what keeps me going and motivated. I have to admit that I am not as much as a film-maker as I am a story-teller and I am not as much as a story-teller as I am a dreamer and entrepreneur.

I believe in the impossible, I believe in dreams, in visions and living life to be more and to achieve greatness.  I am actually reading a New York Times best seller called, “The School of Greatness” by Lewis Howes and there is an excerpt from Chapter 1 which says that most people don’t go after their dreams because they don’t know if it is possible.

He goes on to say that if you look through the small end of a telescopic lens, then things seem so far away but if you look through the opposite end of the lens, then things appear to be much closer than they appear.

taking a break in Shanghai

I have to admit that there are some dreams that I have that are so real in my mind and so vivid that I know that they will eventually become a reality. I can touch and feel them in my mind that they appear to be alive.

I use this website as the double LL to “Live Life” without limitations and to go after your dreams passionately by believing that we all have the seeds of greatness but just like salmon in the river, we will always be swimming against the current of life.  We can choose to drift downstream or swim upstream.  As Lewis says this is where greatness lies, in the ability to swim upstream.

So what are some of my big dreams? To shoot the “adventure towards the mindfulness” series in many different cities across the world, so we can share the gift of the present moment with as many people as possible, to live happier and more joyous lives.

#theschoolofgreatness, #dreambig, #dreambigger, #adventuretowardsmindfulness

adventure towards mindfulness in Shanghai

Believing is Seeing

And that’s a wrap…..thank you Shanghai!

So what’s it like to shoot in Shanghai? I have to admit that I have been to Shanghai four times already but I never really wanted to explore it, so at most I spent less than 48 hours in the city.  I thought it was just another city with the fancy towers and ultra-modern subway system.  This time I decided to shoot the next episode of the adventure series here and I began to get somewhat excited over the project and….then the city itself.

This time I spent a full week preparing and getting the shoot ready, scouting out locations, meeting up with Angel to go over my story-board and during that process I began to really enjoy Shanghai.  I found it was a really cool mix between Western and Eastern cultures with an accent of European blood which has infused the fabric of the land.  Most people were very helpful to help me translate or order food or simply help me in the right direction.  This was a truly great and welcoming experience since my view was tainted from being in other less-known cities in China. I assumed (and admittedly stereotyped) that all the places would be filled with less-than hospitable folks just running around, hustling for a buck or two in a country filled with air pollution.

drinking soup in Shanghai

drinking soup in Shanghai

However, Shanghai was very, very, very welcoming and friendly. It was a joy to be there and the Yoga community was very supportive.  This changed my attitude towards the city and my focus was reignited with getting the job done and being on the pulse of shooting a great story.  I have never experienced a country where the weather was constantly changing from warm to cold to sunny to cloudy and the anticipation of actually having some colour in the sky was slowly drifting away.  Plus many of the locations that were initially assigned to our story board were no longer available unless a permit was produced.  So for the first 3 days it seemed that this project was doomed. The outlook was bleak and the best case scenario would of been to re-schedule until spring of 2016, unless a miracle in the weather changed from the Universe.

But I have learnt that there are many opportunities in obstacles and for the most part having faith is a big part to big dreams.  Believing is seeing and after 3 days of dark cloudy skies, miserable temperatures and overcast skies I had faith that the sun would come out. I believed and spoke it into existence. And it came out on a jolly good winter’s day for the most remarkable sunshine ever.  Needless to say we shot the video and got the story.  Job well done to all.

The big ticket here is that in order to believe, you have to be focused on the present moment. Not worrying about yesterday and tomorrow but to focus on what’s happening at this moment right now.  This is where the universe will conspire to help you out.

The opportunities presented were many. Here’s what I learnt:

  1. You got to believe and never stop believing
  2. Be in the present moment and focus your energy on what’s happening at this moment right now.
  3. There is always an opportunity to be more! This means to be more patient, to be more tolerant, to be more in the present moment

Ultimate Dream Shanghai

One of my dreams was to continue the series of the Adventure Towards Mindfulness!

To continue this project in every city in the world and to feature an amazing person who has disciplined themselves to being in the present moment.

I am a firm believer that living in the present moment is where we can be our best.  The present moment is where we can harness all of our potential energy to focus on what we can engage in this moment right now.  If we are able to not have broken focus by allowing distractions to enter the mind then one can only image the potential of what can be accomplished with intensity and efficiency.  This means that we can achieve anything that the mind can believe.

There is a saying that has resonated within me and that your future begins with what you do at this moment right now. Wow!  The decisions I make at this moment right now, can either help to leverage me forward or act to move me backward.  It’s that simple but not that simple because we allow fear and feelings to get in the way.  That’s why focusing on the present moment is so critical to make the best choices for your dreams.

I decided to shoot our next episode in Shanghai and I was able to collaborate with the amazing Angel D to shoot the story in 5 days.  During this time we were able to understand Angel’s approach to life and to yoga.  She has disciplined her mind to be aware of her thoughts and to focus her mind on the thoughts that matter to her.  Her discipline is developed through years of engaging in challenging poses continuously.  Without the ability to focus in on what she is doing now, her concentration can waiver and the thoughts of pain, hurt or negativity can easily enter her mind.  But when she is able to embrace those thoughts and simply allow them to pass through her mind, then she can be immersed in the challenge of the moment.

This challenge has allowed Angel to become one of the leading yoga instructors in Shanghai.