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Oh man, Libby is super cool. We met over a cup of coffee one early morning at my favorite cafe, and after learning more about what was next for her, I asked her to let us in on all of it. Read on.

Hi! Who are you?! What do you do?
Hello! I’m Libby, an aspiring farmer/agricultural educator. I’m currently (newly) transitioning from a career in tech to a career more aligned with my food and agriculture dreams. My day to day now consists of getting to work on the operations team at a local food hub, as well as at a sustainability-minded restaurant.

Work/Life/Passion Balance, what’s your method?
It’s funny you ask me this, because I’m in the thick of the process of figuring this out. So far, I’ve realized that no matter how much you love your job, you still need ample life outside of work. I’m slowly learning the best ways to spend my free time, particularly how to fulfill what I need that day or that moment.

To unwind, I read, talk on the phone with my parents, brothers, and friends, jog, give myself a morning to cook a nice and big breakfast, do some personalized stretching/yoga/meditation combo, or find and consume the nearest scoop of ice cream, or peanut butter cookie. To really clear my head and/or perk myself up, I listen to music and walk around my favorite neighborhoods in the city to people and place watch. I also find I’m never in a better mood than when I’m in a third space either on my computer or writing and also kind of eavesdropping on what’s going on around me. It sounds goofy but it gives me faith in humanity and makes me love people. I’ll also occasionally strike up a conversation with a stranger, which really gets me going. Talking to someone who knows nothing about you can be very freeing, and it’s also telling what you choose to present about yourself.

When you were a kid, what did you think you were going to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be a grocery store cash register attendant, because I loved the “beep” noise the bar code scanner made, how knowledgable the attendants looked punching buttons on the register, and thought it was cool that attendants get to see what kinds of food people buy for themselves. I also thought they got to keep all of the money in the register.

Now that you’re pretty much a grown-up, what do you think you’re going to be when you grow up?
TBD! But if I had to decide the job I’d have for the rest of my life tomorrow, I’d be a farmer within a coop. Goats, chickens, veggie/fruit/herb fields, and a greenhouse, with educational programming.

Thanks for chatting! Where can folks find more info about you?
Thank you! People can find me on instagram (ebelyon) or email me at ebelyon@gmail.com

We hear it in yoga all the time, to set an intention for your practice. And if you haven’t done yoga before, consider yourself warned! However, setting an intention for your practice, can apply to your day, too. Some folks try doing these each morning when they wake up, but for this week you could try just setting an intention for your day. Something that can help set it is writing it down. Maybe you want to focus on your breath today, or maybe you want to simply focus on being today. By writing it down (or saying it to yourself), you’re giving yourself a bit of a guiding light to focus your energy and efforts for the day. It’s a nice way to keep perspective.

Enjoy setting an intention!

Hi! Who are you?! What do you do?
Hi! I am Betina and I do a couple things for work. Right now, my main role is that I am a Director at a new social sharing platform for sharing tastes and opinions called Tastetracker. I am focused on marketing, building community, and finding interesting tastemakers to help create great content for the app. I also recently became a certified yoga teacher, and am working on developing that as a part of my career. I am really interested in the energetic ties between yoga, positive psychology, and creativity. My friend Cobi and I are working on something around those interests called Om Atha.

Work/Life/Passion Balance, what’s your method?
I think that balance you’re referring to is the main reason I do yoga. And it’s the reason I block out “CHILL” nights on my calendar (I have this sickness whereby I want to do everything so I overbook myself and forget to have “me” time – so I have to schedule it). I didn’t pay much attention to balance until I found that after a few years of living in New York, I was totally off balance and disconnected from so many things I really loved for my whole life before. I realized that I needed time and space to re-establish that connection, and get to know myself again. Safeguarding that energetic balance is similar to going to the gym, or eating healthy. It’s a practice, and it takes work and commitment, and if I don’t do it, I feel like crap, and not like my best, most happy self.

Actually, exploring methods for finding balance is one of my passions. It’s why I study yoga, and it’s why I developed an interest in positive psychology. It’s also why I am not-so-secretly obsessed with personality tests, and even more esoteric things like astrology. It’s ALSO why I love art. Throughout history, humans have come up with so many fascinating and diverse methods for developing self-knowledge, self-expression, and self-care – I am fascinated by that!

My method is that I make it a daily practice to stay connected to my core values, and to trust my body in determining when specific things are needed. The general recipe is a cocktail of socializing (friends, family, parties), writing, reading (and sharing what I read), stretching, sweating, making things with my hands (collages, food), and satisfying my inexhaustible curiosity by trying/seeing/hearing/experiencing new things. I don’t like to be too regimented, but I know I am happy when I have a pretty good balance of those things each week.

When you were a kid, what did you think you were going to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be a fashion designer, and I wanted to join the circus. I feel like I am a little closer to the second option.

Now that you’re pretty much a grown-up, what do you think you’re going to be when you grow up?
Oh god. I think about this all the time. Rikki, you know this. I have so many ideas for this, so maybe the next thing I should work on is committing, so that I can pick one (or two) to focus on.

I read this awesome quote today by James Victoire: “The things that made you weird as a kid—make you great today.” I liked it so much, I tweeted it. So does that mean I should be a fashion designer and join the circus? Sometimes I think, yeah, in a way.

So with that in mind, I’d like to keep teaching yoga when I grow up. I’ve been practicing since I was 15, and I love sharing what I’ve learned. I also would like design to be a more significant part of my daily life. Drawing and collage used to be my favorite pastimes as a kid.

Some other ideas: writer (specifically, I want to be Martha Medeiros – she is amazing), costume designer (for movies), accessories designer (jewelry and/or shoes), art therapist, digital nomad (hehe).

Can’t wait to see what happens! NEITHER CAN I!

Thanks for chatting! Where can folks find more info about you?
Tweet @betinavb
Gram @betinavb
www.betinabethlem.com
www.tastetracker.com (sign up for our private beta!!)
betina.bethlem@gmail.com

In the second installment of people crushing life, allow me to introduce you to an incredible human being and all-around stand-up guy. Jesse Morris is the President/Partner of Spartan & Spartan Ventures. They are a digital agency/incubator that builds technology products/platforms for clients but also launches their own companies. ReadyCart is the most successful wholly-incubated product they’ve launched and they’re excited about the progress they’ve made with it. They also invest in startups by way of discounting their development rates for equity. Jesse oversees Business Development, Marketing and Strategy for the organization. Read on to learn about his work/life/passion balance.

Jesse on the topic of “Balance”:
Balance is one word that I usually don’t use to describe myself. I am extremely passionate and pour my whole self into whatever I’m truly committed to. This personality trait often tips the scale of being “balanced”. At this point in my life, I am committed to Spartan and creating wealth for myself through this vehicle. When the company is performing well, I feel good and have time for “balanced” activities. When the company is cash strapped or facing a serious issue, I usually feel it and dedicate the vast majority of my physical/mental/emotional time trying to solve the problem.

On people caring about 3 things:
I am fueled by meeting/connecting people and listening to their stories. I’d like to think I’m pretty self aware. I have been given the “gift of gab” and have had success helping others through bringing new people into their lives, whether it is personal or professional. I realize that you can break most people down into caring about 3 things; health, wealth, and family. If you can help someone in any or all of those three areas, you are gold. People make professional business decisions for personal reasons. I live to connect with people on a personal level and help them achieve what they are reaching for.

How NYC can affect your approach to work and life:
Back to the balance question, and the commitment thing. I recently spent 4 months living in Santa Monica, working remotely. I spend most of the year living in NYC and travel quite a bit to DC (where my business partner lives) and to Chattanooga, TN (where Spartan HQ is). The time spent in Santa Monica was amazing. It was the most balanced I have felt in years. I was waking up early to work east coast hours, but I was completely done working by 3-4pm each day. I went to yoga 4 days a week and ran, played volleyball and paddle boarded on a weekly basis. I hosted dinner parties at my apartment and made a lot of new friends. Through this experience, I realized I am much more of a daytime person as opposed to a nighttime person. I really enjoy spending time outside and running around, playing sports, expending physical energy. At night, I love a dinner party and a casual glass of wine, going to bed somewhat early and getting a good nights sleep. Living in NYC, there is so much to do after midnight, but it never really appealed to me. I think this Santa Monica trip allowed me to settle into some natural processes that is harder to do in NYC. In NYC, if I don’t go out, I work. Sometimes ‘til past 11pm.

What Jesse does in his free time:
I really enjoy cooking, playing sports, watching a show/movie, meeting new people, spending time in public (learning, people watching).

Check back next week to learn how Jesse is just like Beyonce, some causes that are important to him and his plans for the future!
Want to learn more about Jesse in the meantime? Check out these links!
Twitter: jessehmorris4
Instagram: jessehmorris
Business: www.joinspartan.com
Email: jesse@joinspartan.com
Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jessemorris2014

When we think of habits, sometimes we also think of hobbies. Any hobby that you love you can turn it into a habit with the right kind of time, effort and interest. Not every hobby has to become a habit, but, there’s plenty of information that explains hobbies can really benefit you – and not just those who have retired. Although, my landlords I’m pretty sure spend all day every day hobbying – just this week I saw them preparing to go supervise free kayaking!

So, here are some benefits of developing a hobby. And, at the end I list some hobbies you can consider if you’re saying to yourself “I don’t even know what I’d hobby in!”

  • Rest Having a hobby gives you a break from your daily life. It can help keep burnout at bay, and gives you some you-time. Just think, you can’t be answering email if you’re in the middle of that dance class, so, they’ll just have to wait, and you get 45 minutes of you-time!
  • Health – Hobby crafting can lead to lower blood pressure, a better immune system and lower stress. Who knew?!
  • Challenge – Some hobbies can be simply to deliver a break, but others may also deliver a fun self-created challenge that lets you build up some skills – ones that can help you at work, or skills that are just for fun! Either way it helps you get in that “flow” area!
  • Social – If your hobby is practiced in a group: a book club, yoga class or any type of congregating, it can be an incredible social outlet to make some new friends who have similar interests to you.

Some hobbies to consider:
Yoga, pilates, meditation, knitting, reading, gardening, dance class, graphic design, pottery, painting, bowling, soccer, swimming, coding, hiking, climbing, investing, book club, movie club, drawing, biking, cooking, baking, card games, board games, writing, crosswords, puzzles, walking, running, jogging, learning a new language, learning an instrument, or, like my landlords, kayaking! There are lots of hobbies out there to try – high and low impact. Enjoy hobbying!

Credits:
http://www.positivelypresent.com/2013/06/benefits-of-having-a-hobby.html
http://stress.about.com/od/funandgames/a/The-Importance-Of-Hobbies-For-Stress-Relief.htm
http://www.linkedsenior.com/2012/10/6-health-benefits-of-having-hobbies-leisure-activities.html

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