Category Archives: 2012

People Google the darndest things: Why don’t Jamaicans name their pets?

Okay. When I came across this one while checking the tracker stats for my blog, I felt it was my civic and cultural duty to stop working on my latest project and offer my perspective, analysis and actual life experience as it relates to this oft-misunderstood aspect of Jamaican life.

The internet seeker (from the UK) asks, “Why don’t Jamaicans name their pets?”

Now, you might think, based on my previous response to “Why don’t Jamaican’s like frogs?”, that we Jamaicans, as a people, have an utter disregard, disrespect, and disdain for forms of life we perceive as beneath us–both animal as well as certain humans.

You would be forgiven for extrapolating that we Jamaicans would see it as the height of folly and foolery to confer a humanizing name to animals we consider as merely security investments (intruder-barking dogs), housekeeping implements (rodent-catching cats), and household decorations (beautifying fish).

Ahhh, but you would be mistaken. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, particularly when it comes to dogs, we have not one, mind you, but SEVERAL names for these household purch–, I mean, um, pets. Let me give a few examples.

Had you the honor and privilege of actually residing with a Jamaican family on the island of Jamaica, you would, at any given moment, hear the head of the household confer one or more of the following terms of endearment on the dog(s) of the house:

“Dutty Mongrel!”–as in, “get dat dutty mongrel offa mi settee!” (Actually, this name would rarely be used in this context as all Jamaican dogs know–by training and instinct–the boundaries and limits of their cohabitation agreements with Jamaicans. Rare is the dog, indeed, that would make it far enough inside the house to actually end up on the settee. Rarer still would be the dog who survived such a transgression.

“Tiefin’ Ginal!”–as in, “Dat tiefin ginal wait til mi tun mi back and grab di piece a meat offa di table!”. [See “dutty mongrel” for information on transgressions of the human/dog domicile boundary.]

“Di Dog Dem!”— as in, “Lawd gad, mi couldn’ sleep, di dog dem just a bark all night!” As mentioned in another post, “di dog dem” is the pluralized form of dog. (“Dem” can also be used to pluralize just about anything living. eg. The cat dem, the people dem, etc.)

“Lazy Brute”–As in “You lazy brute, go look wuk!” (go look (for) work) This was a favorite term my grandfather would use whenever he would exit the house to find “di dog dem” sleeping on the steps or staring expectantly into his face or hands for any signs of food.

“Mangy Ras”–as in, “Listen mi. If you no keep dat likkle mangy ras dog offa mi grass, me an’ you a go war today!” Translation: “Please curb your dog, or I’ll be very upset.”

So, you see, unlike you Brits and Americans, we Jamaicans do not limit ourselves to expressing our affection for our dogs and household pets to merely one name. We believe that a dog’s name should be malleable! Why name a dog once, when you can give your pet the true gift of love with a name that changes to match the mood of the moment!

Glad I could help clear this up!

Ode to a friend: Ruth Tighe is virtually always on my mind…

There are 301 emails in my outbox to Ruth Tighe (There would be more, but I changed computers in 2010).

As I spent some time this morning going over all those emails, I’m reminded of Ruth’s many acts of kindness as well as countless virtual conversations we shared that have endeared her to my memory. I’d like to share a few snippets of those memories with you.

From the day we first met at a Beautify CNMI meeting a few months after I arrived on Saipan in 2006, she’s been a consistent supporter of my writings, blogs, books and projects and has always gone out of her way to keep me informed. In her last email to me on October 5, 2012, as she typically did, she forwarded me a copy of something she thought I would be interested in. This time it was Congressman Gregorio Kilili” Sablan’s newsletter that I was unaware existed, and to which I am now a subscriber.

My fellow Saipan resident, Ruth, was one of the panel of volunteer (read: drafted) experts (of a grand total of about 3) for the website, and answered email questions on a wide range of topics from where to find honey on Saipan, to CNMI marriage law, to how to deal with mosquitoes! (Her thoughts on island life are featured and immortalized in the book spawned by the site, Saipan Living.) Here’s what one couple wrote back to me after I assigned Ruth the task of answering their questions about starting a business on Saipan:

Thanks for your referral of Ruth – very knowledgeable, articulate and responsive to our questions. She is certainly an adjunct Chamber of Commerce asset.”

My friend, Ruth, shared books on a wide range of topics she thought I’d be interested in (actual physical copies as well as links on the internet).

My number one fan, Ruth, offered feedback to my weekly column in the Saipan Tribune, and graciously mentioned my projects in her On My Mind column. Those mentions were a welcome validation and appreciation of my efforts–though she didn’t know how just how eloquent, well-crafted, and well-received they were. I know because here’s what she once wrote as a p.s. after praising one of my books on Saipan.

RUTH: p.s. As you may notice, I am oddly inarticulate when it comes to praising anyone, anything. It all comes out so stilted. But then, I’ve had trouble with that ever since my kids, as kindergartners, brought home their crudely drawn art efforts………….and I’ve not yet gotten any better…………….I guess one could say I’ve never learned the art of flattery? Anyhow. I plan to mention it in my column……….–ruth

My blog follower, Ruth, was the most frequent commenter on my Jamaican in China adventure, following my blog posts from the beginning, even offering her home for me to crash when it seemed I might be homeless when my departure from Saipan to China might have been postponed after already giving up my apartment.

Then, once I actually ended up in China, Ruth continued to be a recurring, behind-the-scenes character: While in China, through a series of random encounters and after an invite I almost turned down, I met an American fellow in a club in Beijing. The exchange went something like this:

WALT: “So, have you ever heard about Saipan?”
STRANGER: “Yes, actually. I know someone who lives there.”
WALT:“Really!? Who?”
STRANGER: She’s family, but she doesn’t have the same last name. My father’s brother is married to her sister. The name slips me right now, but she’s been there a long time. She’s into politics. Wait, it’s coming to me….R-ru–“
WALT/STRANGER: [in unison] “Ruth Tighe!”

So, turns out that in the heart of China, in a city of 20 million people, at a smoke-filled event I had all intentions of missing that night, I’m introduced by a woman I only spoke to for the first time that afternoon, to a man she only met two days before, who, it turns out is related to my number one blog fan on the island Saipan where I’ve spent the last several years! That stranger, Ben Partan, is now my friend, and we keep in touch regularly!

As she became more and more of a follower and commenter on my blog, I would find myself composing and customizing the format of my emails with her in mind, just so she could have a hassle-free existence reading them. (She once described herself as a “luddite,” and from the way she described it, she must have been using a 286 Computer circa 1980s that always seemed to react weirdly to my emails, and just couldn’t seem to handle the image attachments. Nevertheless, she found the necessary ways and means to email me regularly, order books, vote for my blog for blog of the year!)

My fondest memories of Ruth involve our exchanges over what I imagine constitutes our mutual respect for and love affair with the English language. After reading one my articles or blog posts, Ruth might send me an email that would begin something like this:

RUTH: …being a teacher of English myself at one time, I struggled to parse your first sentence.
Pray tell, what is the subject of the verb “has”?

Thus would commence a nuanced back-and-forth debate that only language purists would appreciate wherein we would advocate on behalf of this or that grammatical case and convention, rule or precedent, and through which one of us would invariably introduce the other to a word hitherto not in his or her vocabulary (eg. She introduced me to “nonce.” I introduced her to “epicene.” Look ’em up!)

Ruth was my “reality check” for how my writings were being perceived by “regular humans” and offered her insights and interpretations.

We would often share and compare ideas on random topics in life and living. In one exchange back in 2010, Ruth and I discussed the purpose of the news media and the individual’s role in social change:

WALT: People fault the rich for not doing more for this or that cause. They fault their neighbor for not joining in the struggle against this or that injustice. While it’s true that the world would benefit if more people took up the mantle for a given cause, one of the things I think activists often overlook is that not everyone is called to the activist “life theme.”

RUTH: In thinking about this, I could agree that not everyone is called to be a leader. But not called to do good, to right wrongs, to help others, to try improve life on earth for all its living creatures – and plants/trees? I would agree that many don’t accept or recognize that “responsibility,” if you will, but I have trouble accepting that they don’t have that responsibility….”

Those of us who knew her will recognize that as an apt description of how she conducted life.

In September of this year, I relaunched the site with the new banner “We STILL Love Saipan!” and sent Ruth an email requesting an updated description of why she, too, “still” loved Saipan. She replied:

RUTH: Nice idea, and I’d love to participate, but at the moment, I am barely functioning – I’ve hit a down phase in my health – they call it an “exacerbation” – and I have no energy, have a hard time catching my breath, and cannot think all that deeply, clearly. You’ll note, I’m not putting out my column……..
So my contribution will have to wait til I feel stronger again…………


Ruth didn’t get around to submitting her contribution. However, she did compose one testimonial for me a few months prior especially for Saipan Living:

RUTH: For someone who grew up in land-locked territory, the closeness to the sea is, I think, what attracts me the most – an attraction that has not worn off after 28 years of living on Saipan. The ocean in all its moods and colors, reflecting the clouds above, and the clouds themselves, offer an ever-changing panoply of color, images, beauty and is visible from nearly everywhere on island.

It’s green year-round, with plumeria, or hibiscus, or bougainvillea always in bloom. It’s warm, and sometimes rainy – but often that brings rainbows.
It’s a small island, made up of small, close communities in each village, and friendly people.

Despite its surface appearance as being just like southern California or Florida, it has its own culture, its own idiosyncrasies – and in order to survive and get along, it is necessary to understand, accept and embrace the differences. Living can be as cheap or as expensive as you want it to be – it depends on a person’s life style, and his or her willingness to try new things, to adapt to the local setting.

Paradise has its drawbacks: occasional typhoons, termites, ineradicable ants. But that goes with the territory.

Politically, it is no different than the mainland U.S. – here, though, it’s on a smaller scale, and “in your face” – the corrupt politicians are not in the distant capital, but are your friends and neighbors. Different, fascinating, ever-changing….[end excerpt]

Because of this ever-changing, virtual world we live in, and this nomadic life I’ve chosen, I’ve actually only had about 5 physical face-to-face meetings, one ear-to-ear phone call, and taken just a single photograph with my friend Ruth Tighe since I first met her in 2006. However, I consider her an ally, my biggest supporter, and I feel so very fortunate that this one person on a little 5 x 13-mile island in the middle of the Pacific, whom I would never have known otherwise, emerged from anonymity and into my life. It has made all the difference in the world.

Thanks, Ruth. Sorry I wasn’t on island to see you off, but I’m sure I speak for many on Saipan when I say….You’ll always be on my mind!

Walt F.J. Goodridge
Honored Friend of Ruth Tighe

p.s. With all the references to my books and sites and blogs and columns, I’ve realized that it’s challenging to write about all the ways a person affects your life without appearing to speak inordinately about the details of that life. I think Ruth and I shared the similar purpose of sharing information with others through the written word. In my case, that purpose manifests in the books and sites and blogs and columns I’ve created. Ruth’s impact on my life, therefore, is most evident in the ways in which she supported me in these and in the fulfillment of my purpose. I hope, in some way, I was able to help her in hers!

Doing it Dexter Style (pg 154): Scientific, “Newtonian” proof that relationships are not meant to last

Turning your passion into profit, living true to your self, achieving freedom, and nomadpreneuring are all about living the life of your dreams. Of course, for many of us, our intimate relationships are a part of those dreams. In order to achieve the sort of satisfying relationships you dream of, it is important to recognize that a new paradigm is required. According to “If you want to be my girlfriend…” featuring Dexter Style:

the goal is to honestly express the self, and enter into relationships based on standards and choice, in which honesty is encouraged, freedom results, and pleasure and happiness are maximized. In such a paradigm:

standards = clarity

Clarity = choice

choice= compatibility

exchange = equivalence

honesty = health

endings = evolution

evolution = happiness

The following is a specific excerpt on endings

Scientific, “Newtonian” proof that relationships are not meant to last

“Compromise is the friction that slows a relationship.
Passivity is the gravity that pulls it down.”

Okay here’s “scientific” proof that relationships aren’t meant to last. It’s a fact of scientific knowledge that nothing in the universe stays the same. In other words, things are either increasing or decreasing, expanding or contracting. Stars explode and expand, and then contract into black holes. Even the very solid and permanent chair you’re sitting on, or, perhaps, the very solid e-reader you’re using to read this, is actually decaying and falling apart. It’s tending toward failure. It’s on a trend towards decay.
Now, according to Newton’s First Law of Motion:

An object at rest tends to stay at rest, and
an object in motion tends to stay in motion,
unless acted upon by an outside force.

A practical illustration of this is that an apple on the ground, tends to stay on the ground. An apple thrown into the air would continue to go upward, but it is “acted upon” by the force of gravity, and is eventually pulled back to earth. A car pushed into motion would continue to move forward, but is acted upon by the force of friction of the engine, axles, wind resistance, and/or the friction of the tires on the pavement.

Now, you might not like to think of your relationship as an object that is subject to the laws of Newtonian physics, but it does apply. In other words:

A relationship at rest tends to stay at rest, and
a relationship in motion tends to stay in motion,
unless acted upon by an outside force.

Like the apple, even if your relationship is trending upwards, at some point it will peak and level off because of the inevitable and natural forces that exist in our finite universe. The Kybalion’s Principle of Rhythm, the concept of Yin and Yang, and other universal truths support this.

Even if it plateaus and levels off, you’re not really out of danger. Since nothing can stay the same, leveling off, “plateauing” or staying the same, is actually equivalent to declining. Don’t believe me? Let me give you an example….

For more, download a preview chapter and order the paperback here: “If you want to be my girlfriend…”

This book has been re-titled: Masculinity 2.0

Free Teleclass by the other me on Monday October 8, 2012!

In my alter-ego and not-so-secret identity as “the Passion Prophet” coach, I’ll be doing a free call-in “Turn Your Passion into Profit” and “Living True to Your Self” teleclass/seminar on Monday, Oct 8, 2012. In this class, I’ll be discussing the formula and philosophy that allowed me the freedom to be a nomadpreneur! Check it out!

Here are some of the questions that I’ve received that I’ll be answering during the call*.

“What if I have too many passions?”

“How do I deal with toxic people in my life?”

“How can I predict my passion profit?”

“How long should I give my spouse to pursue his/her passion before I insist they get a real job?”

“When do I quit my job?”

“How will my Passion Personality result affect my success turning my passion into profit?”

This is going to be a very powerful call! Make sure you’re on the call early, or email your question to make sure I have it!

Don’t miss it!

WHEN: Monday, October 8, 2012

TIME: 8PM EASTERN TIME (see time zone converter below)


Dial-in Number:

Access Code:


*Here are two convenient time zone converters to make sure you have the right time of the call in YOUR part of the world:

Walt F.J. Goodridge Author and Nomadpreneur
Turn Your Passion Into Profit
Living True to Your Self
Yesterday’s You: How to Reverse Aging
If you want to be my girlfriend…”
view all

P.S. Here’s what the latest customer and reader had to say on the site:

“Ive seen a lot of motivational books (such as Tony Robbins stuff) and this one is VERY different. What you don’t get is the typical fluff and puff of most motivational writings that only temporarily make you feel inspired yet leaving the reader with not knowing really how to apply it. This author actually describes the “HOW TO” in coming up with your own passion ideas for making an income stream based off what you know and what you are passionate about. This is the KEY difference.He describes the step by step process and even shows…” Read what else Steve had to say

That darned Cynthia Edward…I should never have trusted her!

Here’s an email I received.  I am shocked! I truly thought Cynthia was my friend.  I guess I misjudged her character.

Change of Ownership Alert

Attn; I’m Hon. William James, the Chief Director of Finance Officer of the Ministry of Finance. We wish to urgently confirm from you if actually you know one Mrs. Cynthia Edward who claims to be your business associate/partner.

Kindly reconfirm this application put in by Mrs. Cynthia Edward – she submitted the under listed bank account information supposedly sent by you to receive the funds on your behalf.

The bank information she applied with are stated thus:

Account Name: Cynthia Edward
Bank name: Citi Bank NA
Bank address: #1230 Arch Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107, USA
Account Number: 013439887655
Routing Number: 2771722
Swift Code: CITIUS30

The said Mrs. Cynthia Edward has claimed to this office that you are dead and have Instructed that all relevant documentation/Information regarding your Payment/Transfer, be changed to her as the beneficiary of the payment short-listed among the foreign beneficiaries entitled to receive their payment.

For your Information, this Government has approved the total amount of EIGHT MILLION, FIVE HUNDRED THOUSAND UNITED STATES DOLLARS ONLY, in your favor, prior to the Federal Government instructions/mandate to offset all outstanding payments to the various legal foreign beneficiaries around the world and your payment file was affected. We need to confirm from you if it’s really true that you are dead as made mention by your Associate.

You should note that, if we do not hear from you, we automatically assume that you are actually dead and the information passed to us by Mrs. Cynthia Edward is correct. Hence, you are hereby requested to reply this Email immediately for confirmation, before we proceed with this payment and for us to know the true position of things with you so that we won’t make any mistakes/errors in remitting your out-standing payment to a wrong person/account. Lastly, you are advice to reply back this email and reconfirm the details of this message if truly you’re alive.

Full name………………………………

Direct telephone number………………….





Bank name………………………………

Bank address……………………………

Bank account……………………………

Account type……………………………

Your quick response will help us a lot.

Yours, Sincerely,
Hon.William James.

Pascal Antoine! The man, the myth, the legend…the force!

I thank him every chance I get.

Pascal Antoine was the man who introduced me to the internet back on 1997! I remember the day well. It was at his apartment in Brooklyn where he, um, loaned me a copy of Teach Yourself HTML 4 which I used to, well, teach myself HTML 4, design my own websites and become the man I am today! (Yes, Pascal, it was a loan. That’s my story and I’m sticking with it! I’ll return it soon!)

Pascal Antoine is the myth, who as “CoolP” was getting tens of thousands of hits to his website back in 1996, when AOL was dial-up, and Mark Zuckerberg was 12 years old.

Pascal Antoine is the legend, who as Rapper “Antoine” was featured on BET (um, that was on my record label), and on whose light and funny video for “canufeelit” I made a cameo appearance.


China readers click here to view

Pascal Antoine is the French-born force for social change who is now founder of the immensely popular website, and who uses his considerable technical skills and videographer’s eye to reveal a different side of Haiti for the benefit of residents, expats and the world at large. He even arranges tours to show Haiti to tourists, business prospects and anyone interested in seeing the world through a different lens.

Yesterday, we had lunch at Vegetarian Paradise Two (Yes, Vina, I’m still here), and then hung out in a Starbucks at Union Square where, once again, he’s bringing me (kicking and screaming this time) into the 21st Century with ipads and iphones, and other technology and platforms I’ll be using during my next China excursion. Yes, I’m now seriously considering actually getting a smartphone to replace my camera! I resisted it, but after Pascal blogged about our meeting right from Starbucks (scooping me by a few hours), and responded to emails with voice commands, who knows, Siri might actually become my new best friend!

The man, the myth, the technology maven! Photo by iphone

The man, the myth, the technology maven! Photo by digital camera

Why I’ll ALWAYS love Saipan!

“Once upon a time, there was a Jamaican civil engineer living in New York who hated his job, followed his passion, started a sideline business publishing his own books, made enough money to quit his job, escaped the rat race, ran off to a tropical island in the Pacific, and started a tourism business so he could give tours of the island to pretty girls every day….and live a nomadpreneur’s dream life.”

Saipan will always have a special place in my heart and soul for one simple reason: the CNMI was the first country that I consciously deliberately CHOSE to live as a self-aware human being.

Through a fortunate “accident” of birth, I landed in Jamaica, West Indies. And while I’m eternally thankful I did, I didn’t choose to be there (not consciously anyway).

When my parents emigrated to the US mainland, I wasn’t part of that decision-making process either.

But, Saipan! Ahhh, yes Saipan! I ended up here, motivated by the pursuit of my own definition of happiness. I didn’t come here for a job. I didn’t come here for family. I came here simply for freedom and happiness.

And to share that happiness, beginning in 2006, I started writing for the Saipan Tribune, did a few “saipanpreneur” workshops, gave a few tours to visiting tourists, and, beginning with, started a bunch of websites all of which you can view at

Six years later, people are still discovering Saipan through those sites….which brings me to my request:

I’ve just revamped the WELOVESAIPAN site, but I need some new faces and stories to post on the site since a few of the currently featured residents have moved on. I’d especially like to hear from and feature those individuals who are currently active in bringing about change in the CNMI! (don’t be shy, you and I know who you are, and this is a good way to speak out and take control of Saipan’s image on a popular site that people find through Google)

If you’re a current–or even past–resident who’s coming back (and I’m hearing from a few), check out the new format of Email me with a testimonial of why you (still) love Saipan, and attach or link me to a photo you’d like to use! It’s that simple, but it will make a powerful public, and global statement!

Let me get you started: “It’s because I DO STILL love Saipan and want it to maintain its beauty, as well as evolve and prosper that I do what I do….”

“…sure, but can he compose a concise memo from a 6′ x 9′ cubicle???*

Watch the video on Youtube:

Here’s my well-thought-out opinion:

That’s all well and good, and the little tune he’s playing is nice. But, there’s no future in this. It is incumbent upon us as parents NOT to let our children be distracted by such trivial and impractical pursuits while we mold them into the little corporate cogs, bureaucracy builders and factory fodder they must one day become. It’s the only way.”

Walt F.J. Goodridge,The Jamaican in China and… author of

Turn Your Passion Into Profit,
Living True to Your Self,
and The Tao of Wow


*From the “Soon to be Retracted Gaffes” Department of Walt’s Profiles in Passion website!

click view/download video if you’re in China or other locale without Youtube access!

How To Be Free and Conscious in A Society of Enslavement and Fear

“It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society.”
– Jiddu Krishnamurti

My internet buddy, Winston Wu, sent me an article he wrote that I found very interesting and on-point! He and I share a lot of similar ideas on breaking free and living true to your self! You can check out Winston’s article here:
How To Be Free and Conscious in A Society of Enslavement and Fear

Here’s an excerpt:
From birth, we are taught obedience and conformity in school. Then we are conditioned to believe that our purpose in life is to “work and make money” (become a slave in other words). All of this serves to condition people to “want” a life of enslavement. If you’ve noticed, when most Americans (and Asians) who “live to work” lose their jobs or become unemployed, they feel worthless and miserable, as though their lives had no meaning, purpose or function anymore. Without a form of “paid enslavement” and servitude, they have no idea what to do, as they are empty and void on the inside with no value except that given to them by the economic system. In effect, they are “depressed without their enslavement” which is crazy and bizarro if you think about it. This is the result of their conditioning. It’s a really sad sordid state of affairs. But that is how people are conditioned.

Ironically, in spite of “wanting their enslavement”, most people live oppressed lives where they watch the clock, live for Fridays and dread Mondays, with short-lived weekend breaks between them that whiz by like a gust of wind. What an awful way to live! This is the epitome of oppression. Even animals don’t live that way. It’s not natural. Humans were not meant to…
Read More…

By the way, if you haven’t already, please “like” my Jamaican in China facebook fan page! It would make my day!

What I Learned from my Three Evictions

“On the day I returned home to find the sheriff’s eviction notice on my front door, I smiled. I smiled because I knew a secret…”

If you’re hoping that one of the lessons I learned by my third eviction is “how not to get evicted,” then you might be disappointed by what I have to share. However, what I did learn may be more valuable to you even if you’re not facing a similar situation.

Yes, in the process of transitioning from being an employee to being a full-time passionpreneur I was, in fact, evicted on three separate occasions from three separate apartments. Once in the Bronx, New York, and twice in Silver Spring, Maryland. The records are there! Before I was evicted from my apartment in New York, I really enjoyed my time here, and so that’s why I wanted to have a look for some apartments for rent in the city. Unfortunately, it wasn’t meant to be and I had to start looking for somewhere else to live, which wasn’t ideal but it was something that needed to be done.

However, not once during those episodes did I doubt my decision to walk away from my civil engineering job to pursue my passion. Not once did I consider going back to corporate employment.

From the very beginning, you see, I saw my journey as similar to a quest to get from one side of a deep canyon to the other. On the side of the canyon on which I was dwelling at the time, there was the soul-killing, life draining unhappiness, restriction, imprisonment and lack of fulfillment of my nine-to-five job. On the other sidewhere I wanted to be-there was the freedom of being self-employed, the fulfillment of living my function, and the fun that comes with being in control of my days.

I knew there was a way to get from here to there. There must be. Every journey from point “A” to point “B” is nothing more than a series of steps. I knew that if others could do it, I could too. If others could quit their jobs and become successful entrepreneurs, then I could too. As a civil engineer, I knew there had to be formula. And, I knew was smart enough to figure it out.

So, on the day I returned to find the sheriff’s eviction notice on front door, I smiled. I smiled because I knew a secret. I knew that if my dream life existed on the other side of the chasm, then the only way to get to that other side was to take the journey and risk the uncertainty and the fall. That eviction notice was a clear indication that something in my life was changing. This was my “fall.”

By welcoming and enduring the fall, and the changes that came with it, I emerged on the other side with a few lessons. Here, therefore, is what I learned from my three evictions:

I learned about the reconstruction crisis

Based on what I had learned in the many self-help books and courses I had taken, I knew there would be chaos. I knew there would be drama. I knew there would be ups and downs. In fact, by my third eviction, I coined a name for it that I now share with my coaching clients who find themselves at similar crossroads in their own lives. I call it the “Reconstruction Crisis.” Here’s how I define it in my book, Living True to Your Self:

[begin excerpt]
“If you are living in a house and wish to build a bigger better house, it may be necessary to demolish the existing structure to its very foundation before you start building anew. In much the same way, once this creative universe we live in gets its orders from you that you want to change your reality, forces are set in motion that begin making the necessary changes in your life. If you’ve been living with people who think negatively, who are going nowhere in their lives, you may find that you argue more frequently. You may realize that a person you thought you knew, has grown in an entirely different direction from where you are now. You may have to make some hard decisions about who to keep with you on your journey, and who to leave along the way. If not, these individuals may hold you back from reaching your dreams.

Similarly, if you’ve found your self in a nowhere job, and you wish for the fulfillment and freedom of living true to your self, don’t be surprised if things start happening which lead to a (forced or voluntary) separation from your present place of employment.

These strange occurrences, which at first may appear to be the onset of chaos in your life, are part of a phenomenon I call “reality reconstruction.” It usually happens right after a new reality is wished for and committed to significantly.” [end excerpt]

Yes, my evictions taught me about the “Reconstruction Crisis.”

I learned that there’s life beyond eviction

Being evicted is not a death sentence. As you think about now from the safety and comfort of your home, it may seem embarrassing. It may seem humiliating. It may seem like the worst thing that could happen to you. Trust me, it is not. It is survivable. There are options. There are choices. For me, it meant living on a friend’s couch until I could see my way clear of the chaos. For others it may mean leaning on friends, relatives or the federal government. My evictions taught me that there’s life beyond eviction.

I increased my tolerance for risk and uncertainty

I knew intuitively that this was the necessary path life had carved out for me–or more accurately, that I had crafted for myself–by my choices here on this plane, as well as from on the “other side.”

Yes, my evictions taught me to live with a certain amount of risk and uncertainty.

I learned how to let go

I’ve learned that most all of life’s lessons are designed to teach tolerance, patience, faith and detachment. In the pursuit of freedom, function and fun (my definition of living true to my self), I can never be free if I am attached to anything. In the process of going through three evictions, I learned how to give up many things. My attachment to a particular definition of your self. My attachment to money. My attachment to what others think of me. All of these were weights that kept me bound.

Later in life, this ability to let go served me well when I pursued my dream of being a nomadpreneur and escaped from America to live on an island in the Pacific. Yes, my evictions taught me how to let go.

I increased my confidence

My evictions–and the subsequent turnaround and upswing in my life–increased my confidence in what I was capable of enduring as well as accomplishing.

I learned how to conjure up money

Today, I live a magical life. Money comes when I need itsometimes at the eleventh hour and last minute. My evictions taught me that I live in an abundant, supportive universe, and that money and assistance can come from the most unexpected places once I was free to recognize the source, for instance there can be many sources that can seek out for assistance, such as this public crowdfunding for rent assistance.

Yes, my three evictions taught me that money does not come from an employer. It does not come from a job. It does not come from people. It comes through these individuals and institutions as a function of the value you bring to the world. The people who hand you money are compelled and are merely reacting in response to the natural law of exchange. This brings me to a very important lesson.

I learned what I needed to do while couch surfing

The purpose of my evictions was essentially to teach me a new way of being, thinking and acting. While I was surfing my friends’ couches, I was not looking for a job. I was not sending out my resume. I was creating a different concept of myself. I was creating value. I was creating a different relationship with money. I was building websites, experimenting with business ideas, creating products and services based on my concept of myself and my value. I was un-becoming an employee, and becoming a passionpreneur.
Yes, my three evictions taught me how to create real value.

I learned the secret to it all

The secret to it all is this: you can achieve anything you desire if you have two qualities–courage and discipline. These two qualities are essentially two sides of the same coin. Courage is discipline in the face of fear. Discipline is courage in the face of distraction.

If, despite the fear, you have the courage to jump into the chaos to see where it takes you, and if, despite the distraction or derision of others, you have the discipline to keep doing so, eventually the dust will settle, the path will become clear, you will see what the chaos was creating for you, and you will eventually discover the you you have been dreaming about is waiting for you on the other side.

I learned to view them as friends

I think of my three evictions as friends who appeared in my life to teach me certain lessons. Without them, I wouldn’t be where I am today.

As I said, being asked to leave a place of residence because of failure to pay my rent is something that happened to me three times within the space of a few years. I joke that what I dreamt for myself was so different from who I was, and where I was, that it took three different evictions to teach and reinforce who and what I needed to become in order to move to the land of my dreams. (If your life is going through a similar shakeup, let’s hope you don’t have to go through three of them yourself in order to get it right, but you never know!)

Of course, sometimes evictions bring with them the simple reminder to live life more responsibly. Sometimes, however, evictions appear because they are exactly what YOU have requested of the universe in order to shake things up, help you let go of limiting beliefs about yourself, about others and the world you live in, reveal your strength to you, place you in a different reality, and lead you to the life you’ve been dreaming of! Here’s hoping your eviction serves you well in discovering the real you!

For the record, I have learned how to create value and earn money to pay my rents (i.e. “how not to get evicted”), and even travel the world, . However, that lesson is not nearly as important as the knowledge I’ve gained along the way. I’ve learned how to live true to my self so that “evictions” (a metaphor for the chaos of change) are not as drastic as they once were. However, as I evolve and redefine myself, if, for whatever reason, I ever find myself living in a way that is inconsistent with my purpose or my aspirations of who or where I want to be, another “eviction” may just be required to shake me up and set me free! I’ll let you know!

p.s. This article was inspired by a friend who, right now, seems to be going through a similar reconstruction crisis. I’ll share with you what I shared with him:

“The symphony of change often begins with an overture of chaos. Listen to it well. Embrace it. It means change is afoot. Run towards it as fast as you can! Resistance is futile, and simply delays the inevitable.”

“Make money doing what you love!”

F R E E D O M I S A C H I E V A B L E!
Freedom to Live on Purpose!
Freedom to Prosper
Freedom to Escape!
Freedom to Love Honestly
Freedom to be Ageless!

Walt F.J. Goodridge
“The Passion Prophet”
I support The Zeitgeist Movement