You know the feeling when you show up at a new school and everyone’s wearing trucker hats but you secretly don’t really get the hype yet you rock one anyway? This is a story of finding the courage to allow ourselves to grow into our own identity (and toss the trucker hat out.)
This summer, about 9 months after we opened our doors as a studio, Hiroko & I had the opportunity to step back and re-evaluate the last year. It’s been a huge year of learning, exploring, and discovering- yet also one of fatigue and burnout. How ironic it was to be singing the praises of meditation, only to be exhausted and far from our glowing selves. We didn’t feel aligned.
We felt as if something was missing. Some crucial piece we may have overlooked. We spent two months gathering feedback- from friends, past and present guests of MOMENT, business coaches, and colleagues in the entrepreneurial world. Everyone was excited for what we had created and what was to come yet no one could answer our question of – “What’s missing?”.
We were told from certain experts in the business world that the hustle and grind are necessary initiations if we wanted to succeed and be taken seriously and that pushing through exhaustion was required. Again, we didn’t feel aligned.
So we started searching inwards. (As one does as a meditator.) We got clear on our values and recognized where we had lost ourselves. We re-cemented our mission-to support a mindful community in finding more calm, happiness, & focus.
Supporting a mindful community (and a meditation habit) does not look like paying drop-ins per class in a stark (albeit clean and trendy) studio. Instead, supporting a mindful community is more akin to a bustling home- ripe with activity, conversation, and quite often, food. Supporting a mindful community means providing opportunities for personal growth, relationships, service, and of course- fun.
Boy, do we want to have fun.
And so, we are shaking things up. We recognized the transactional nature of a studio was not what would best serve our mission. We are not interested in being just another class in your week. We want to be the home for mindfulness.
So what does this mean? See how it works here.
In introducing the House of Moment, we hope you, too, will come through and carve out some time for fun (and happiness, and calm). We look forward to seeing you, our mindful collective, soon.
I am Lucky. So very lucky. Italian culture is viewed positively. Everywhere I go, when I say where I come from, most of the times I am showered with positive comments. I think one of the many reasons is that the boot-shaped country has a culture of gathering, of helping. It is viewed, and it is, a place where community means a big deal. Whether it's eating together (have you ever been to an Italian Wedding?) or supporting your neighbours (make some lasagna for your neighbour Pina whose cat died). I hold childhood memories of my parents’ community, of gatherings, of all over-friendly people and these are so dear to my heart.
By no means I am saying that Canada is not a warm place or that I was not welcomed well. And it is also true that, since I was a child, almost 4 decades have gone by and times have changed. We are moving, whether we are aware of it or not, towards a culture of individualism, of indirect personal interactions, and away from personal community ties.
Even in our evolved Vancouver group of people (me included), the language is often a language of “I”, “moi”, “io”, “Ich”. We speak often, so so often of “how lean I eat, where I train, what I do on my IG. “I”
Since I moved here, 5 years ago, I have often had moments of sheer isolation. I lived in a condo for 4 years next to an Iranian family, and the day they moved away, I went to say goodbye and the answer I got was: “why do you bother, we did not even get to know one another”. And they were right.
So recently I have been starting to really, strongly, crave a Deeper Sense of Relationships with others. A sense of belonging, of trust, of vulnerability, of care. Craving a life where others matter because their stories belong to us, their destiny matter, where we can offer support knowing that we can rely on that same support back. Interrelation, interdependence. Care, cura.
This inner thirst brought some external movements. I moved in to a coop. I visited incredible places, like Abundance farm, a communal agricultural farm outside Vancouver. And then I decided, with Anita, to radically transform our brain child Moment.
Moment is now the House of Moment. It will not have clients any longer. It will have family members, and friends, and beloved guests. Those that want to be part of the family will pay 1$ a day. And then we will gather everyday. To sit, to share the painful and wonderful experience of being human, we will volunteer out there in the bigger community, and we will celebrate, and we will learn. But most importantly we will be together. Because it is by being together that we heal, that we increase our well being, it is by means of connecting that we get to make our life meaningful, and our existence worth while.
Welcome to the House of Moment. I hope you will come to gather with us. Your presence will matter.