Our Hierarchy of Needs

Our Hierarchy of Needs
Living According Abraham Maslow

A very important step in our own personal evolution from the person we were programmed to be to the person we desire to be is to figure out just how did we get here?

At some point in our life we left childhood behind and charged into adulthood down a path that was laid out for us whether we realized it or not. Once we were out on our own, free from the control and safety of our parents, we realized that life was a little more difficult than we were led to believe.

Our path was littered with hurdles and roadblocks, each of which being a detour off the path that was to lead us to the good life and the happiness that it would provide for us. And while these hurdles seemed like obstacles thrown in our way by external forces, upon reflection, we need to realize that they were actually choices and decisions that we made that seemed to make sense to our past self, but now our present self has to deal with the consequences.

The irony is that most of those choices we made probably resulted in a “successful” outcome and not the dreaded failure that we were afraid of. But after some time, after getting what we wanted, we realized that that didn’t lead to the long term result that we anticipated. The problem wasn’t that we were not getting what we wanted, we were getting what we thought we wanted, what we were conditioned to want, but we were not getting what we needed. Actually, we were satisfying needs, they just weren’t the ones that we thought they were.

Without realizing it, we were on the treadmill!

“Man is a perpetually wanting animal”

The Adventure Life

The Adventure Life
Getting Out There

Nature is a wondrous thing and getting out in it is what we were hard-wired for many eons ago. Experiencing the colors, textures and scents elicit feelings and emotions in us that are in-explainable, unless we realize that they have a meaning that goes beyond just beauty. For our distant ancestors living on the Savanna, the color green meant life, as well as the color of flowers, and even more so, the sound of running water.

There was a time when living the adventure life was just known as living, but it was a way of life that we learned to exploit and master. And while we may have evolved beyond the point of relying on nature for our mere subsistence, and although we have exerted a great deal of control over it, nature still has the power to affect us in profound ways. All we have to do is let it.

Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail. - Ralph Waldo Emerson

While the adventure life is out there waiting for us, it's the adventurer within us that has to take that first step. By taking a long, deep, and honest look inside ourselves, we can figure out what has been holding us back and keeping us from getting out there. That is when we can start becoming that adventurer inside us striving to get out.

Potential Peak Performance and Aging

Potential Peak Performance and Aging
Reaching New Highs

We all have within us a peak performance potential, represented as the highest level of physical performance we could ever hope to achieve. This is the level that professional athletes perform at. It's the level of performance that elite athletes approach on their best days. It is the pinnacle that separates them from the rest of us.

It can be argued that they were born with a potential that is higher than ours and then they put in the work that it takes to perform at that level. But I would argue that, while our peak performance potential was never what their's was and never will be, it is still something that we possess. And while we could never hope to reach an elite's peak performance potential, we could reach ours. But most of us have never come close because we have never even tried.

We have been operating at a level that might be half or even a third of what we were capable of, but believe it or not, that’s good news. Because as we progress down the path of life, and we start to feel like we are slowing down, getting weaker, and maybe not able to do the things we used to do, we can feel reassured that we are still operating well below our potential. And if this is true, and it is, then we are not stuck at the performance level we are currently at. We still have the ability to make physiological improvements that can bring our level of physical performance closer to our Potential Peak Performance.

The Four Agreements

The Four Agreements
By Don Miguel Ruiz


If there is one book that can help us to understand why we are the way we are and get us started making profound changes to the path we are currently on, The Four Agreements by Miguel Ruiz is the one. There are so many hurdles on our path to living a fulfilling life that it is understandable that we would choose to take the path of least resistance, the path that is already laid out for us. When we deviate too far from society’s path we start to experience all kinds of negative emotions from within us as well as scorn and judgement from without.

Creating our own path in life could require a complete mental, emotional, and even physical overhaul, and that can feel damn near impossible. So we make the best of the hand we were dealt. We set out to build our future with the only instructions and tools we have available. But Ruiz beautifully points out that we do not have to follow the instructions given to us and we are not limited to the tools society had provided us. We have within us the ability to develop a new set of plans and create a custom set of tools needed to build our own personal life path.

At the core of this rebuilding project is our character.