Everything in our world is energy. If you break down atoms down to the smallest form, their particles are vibrating and emitting energy. As human beings, we are made of the same energy. Your feelings and thoughts control your energy vibration. Positive thoughts turn into positive energy which will then attract positive people and positive circumstances into your life. If you have negative thoughts, it will attract negative people and negative circumstances into your life. The secret is to be and feel happy right now. You can attract anything in this world that you want if your intentions are pure and you’re vibrating at your highest frequency. This is also known as the law of attraction.
I met Amena Melody in a Trader Joe’s parking lot a couple of years ago. She was a beautiful blonde gal locked out of her car and I was going to the grocery store. I told myself if this girl is still here when I come outside, I will strike up a conversation with her. Sure enough, when I walked outside, she was still there. We started talking. After that day, I had the good fortune of getting to know her really well over the next year. She completely changed my outlook and what I thought was possible in life because she is such a beautiful spirit and attracts everything she wants. She is also speaking beautiful things into this world constantly. She travels any chance she gets. She’s a songwriter, a singer, musician, and she is going to school right now to learn more about how she can change the education system for use. Amena is one of my favorite people to talk to. She has an incredible life story. Today, we’re going to have an amazing episode.
Listen To The Episode Here:
The Law of Attraction with Amena Melody
Please welcome, Amena Melody.
Amena, where are you from?
Originally, I am from Houston, Texas/Austin. I went to high school in Austin. I’m a Texas baby, Southern gal.
Please tell everybody how many siblings you have.
I’ll call them all out and everyone can count as I call them out really quickly. Paul, Regina, Ginger, Aaron, Faith, Evie, Mary, Amy, Amena, Mercy, John, Miracle. There you go. There are twelve of us.
You had a pretty awesome, interesting upbringing too. You guys traveled around a lot.
Crazy and very unconventional was my upbringing. The Von Trapp family singers are similar, like Cheaper by the Dozen. My parents started out, just the two of them, singing and traveling. They’re a part of an interesting group during the free love ‘60s time. Through that, they started having tons of kids, lots of them. Kid by kid, we joined the bandwagon for singing. We did a TV show. It was a lot in religious light. It was for kids, so we would sing. I’m so embarrassed of it actually to this day. I don’t ever want anyone to find out. I started out just doing all that and singing in a religious light for them, but it’s always been a big part of me. I think that my upbringing with the traveling and the moving has brought on a lot of this adventure spirit that I carry with me.
Were you just singing for as long as you can remember?
Yeah. Instruments didn’t start until I decided I needed to learn an instrument. I was almost forced to learn piano and I didn’t like it. My teacher would swat my hands when I messed up. It wasn’t a good experience. But singing, I don’t think that there’s ever been a time where I wasn’t singing. It was like you grow up, you eat breakfast, that’s what we did. You wake up and you sing every day. My parents and how I was raised and all that, I think it’s so important. I think it’s everybody’s story. Your upbringing, that’s what shapes you.
Everybody’s got a great story. You were doing the show, traveling around. You went to regular high school though?
Seven different high schools. I homeschooled not for high school. I remember I was homeschooled, did quite a few different private schools. We did too much moving around. Jumping from school to school, I did homeschool. In that, I did two grades in a year. It’s this crazy “go at your own pace” homeschool. I was in team with this other girl and I’m like, “I’m going to do more school than you this year.” I was in fourth grade. With that, I did two grades in a year. I graduated when I was fifteen, turning sixteen because of that.
Graduated high school?
Yeah. My birthday is in June. I had a birthday the next month after I graduated. I didn’t do the whole elementary to junior high to high school. I didn’t stay; too many, lots of schools, lots of people though.
You’re fifteen or sixteen. You’re done with high school, what’s next?
This ties back into my upbringing. I moved out of the house at fifteen years old. It was not in a good way with my parents. I’ve always been very headstrong in the things that I believe in. With religion and my upbringing, it was very much enforced on us. It wasn’t a choice. You had to believe. If you didn’t, then here’s the door.
That being forced on you, did you accept it or were you like, “Fuck this. I don’t believe in this idea.”
That was the “Fuck this” part. At that age, I’m being asked to go and perform and keep doing the singing as my parents had these engagements. I was like, “I don’t believe in this. I don’t want to memorize the Bible. I don’t want to do any of this. This is not authentic to me. It feels like a show.” That wasn’t very well understood or taken by my parents. In that, I left home and I lived with some of my older siblings, sisters, and then moved to Austin. Actually, I was already in Austin at that time, just graduating. I ended up getting an apartment as soon as I turned eighteen, then it was party time. I could do whatever I wanted. Strict upbringing.
I definitely had many good times. I tried college during that time. I didn’t know what I wanted to do. I didn’t know who I was. I had taken some really dramatic steps to try to find that. There’s a party stage; I think a lot of people need to let it out. It doesn’t matter if you come from a strict background, I think that everyone’s got something they need to go and figure out. I had a few years of that. Started to wind down and get the repercussions of my decisions in life. That’s when I went home and I made amends with my family. That was the start, I would say, of everything that I’m doing now and everything that I’ve done that has led up to now.
Were you talking to your family in that two-year span where you moved out to Austin or just no communication? Your parents at least?
Parents, no. We might have talked here and there but there was no relationship. I had older siblings, of course, there are twelve of us. A lot of them have faced maybe even harder than what I did, so they understood. I kept contact with them. It’s cut off. That was big. That was so huge. It was biting my pride. I just knew that it was what I needed to do. It was a very hard year. But that’s when I picked up guitar. That’s when I found a love for working out. That’s when I started to dig deep and find myself. It wasn’t until after I built that mend with my parents. There was no harmony. Life was like, you can’t move on without forgiveness. From there, life started to get really interesting.
Are you still in Austin at this time?
This is in Houston, Texas. I have a lot of family in Austin but parents are in Houston. I spent so much time alone in that point. It was almost like spiritual angst. When you’re very confused spiritually, I feel that’s sometimes worse than abuse. It’s a very internal struggle. I had to deal with that, with my own beliefs and going home, and standing up to my parents but in a way that we could get along. In that time, I spent so much time alone, writing and reading and playing music, just figuring out who am I, what do I like to do, almost going back to childlike discovery of who I was.
I think everybody should definitely spend an extended period of time by themselves, alone. You really do find yourself.
I don’t think that that ever ends. That period of being alone, I still need it. I have to have it.
It’s good for everybody.
It is good. I ended up in San Francisco. How did that happen?
That was also a rough period too, right? In the beginning when you first got here, that’s a wild story. Please go into that. How much money did you go out to San Francisco with? This is what baffles me, how you made this work. It is one of the most amazing things I’ve ever heard.
All of this that I’m saying is leading up to that ability to jump like that. I just got to a place where I have this one life and I’m looking around, I’m twenty at that time, and people are getting married. I’m just like, “This is not the life I want; the 9 to 5, graduating from college.” I don’t want that. There’s so much more, I’m unfulfilled. I had an apartment at that time. I’d gotten in a really bad accident on the freeway and just left with like, “What am I doing here? What is this going to look like five years from now?”
What kind of accident?
I got T-boned in the intersection of feeder road freeway. That was insane. It was a really bad day. It was Super Bowl Sunday. I’m driving and I’m feeling, just in my mind, there’s got to be more to life than this. I’m over it. I don’t feel like I’m living in any potential or working towards it. Just completely, it felt really bad that day. I remember I pulled up to a light and there was this homeless guy with the sign, “Anything helps.” I remember telling myself, “The real me, if I didn’t feel this bad, I would just roll my window down and I would help this guy.” In that moment, I immediately rolled my window down and I’d tell this guy everything that I felt I needed to hear in that moment. I didn’t have a lot of cash on me but I gave it to him. I pulled forward. Take a left, and then boom. I’m hit. It’s amazing. That was a day that I could’ve died for sure. The car that was involved was completely totaled. Everyone was fine. I walked out with a little knee bruise. It was an insane experience.
Those kinds of experiences really give you the appreciation for how fragile life is. That was a little fire under me. A week after that accident, I started calling girlfriends over to my apartment. I was like, “Take whatever you want. Here’s my closet, you can have it.” The plan was to take one suitcase but it turned to two. “I’m only taking a suitcase, you empty it out.” Didn’t feel anything. I wanted to give everything. I wanted it to be an investment in this new life. I’m a firm believer, you’ve got to give to receive. Whatever area that was, I knew I was going to need some things when I landed. I was like, “I’m giving everything.”
That’s a great thing that you said that because that’s one of the universal laws right there. A lot of people just want to receive, receive, receive, and they ask for it but they’re not giving anything in return. In order to receive anything, you have to give. The more you give, the more you receive. It’s a very simple concept but people overlook that a lot. If you’re giving more than you’re receiving, there’s no choice but you’re going to get it back. It’s a natural law.
It’s a scary thing too to do. I’ll just say that. It’s not easy to just keep giving. That mentality, wanting to keep, we all have it. It’s protective. It’s when you break through that you start to realize everything’s flowing at you. Everything we need, we already have, we just have to put it out there. $700, two suitcases, and a guitar. This is crazy, but the thing I was worried about the most was when I get to San Francisco, how am I going to lug all this stuff around? It was too much for a girl to be carrying, two suitcases and a hard case guitar. That was my biggest worry for the trip. I just remember that being a thing.
Where were you going to live?
I had a sister that was there. At the time, she really needed someone. She was neither here nor there at that time in her life, dealing with her own things. I had a place to live for a month. I had no idea San Francisco was the most expensive city to live in. I found that out really quick when I got there.
That’s interesting too because if you did know that, it might have changed your thought process in going there.
If I could tell anybody anything, it’s sometimes you just need to do it. Stop Googling things and people and places. Seriously, it’s a beautiful thing to have Google. But put that down and just go and experience it. Good and bad times are going to come regardless. What are you setting your mind up for when you already have an idea of what it’s going to be? That’s the exciting part about it. I landed at the airport and I didn’t even have to think twice. I’m wearing an “I love New York” sweatshirt. This chick walks up to me and she’s like, “Are you from New York?” “No, I actually just landed from Texas.” Got to talk to her a little bit and she’s like, “Where are you headed?” They ended up going in the same direction as me. I didn’t have to carry a piece of luggage to the door.
Strangers just came up to you?
I’m sitting here, in my mind, “I’m going to get a cart. I’m going to jump on the BART,” which is the subway or whatever for San Francisco. I’m thinking of how I’m going to do everything. Everything you need, even the smallest little tiny worry, if you just keep going, what you need finds you. You got to jump and let them appear. That’s what I didn’t realize I was doing but I was. I’m there. I have a month where I’m staying. I told myself I was going to say yes to everything. I’m not going to say no to going here and there. I might have overdone it. In San Francisco, there are always a million things to do and it’s really exciting to be there. I really needed a job and I knew that. I don’t think that you just walk through life and everything attaches itself to you when you need it. I think that you really have to go out there and put the effort out. I made finding a job my full-time job. I would not work. I would sit at a coffee shop, eight hours a day and just shoot out resumes, making dollar bills fly.
I remember you telling me about your job experience and I feel like you went about it in a different way than most people. You were just literally talking to every single person you could. Not like sending in applications, but just attracting people, literally putting yourself out there, and talking to anybody that was there.
That right there is I’ve learned you can never stop doing that, because that’s when you get comfortable and you get stagnant. There’s always somebody to meet and there’s always some connection to make. It may not make sense for five years down the road, which has happened to me. I said yes to a birthday dinner, a bunch of people I didn’t know. While I’m sitting there, they were like, “We’re looking for someone to join our interior design company.” These people are renowned in what they do. I’m like, “Yeah, sure. I like interior design. I’ve always been into making things pretty.”
No experience whatsoever?
You had a knack for it but no college, training, anything.
It was so intimidating. That was the most intimidating interview I’ve ever had because we’re at dinner and there’s wine and food. It’s a light experience. But then the next day, the owner was like, “I want to meet with you.” I show up and it’s the whole team. Me and the whole team and I’m being interviewed by a team of five people. San Francisco, that’s when I had to pump it up another level because people are quick and it’s like, “Don’t waste time. Be on your toes.” I got the job and I worked with them.
Are you living with your sister at this point? Weren’t you homeless at one point around there?
Yes, I was living with my sister. Never homeless, I was a nomad this whole time for the most part. That month was coming to an end. The room that I was staying in, the girl, she wrote for a magazine, she was traveling, she was coming back, so I had to hurry up. If anybody knows anything about San Francisco, it’s crazy when it comes to housing and it’s really hard to find. You’ll pay $1,000 for a closet. I moved into a hostel. I lived in a hostel for a couple of months until finding another place and house. I was in a hostel called the El Capitan on Mission Street. It was in the middle of everything. I think it was a brothel at some point. That was an insane experience. I kept it moving. I kept it going.
San Francisco really taught me so much about myself and let me lay down a lot of insecurities. It’s a beautiful place for that because you’re just oversaturated. Everything is in your face, the raw reality of everything. You walk by someone shooting up heroine and then the next second you’re in stroller mom town in Noe Valley. It’s everything. It’s really, really great for you to figure out who you really are. On top of that, you’re pressed with who everyone else is. At that time, it was a very strong, expressive city. I found a love for people there. I moved into The Tenderloin. It was cheap. I paid $1,000 a month to live in The Tenderloin, but it’s not the prettiest place. I just had a heart for people while I was there. I would make pancakes and hot chocolate and go out and meet the locals. They would call me Snowflake in The Tenderloin. It’s very odd at that point for me to be walking those streets. It’s scary when you walk down and they’re calling out every drug that you can think of, offering it to you, verbally in your face.
When I first moved there, I went down to the market. The corner market guys are always my favorites. I always make friends with them. I was like, “What does everybody in this area like? I want to just give it to them. What do they like?” He just points to the $0.25 Twinkies. I don’t even know the name of all these things. Those oatmeal cream pies are delicious. I just grabbed a bunch of them, I put them on the counter and I was like, “I’ll take them all.” I just went out and I said, “I’m Amena and I just moved in. I just want to say hi. It’s good to be in your neighborhood.” I think that that really helped. Tenderloin’s intimidating otherwise.
How long were you over there for, in The Tenderloin?
About close to a year.
The interior design is going well? You’re still with them?
Yes. I worked in interior design. The company began to split at that time. It became either this or that. From that job, I worked an in-between job I worked as a bartender server and then I started to be like, “What am I doing?” I really love doing events. This is the city to create things. I just decided to start doing day-of-event coordinating. I just started doing cold outreach, using Craigslist and all kinds. I’ve landed a wedding. I’ve never done it before, day-of-event coordinating for a wedding. That’s when I started my own business. I had no idea what I was doing. I recruited all of my friends for that first wedding. I was like, “I need servers. I need bartenders. I need to make this day happen. I need a caterer.” It was a shit show. That day was incredible. We did that. It was amazing. I started doing that instead. It was a transition. There was a little bit of time in between that. I started doing day-of-event coordinating. I started doing weddings a lot actually. I just jumped in and figured out how to type up contracts and just Googled everything and made it happen. I really loved doing that.
You had an amazing opportunity and you just said yes. You figured out how to do it later. I feel like most people should do that. Don’t worry about how it’s going to happen. Just say yes and the rest will take care of itself.
You’ve got to say yes. There’s that point where you’re just going to stop growing. It’s like working out, if you’re not pushing yourself past the limit, you’re not growing any muscle. The same thing with life, if you’re comfortable, that’s great. You might have a few less wrinkles later or something, I don’t know. At the same time, where are we growing into who we are? I think that ties down to being satisfied. Dissatisfaction is one of the major reasons for depression. If we’re not working towards our potential or figuring out what that is for us, that was for me, I’d rather die than feel like I’m not doing what I can in life. Cramming in experience.
How did you make your way down to Southern California?
I’ve just decided again. It’s the same thing. I’ve been here in San Francisco for a while. I tried to start to see, what am I going to keep doing? I have a heart for adventure. I’m just going to travel across the States. I’m going to do something crazy. I don’t know, maybe I’ll stop in Texas or maybe I’ll keep going. This is a cool thing. I didn’t have a car for two years when I was in San Francisco.
This is my favorite part, because I remember we were hanging out and you were telling me this story. I look outside my window, because you said you went out to California with $700 in your pocket, I was like, “Amena, how do you have a car?” Then you told me this and I was like, “No, fucking way.” This is unreal how this happened.
I had a friend that reached out to me, “I have this woman that she’s got three boys and she’s looking for a baby sitter.” It wasn’t just a baby sitter for a couple of hours. It was one night. Those boys were crazy. I’m just thinking, that’s the last thing I want to do, is to try to take care of three rambunctious boys. I said no at first. Then I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I’m like, “I need to do it. I’m going to tell them I’m going to do it for free.” That’s my punishment for saying no. I’m doing it for free. I’d like to do it for you. I ended up going and that was tough. I learned a lot about myself and young boys at that point. They’re crazy and they love to play. I think it was like five, seven, and eight. It’s super, super hyperactive. They tried to get me. They’re like, “This old girl, she doesn’t know if we do this or that.” It was a crazy night, ended up going back, didn’t think much of it. Then I get a call within the next week from this woman and she’s like, “We’ve been thinking and we want to give you something. Can you meet with us?” I was like, “Okay.” I thought she was going to give me money for babysitting. Sure enough, it’s a car.
At that moment, I’m just crying because I lost my car when I left for San Francisco. My car was totaled in that accident. I had an apartment in Daly City, which is outside of San Francisco. I was biking to the BART station, taking my bike all the way down to the financial district, which is a long ride. Walking up my bike, walking a 15-minute walk up to my job, and then doing that again on the way home. It was just a lot. At that time, I’ve been putting it out there for a car, probably for a lot longer.
How do you put things out there? I feel there’s a lot of different ways people put things out there and sometimes it happens, sometimes it doesn’t. I think there is a better way to do it than most people think.
It’s simple. It’s ask, believe, receive, for me. It starts with the thought of the need. I was just like, “I really need a car.” I asked for a car, whether that’s a thought or a prayer. Personally, people have to figure out what that means for them. You just believe that it’s coming and put it down. You don’t obsess over it. This is my thing, what is meant for me will never miss me. Put it down. It’s coming, believe it and don’t stop. That’s not to say that there’s not going to be reasons to doubt.
My point was, if someone’s trying to attract money in their life, don’t say, “I want to get out of debt,” because that has a negative stigma attached to it. You want to attract wealth. Say things like, “I expect to be rich. I expect to be wealthy. I’m connected to the universal supply of money.” Not, “I need to pay off my student loans. I need to get out of debt.” Because that just has a negative stigma attached to it where there’s a more positive way of going about it. Would you agree with that?
Yeah. There’s fear and worry attached, which is a big blocker of anything that’s coming your way. The truth is that for each and every one of us, that good is trying to come our way. I really believe that our mindset about things and that fear and that worry can make it miss us. Everything we need is out there. I think it’s also gratitude too. I had a bike at that time and I was bike riding, I’m like, “Thank you for this bike.” Instead of thinking, “I don’t have a car. I’m not able to drive. I’m tired. 6:30 in the morning, I’m having to bike.” There could have been such a mentality of negativity. I did it on purpose. It wasn’t, “This is just how I feel.” I don’t feel like that, but I made myself feel it. It becomes a part of life. Gratitude maybe is the antidote for that fear and that worry that is blocking what we want and what we need. I got a car and that was so cool. There’s a very beautiful pure process to it. It’s really awesome when it happens. You’re just like, “This is bigger than me.”
How did I get to SoCal? I took off on an unended road trip. I didn’t have some stopping points, starting point. I wasn’t like, “I’m just going to drive.” I did set up some places to stop along the way, like Arizona. I knew I was going to stop in San Diego. I knew I was going to stop in LA. I had some family that was along the way, New Mexico. Those were little markers but no big plans. I stopped in LA first. This is cool. This is what I’m talking about. Sometimes the people that you meet don’t happen to come back for their purpose in your life until later. Don’t ever miss a day of meeting someone new when you have that chance because you never know why they came or what they will do in your life.
I remembered in San Francisco, I had worked a vocal audition for some producers that came in. I accepted a side job. I was always picking up work when I could. I remember they lived in LA so I reached out and I was like, “I’m coming through, I’ll be there. We should meet.” Responded back and I ended up meeting with these people. In Huntington Beach is where I met Kevin. I ended up getting offered a job to stay and work for this record label production company. It was everything to do with music. I didn’t expect it but I was open to it happening. I ended up flying home, back to Texas to visit for a month, then left my car in SoCal and started working with them. That was intense. It was amazing. All of a sudden my life is going a hundred miles an hour in doing what I love and really being exposed to the industry. We did a TV show. We did a lot of studio work. I got to work one-on-one as a vocal coach for some of the kids. That was one of my favorite jobs ever.
Was this where you met, I forget the guy, he’s one of the most famous producers. He worked with The Beatles.
Don Grierson. It’s beautiful how these things set themselves up. We ended up working with him. He collaborated with us on quite a few different things, working with artists. He was a hot commodity. It was really cool to be around him and be on a first name basis. He’s the coolest guy, Don Grierson. I love that guy. A lot of traveling, a lot of movement. I’m so thankful for that time. It was incredible, incredible. It really got me to think clearly on the whole music aspect and what the industry is doing with it versus what I’m willing to do and how to keep it authentic for myself. It was crash course 101 on being genuine and being an artist.
Not only are you going through all this at this time but your dad was also fighting something at this time too, right?
Yeah. My dad got diagnosed with cancer, B-Cell Lymphoma. He had cancer in his bones. We found out a little bit later. It was rough for my family. It brought up a lot of, “There’s so much that I want to say to my dad.” I think when we have these things or these times where loved ones close to us might go, it just puts your head in a whole different space. That was really tough. I think that we had met around that time, right?
Yeah. Was your family a little bit in disarray still at this point? Did it bring everybody together?
It’s beautiful how everybody’s all of a sudden ready to talk. It just puts that pressure on things. Like, “If this is the last thing that I have to say.” Within my family, my mom and my dad, they did the best that they could with what they knew and what they had. In that, I love them so much but there was always room for things to go wrong, and they did. Family got divided over the forceful things that my parents did.
I remember you told me four or five of your siblings just left at once. You ran into them at the end of the day.
I was always the kid that kept my mouth shut about everything. I just observed and I didn’t tell. I wasn’t a tattletale. That day, I’m up in this loft and looking down and four of my older siblings were packing up to run away together. I knew, as young as I was, I’m looking down and I just knew that it was what they were supposed to do. That was the freedom that they found. Everyone’s doing so well now.
What did they say to you when they were leaving?
They didn’t know that I was there. I kept quiet. It’s a loft bed so they’re underneath the loft area of the bed and I’m looking down. Tying that into where my family is at now, it’s so beautiful. It’s like this beautiful expression of strong, strong individuals all rising up out of something that was chaos and hurtful and not okay at many points in time. If you look at my siblings, we have the best time together when we get together for Christmas because everyone’s just like, “We stepped up to the plate of life.”
There are ten guitars going around and everybody’s singing.
We wake up singing. It’s cool. Music is a big part. Music is still a huge part. I’m thankful to be able to say that. I’m glad it didn’t go away just because we were forced to do it growing up.
I wanted to tell you what my favorite thing about you is. I don’t know if you know it or not, but you have this amazing gift where you just speak beauty into people. You make people feel like they can do anything. It’s not fake. It’s from the heart. It’s genuine. My uncle gave me a guitar. He passed away when I was in third grade, he gave me his guitar. It was rotting in the corner of my room for thirteen years, however long it was. You came over one day and was like, “Is that a guitar?” I was like, “Yeah, but I can’t play it for anything.” You’re like, “Pick it up.” I just started strumming and you’re like, “You’re so good.” I’m like, “What is this girl talking about? I am awful.” Just that little boost of confidence made me start picking it up again. You showed some things. I’m still awful at it.
You’re a buzz. Are you kidding? Hard on yourself.
Not just the guitar thing, it’s with everything. You were talking to my roommate, Alex Muka, one time and you left, he was like, “She made me feel like I could actually be a writer.” I was like, “What did she say to you?” He’s like, “I don’t really know. She just inspired me to feel like I could actually do this.” Timmy said the same thing. When did you start doing that? Are you conscious of that? You literally have no filter when it comes to just speaking beauty into people, you just say it. Have you always been like that? Because it’s very profound.
No, I don’t think so.
Do you know you do that?
I can say this, I know that I have a huge driving desire daily to pull the greatness out of people. Not in a way that I’m forcing it, but I just feel that people really can do whatever they want. I love seeing that potential, when people are living and walking in it. I think that if I could pinpoint maybe when this started, it would be me coming to a place of rebuilding my life and coming from something that was not ideal, my basis of starting, and turning it into something beautiful and realizing, “I really can teach myself to play the guitar. I really can write a song. I really can get up and change my life. I can change my location. I really can meet cool people.” In that, I think I began to realize that there was more in me. Maybe that’s when it started. For me, it’s really important to not just step up to someone and give them words but come with something authentic and make them feel something. I don’t really care if people remember the words that I say. I probably talk way too much. There’s that thing that you can make someone feel that they don’t forget.
You don’t even have to say it. You almost say it just by looking at somebody. People can feel it more than anything. I think that’s what goes a long way with you, because people feel your presence when you’re having a conversation with you. You radiate it.
Whatever it is that led up to those conversations, it wasn’t something that I just decided one day. It was a lot of time and a lot of protecting my time. Instead of doing what was fun and ideal and going out while everyone’s going to the clubs, I’m sitting at home and I’m like, “What’s going to grow me spiritually? What’s going to grow me writing?” Doing the things that nobody wanted to do, and I think I still do that. As we begin to live in that bigger life, in that bigger mindset, in that positive place in life, it’s not going to keep happening unless you get really protective over that time and over what fuels that kind of mindset. There are a million things that do it for me. I know eating right is a big part, working out is a big part, spending time alone. For me, music and writing. We’ve each got our own thing. But it’s not always the ideal fun thing to be doing. Leading up to having that presence. I think it’s also a sensitivity that I feel when I’m in the presence of someone else. I’m sensitive to their greatness. I like asking the hard questions. Even if I don’t feel it, “What do you love?” We all want to talk to each other and be like, “What do you do for a living? How old are you?”
I hate that question.
I’m not into those questions.
“What do you do?”
What do you do? I don’t know. I hate it when people ask me those questions. I’ve always hated when people are like, “How old are you?” We put these labels on things. I, instead, like to pose the hard questions, like, “What do you love? What are you doing now to do that and to make that your reality?” It’s amazing because I feel like people are very attracted to that question once you get in there. There’s a guy that’s maybe working as a tech engineer, I don’t know, something, and he’s like, “I really love coffee.” It’ll be the opposite of what they’re doing and they’re almost afraid to talk about it because it sounds so silly, but their eyes light up. They’re like, “I’m passionate about this.”
I love when people get animated about that stuff, what they love. You can’t get there by, “What do you do?” It’s just a run-through-the-mill question. “I do this, this.” Then they ask you what you do and then the conversation is pretty much dead after that.
I know, I agree. You did the same for me as well. This is why I’m like, “I’m so meant to have met Kevin.” I’ll always feel that. You know when you meet someone that has a different perspective in life. You’re not living in the pressure of your past or weighed down by your circumstances. You have this unlimited mindset that is like, “I can and I will.” I think that we attracted that in each other. That’s probably a big reason why we met. You also carried that. Maybe we could crack down the similarities of what we believe really works towards that and maybe there’s an answer within that. I think that there’s something similar to be said about you and the way that you give people that feeling of “can do.”
I don’t really believe in coincidences anymore. Think about how much stuff had to happen for us to meet on a Saturday night, 8:00 at Trader Joe’s. I never go to Trader Joe’s on Saturday night ever.
You know what had to happen? I had to get locked out of my car.
You got locked out of your car. There are so many circumstances that need to go right for that to happen, and it did. If you just made one extra turn in your car that day, if you made a right instead of a left, it’s a completely different day. I’m a firm believer that everything is in line. It’s all part of the plan. This is what’s meant to be, and a lot of people fight that. Just accept that you are meant to be where you are supposed to be. Accept it. I think a lot of people’s lives will change if they can just accept the situation they’re in.
It allows you to relax. You can relax through life. People are walking around with so much anxiety and worry and just like, “What am I going to do about this? The money and this. This opportunity and this.” If you actually believe that everything is coming to you, life is going as planned, you are on that path and it’s taking you to where you need to go, everything’s fine, the people will come, you can walk into life and relax about everything, no matter the circumstances.
You can create your own world.
You really can.
You can literally create and attract everything you want in this life. If you don’t believe that, it’s not going to happen for you because it’s a belief system. If you say, “The law of attraction is bullshit.” It’s going to be bullshit for you. You’re not going to attract the right people. But if you have a firm belief that it’s going to happen, then it’s like if you believe you can do something or you can’t do it. If you believe you can do it, you can do it. If you can’t, you can’t.
You’re right, either way. This is the day that I was like, “This guy is on point.” I walk into your space and you have this collage all over the wall of positive affirmation. I remember I was, “Can I take a picture of this?” I think it was the first time I came over and I was like, “I need a picture of this. This is incredible.”
That was my wallpaper.
It was your wallpaper, it was. Your wallpaper was all of these quotes and sayings that made you get into that space of “I can do this. I will do this. I will create the life that I want to live.” What that was for you was you wanted to change the lives of others and heal people through your chiropractic and what you were working for at that time. You’ve done it and you are still. What does a day look like for you inside of that positive life, inside of that law of attraction type 24 hours, practically?
Some days you wake up and you have this overwhelming feeling of just gratitude to be alive. You’re just like, “This is going to be a beautiful day.” I feel like when you start your day just being thankful for the people in your life, what you have, this feeling overcomes you and you just have a better day. I don’t do it every day. But when I do, when I’m conscious like, “Thank you for my mom, my family, my friends and everything.” Be very specific about it. Don’t just do what I just did. “I’m thankful for my friends.” Pick people out. “I’m thankful for my best friend. I’m thankful for my cousin, Tim.” People like that. The more specific you are, the more clarity you have, the more power you have.
It’s funny because I’ll have days where I’m completely in tune with everything and it’s just one good thing after the other. But if I miss my alarm, I wake up rushed, my whole day is completely different. I’m rushing to work. You don’t attract the things you want to happen. If you just relax, take a breath, accept where you are, attract those good things, slow everything down. That was one of the big things for me. I was always in a rush. I couldn’t relax. I couldn’t do anything. Once I started being conscious and just slowing everything down, trying to let the world come to me, not me going after the world, that’s when everything shifted for me.
That’s huge, what you just said. Letting the world come to you. I say this, this is something that has helped me so much. It’s the open hand method. I walk through life like that. I don’t want it to be confused for laziness and not trying. The effort that you put into life is everything. As far as what’s coming and what’s going in your life, walking through life with the open hand, not grabbing on to things and being like, “Don’t leave. This is mine. It’s mine. I can’t let go of it.” Or on the other hand, pushing things away. We all do that. It’s almost in us. It’s this push-and-pull in life. It’s so beautiful. When it comes, let it come, let it stay. If it goes, let it go. It’s all good. Either way, everything is working together for good.
One little thing made a huge difference in my life. People ask to do things for you like, “Can I get you a cup of coffee? Can I get you water? Can I come over and do this? Can I help you with something around the house?” I used to always say no. “I’m good. I got it. I’ll do it myself. I want to do this. I’m going to do it right.” I read something one day. When you do that, when you push people away like that, you’re shutting down the universal flow of giving and receiving. That’s that person’s opportunity to give you something, to give. When you do that, you shut that off. You shut off your receiving and you shut off your giving and the cycle stops.
If I go into somebody’s house and they say, “Can I offer you a plate of food?” I always say yes. A drink? I always say yes. Because unconsciously, when you say no, you’re shutting that person down. Who knows what you’re making them feel, but that was their opportunity to give you something and you just shut them down. Don’t say yes to everything, but be conscious. Just say yes to more. If it’s little things like that, that’s only going to help you. It’s the little things you do right that make a big difference. I feel like that’s a huge part of the giving and receiving, just letting other people help you. There are a lot of people who want to do everything by themselves but if you let people help you, it brings more to you.
You’re not pushing things away. You’re receiving. I love how you say the little things, that they matter so much. How you do anything is how you do everything. As you’re talking about just getting into that space of being thankful, sometimes it’s forced, Kevin. Sometimes you don’t feel it. I would say this for me, I don’t always feel I’m overflowing with this passion and joy and happiness for life. I don’t walk on clouds every day, but I would make myself smile because there’s always something to be grateful for. It’s the most cliché thing to say, but it works. Having a bad day, we all have those. You can’t help it. It’s going to come.
Do you feel a cycle? You’ll have the best couple of days ever and then you’re just in a shit mood the next day and it’s nothing you did? I feel like there’s a cycle to it and you’ve got to realize your own cycle because it’s not always going to be up. Even a positive mindset, you’re still going to have a shit day. You just have to be conscious of it.
Everyone’s doing it. No matter who we are, the greatest of the great, the lowest of the low, whatever. I think you need the good and the bad together. I couldn’t sit here on this podcast and talk about anything happy if I didn’t go through years of tough, tough stuff. I think it’s really important to stay humble. Keep the ego down. That’s one thing that it does. We don’t know how beautiful things are, we don’t know love without heartbreak. We aren’t appreciating those beautiful flowing moments. I think that being present even with the bad days, being present and not getting attached to identifying with this bad day and being like, “This bad day is my bad day.” It’s just being present, staying consistently joyous.
Not complaining about my situation at all, it’s just when my dad pretty much died right in front of me when I was sixteen, I had a rough go for an awful two years. When I was nineteen, finally snapped out of it, it was one of the best years of my life because I was finally happy again. I was having a good time. I wouldn’t have been able to feel that happiness if it wasn’t for the extreme lows. Then I got the concussion and it sent me another four or five years down the gutter. That time period from sixteen to twenty-four was very, very rough. There were a lot of times when I didn’t want to live anymore. When I finally got out of it, I can’t explain to you, but I had such a joy for living. Just waking up without a headache or blurred vision or brain fog. Just waking up, being healthy, was the greatest gift I’ve ever gotten in my entire life. I do wake up some days, “This is the most beautiful day ever.” I would’ve never gotten that unless all that shit didn’t happen. It’s a blessing. It really was all a blessing. You can’t see it in the shit storm but it all works out. It definitely all works out.
When you were in that bad place, do you feel like you were believing for better days? Do you feel like there was a part of you that was asking, believing, receiving for better days and setting yourself into that?
I wasn’t believing in better days. I was hoping for better days. There’s a huge difference. I was literally on my knees every night, “Please, God, let tomorrow be a good day.” Every single day, nothing, nothing, nothing. I went into this in my first episode. I woke up one day and I was like, “This is it. I’m going to fucking kill myself.” I rolled out of bed, I was like, “Either kill me or get me better because I cannot take this shit anymore. I can’t take the pain.” I was at a Catholic university and I went to a priest because I had no idea what else to do. I was hoping he would give me a blessing of some sort and I’d be fine. I walked into this priest’s office. He had a pack of cigarettes on the desk, just a very unconventional priest. I’m telling him my story and midway through the story he’s like, “Kevin, you can do all the hoping, praying, and wishing in the world but if you don’t get out there and do something about your situation, you’re never going to get better.” I’m just like, “Holy shit.”
Hoping is one of the worst things ever because there’s no action. It’s a good thing. It’s not bad. But hoping alone will not get you better. You have to believe it. You have to take some faith and you have to take action. You’re still going to run into a lot of speed bumps in that process but you just got to keep going. If you keep knocking on doors, one is going to open eventually. I feel like people get very discouraged in the timing because it doesn’t happen according to them. It happens according to when it’s supposed to happen.
We can all look back and see if that would have happened on a different time of my life, everybody could say it, if it was a different time then I wouldn’t have grabbed a hold of it and I wouldn’t have got it or I wouldn’t have made that move. Timing is a huge part. What you said right there about you were just hoping. That has been such a big part of turmoil for me because I had to break out of this religious belief. It’s faith and everything’s happening because it’s going to come to you. It’s going to land you. God is going to drop some baby stork of love and life and happiness on your doorstep, just keep praying.
It’s this mentality that I was just so conflicted about. I’m like, “I am doing everything that I know how to do internally to bring about this thing that I need, this happiness, this joy, this life, this non-depression about things I’m doing.” What you said, I’m jumping up and down inside me because that’s it. That’s it exactly. That’s a huge breakthrough for a lot of people, is realizing you can hope, you can pray, you can do whatever you’re doing. But on the outside, you really got to put it into action. It’s not just words. That’s a huge part of getting out there. For me, what I started doing is doing the complete, extreme opposite of how I was feeling on the inside or what the problem was. If it was lethargy, I’ll just take it down to something very simple, extreme opposite. I would make myself do one of the hardest workouts and fighting it with the opposite. We fight the negativity, the bad thoughts with something extremely positive, but it’s an action. We can’t miss that action. That’s so cool, I love that.
Amena, what are you doing now? What are you going back to school for?
Personal development. I’m really good at moving and throwing myself into uncomfortable places. It’s almost become normal for me, just keeping the momentum going. It’s a little bit harder to stay in one place. I think that mundane part really teaches a good structure. It’s stretching me in a huge way to be doing something, sometimes the same thing every day. I love it when life is diverse and unexpected. But when it’s planned and it’s routine, it’s a little bit more difficult. But I think that both are really important. Right now, that’s something that I would say is important for me. I really believe in education. I believe in learning. That’s what I want to do with my education eventually, be able to take people into their passions and they can go into school with really knowing, “This is what I want to do with my life. This is what I love.”
There’s nothing taught in any elementary school, middle school. I had a leadership course in high school but it was out of the book. You can’t teach kids in that way, especially that stuff. They have to feel it.
You’ve got to feel it and you’ve got to do it. You’ve got to try it. You have to be around people that are doing it and actually get the real of it. It was insane. I think it was in San Francisco, I did take some college courses while I was there and music classes. We had to do some intro college thing. We didn’t look at what we love to do. We did a survey in class of the kind of lifestyle that we wanted to live. Do we want to live in a condo? Geographically, where? We looked at what our expenses would be for our ideal life and then looked at jobs and their salaries. From there, we were told, “You should get this degree because it supports the lifestyle that you want to live,” which I believe is so backwards, so wrong. It’s a recipe for disaster. I’m really passionate. I’m getting fired up about it. If people were passionate about what they did, whether you love to do coffee or some people really love working on the mill, I don’t know. That passion is what we need to make life beautiful. Life is beautiful. Everybody’s got it.
I feel really sensitive to that angst that people have over being unhappy, going to school, getting tons of dollars in debt, and then working at a restaurant with a degree and being like, “I can’t do this. Why did I do it?” That’s not setting yourself up for the best life possible in doing that. That’s something that I know I’m made to do. I want to pull out the greatness in others and I also want to give people a platform to discover that greatness, discover those passions, discover the things that make your life.
A lot of people ask, “How do I find that passion? How do I find that life purpose? What am I supposed to do?” I don’t think there’s a great answer for that directly, but you’re not going to get there if you’re comfortable. You’re 1000% not going to find that if you’re comfortable. A lot of people find it when they’re rock-bottom, when there’s nowhere else to go but up. That’s when you really discover who you are, what you’re meant for, because you’re not going to get it if you’re just going through the motions. It’s almost impossible.
Where do you go from that? I agree. It does come in those times where there’s no plan A, there’s no plan B. You’re like, “What am I going to do?” I think you hear a lot of stories of people that have been really successful, they were in a place where they were questioning everything in life. They had no idea why they’re here. Coming from a practical place, you can’t really just jump into rock-bottom. You can’t just be like, “If that’s what it takes for me to figure out what I’m here for, then let me just jump into rock-bottom.” Practically, what does it mean to you to be uncomfortable and to test your strengths? It means to not be afraid to fail, to not be afraid to be embarrassed, to be in a crowd, to put yourself around people. No more “big fish, little pond” thing.
Get out there and be the least of many. Find a way to be the least. Be the lowest. Be the dumbest person in the room. Find those places. Nobody wants to do that. That’s being uncomfortable. So many times where I stood in places, I’m still doing it, I’m going to do it again today when we finish. That’s uncomfortable and those kinds of feelings that feel really bad, they bring you to a rock-bottom place within you and you’re like, “Who am I?” I think that there are a lot of ingredients to the recipe for passion, but I think that that uncomfortable factor is a huge, huge one.
Or just take a step back for a week. Throw yourself off the track for a week. If you’re doing the same routine every day, if you remove yourself from that for a week, just sit by yourself, analyze all your thoughts because your mind is probably going, going, and going, it’s not turning off. When you sit back down by yourself, analyze those thoughts, calm that voice down a little bit, then I think you start to put things in perspective. You definitely don’t have to be at rock-bottom, but remove yourself. I think travel is a great way to get you there too.
It’s my favorite way. I have a friend that I talked to recently. He just booked a one-way ticket to Asia, Thailand. He’s been in finance for a long time, been doing the corporate world, ready to turn his life around, and he’s taking active steps to do it. He booked a ticket one way, going to figure it out. That’s going to grow him so much. I’m super stoked for that. I am huge on that, big on that. I’m trying to do the opposite part of it and I’m itching to travel. I just want to go everywhere. I appreciate that about you. You always bring in that passionate part to life. You’re super passionate about life. You found that. I think you found it because of your struggle. I think that the most important thing, there are a couple; gratitude and also just making a decision to experience life, not just live through it.
Get out of your comfort zone.
Get out and listen to Kevin’s podcast every week, two times a week. I’m really grateful for you and super thankful.
Thank you for coming on. I have a great time talking to you every time. Thank you so much, Amena for coming on. Where are you at with the music right now?
I’m actually going into the studio after we get off this call. I called a producer. Recently, I’m ready to do a music video for one of my songs and someone had promised a music video in the past. I worked with that production company and they’re like, “Anytime you’re ready.” I called, “If the offer still stands, I’m ready.” He was like, “We’re actually flying in to Austin in a couple of days.” That’s the thing, you just have to say yes and you have to be ready. Say yes, be ready, and keep showing up. That’s what I’m going to do today. We’ll see what happens. I have a lot to express as far as music. Any musician would understand. When you don’t do it often, you feel it. It’s in there. You’ve got to let it out. I’m ready to do that.
I see a bright future for you. Where can people listen to your music?
It is SoundCloud.com/undocument/she-breathes. The song is called She Breathes. There’s more to come, so stay tuned.
Thank you so much, Amena. That was amazing.
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