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Filtering by Tag: love

Be the light...

Jamieson Van Loan

This week, one of my favorite humans paid me the best compliment I’ve heard in a very long time. Speaking about me she said, “the fun we had would not have happened without you. You make people want to sing and dance. You bring that out in people. You make us want to have fun.”
I don’t think she knew her words would make me cry, but they did. Joyous tears. The idea that I make people feel joy and fun and give them a space to be themselves. To give them the freedom and luxury to sing and dance without judgement. Holy moly, what a kind beautiful compliment!

My first takeaway is that we should all be so honest and open and giving with our compliments. I am an authentic complimenter; to the point that people may think I’m being fake, but I’m 100% not. I tend to tell people, immediately, if I like something about them, even strangers. I love that quote that says something like “if you see something beautiful in someone, tell them. It may take a second to say, but for them it could last a lifetime.” And it’s so true! We all have memories of kind words spoken about us. It is such an easy and simple way to better someone’s day, so why not do it?!

After evaluating why that compliment made me so emotional, I realized that I never thought those things about myself. Ever. I always felt like I’m the person who has the sturdy shoulders that others can stand upon. I’m the support system to their shine. I’m not the one doing the shining.

But something clicked after she said that. I AM the one who’s shining. I am the freakin’ magic. It’s been me all along. I always thought that the people in my tribe were making me feel great and making me laugh and they add all this value to my life but I didn’t realize that I was doing the same for them. I never anticipated that my presence was pulling out the magic in them. How powerful did that compliment just become?! I am a major part of the reason that my tribe feels comfortable enough to enjoy life and be silly. Woah!
Since this acknowledgement, I have now come to recognize that the light I seek and see in others, tends to be the same exact light that they see and seek in me. We all are making each other glow. We are all highlighting the beautiful, yet sometimes hidden, parts of each other. We are pushing each other to the point of illumination based on our combined vibrations. It is seriously effin’ magical!
We are all radiant beings.

I can only speak for myself but I have to be honest here, I RARELY feel this way. I rarely feel like I am conquering my to-do list. I rarely feel like I am succeeding. I rarely feel like I’ve got it all together. I rarely feel like I am influencing any beauty in this world. I rarely feel on top of anything at all. I feel like I am mostly surviving, just getting by.
That being said though, majority of the time, I feel happy. Like surreal happy. Like questionable happy. Why is that?
I think it is because I have realized that my self-confidence, my inner happiness, is never contingent on exterior situations. I am never defining my true being by what is happening outside of me. Internally, I am grateful. I am happy. I am secure. I am aware.

So what I learned this week, after 36 plus years on this planet, is that I am the freakin’ magic. I am the light. I am my own joy.
And get this- so are YOU! If you are reading this and absorbing any of this, you are your own beautiful light. If you are seeking beyond your own wisdom and growing, you are creating the light within.

With all the hatred in the world (my heart goes out to NZ), my advice today, and every day, is to be that lighthouse for others. Be that guiding illumination that allows people to be authentic and to vibrate higher. And gratefully, bask in their reciprocating glow.  
Jamieson xo
PS. Happiest of birthdays to my best friend, Lauryn! She is the beautiful human who shared these words to me. Lauryn, thank you for always being the brightest light in my world! xo

Love is everything.

Jamieson Van Loan

Think about that statement. Love is everything. It is typically the very first human experience we have. It is what we (hopefully) are trying to fill our lives with. It is what drives us to protect, give, share, experience life with others. It could be argued that it is the driving force behind every major milestone in our lives and history, for that matter. Your love of something outside of yourself has brought you to where you are today. 

Love being the surrounding energy in most of our lives, it is sometimes taken for granted. Think of anytime you've lost your patience or gotten upset at someone you love, that is you taking their love for granted. That is you assuming that your mutual love can withstand negative energies. We forget that love is not owed to us. Someone loving us and being "attached" to us, even with familial love, is never guaranteed. It is why loss is so devastating. The attachment formed through love is broken and the loss, whether expected or not, is devastating. Moral of the story: do not take anyone's love for granted. 

I've been really trying to digest my theories and thoughts on love lately (thanks V-day). What prompts it in my life, how I share it, how I wanted it to be shared with me, my expectations with love, self-love, how willingly I accept love (like how hard is it for you to take a compliment, accept a loving gesture), how my narrative affects how love shows up in my life, etc. 

Since love is a fluid, evolving emotion, it requires attention. You've heard the saying that you attract the love you think you deserve. This means love begins and ends within you. How you love your self mirrors how love shows up in your life. If love is presents itself in a hurtful or less than charming way, it is because you believe that is all you are worthy of. The amazing part of that is you have the control to change that. Do not ever accept love in a form that does not make you completely happy. This applies to all relationships in your life. If you're lowering your standards of shared love between you and a partner, you and a friend, you and a family member, then you should reevaluate their position in your life. Life is too short to accept anything short of magical beautiful love. 

Today when you are out running around in the world, watch how love shows up for you. It is not always arriving in the package we expect. It can be as menial as the person who let's you cut in front of them at the grocery store when you only have one item or a person paying you a compliment. It can be grand and apparent. It can be just a smile. When you refocus your attention on the love constantly surrounding your life- not the chaos, not the to-do list, not the stress- but focus solely on the love, you will have a completely different day. I promise you. 

Love is a gift. No one has to love you. No one has to show up for you. So when they do, appreciate the shit out of that. Love is also vulnerable. Do not tread lightly when love is gifted to you. It should be revered and shown the gratitude it deserves. 

I decided to count how many people I had the pleasure of saying "I love you" to in one day. I said it to eight different humans! I felt, and still feel, so fortunate. To be able to be your authentic self, show up and be seen and appreciated for exactly who you are and have that fully reciprocated by someone else is nothing short of magical. How many people are you going to share that with today? 

Love always, 
Jamieson xo

Ho'opono what?!

Jamieson Van Loan

Our newest addition to the Maikana team, the lovely Carla, (Hi, Carla! I know you're reading this!) has been such a beautiful source of energy and grace. She stormed into our team and completely stole my heart. She had me at yoga, meditation, reiki and all the spiritual travels of her life. 

One amazing thing she taught me about is ho'oponoono (hoe-oh-poh-no-poh-no). This is the Hawaiian practice of forgiveness, reconciliation (more with yourself but also with others) and releasing needless energy surrounding negative situations in your life. 

I'll give you a quick synopsis, but I highly recommend you googling it and listening to videos or reading articles on the forefather of this practice, Dr. Hew Len. 

We are taught that we are 100% responsible for our own actions. And I completely agree with this. We must be completely accountable for our actions.

I've noticed that people tend to use others as their excuses for their own actions. ie. I did this because you made me feel this way or set me off in such a way that I reacted that way. They may take ownership for their actual actions, but they don't take ownership of where those emotions stem from. I must say, I am guilty of this. 

Ho'oponopono is the practice of full responsibility. Total and utter responsibility for everything in your life. It basically means that no matter happens or where it stems from or how it makes you feel, you are completely 100% responsible for the situation in your life and you must take ownership of the situation, positive or negative. 

It is easy for all of us to take kudos for positive situations in our lives. Oh you won an award or got a promotion- kudos, good job. Easy to accept. But what about the negative situations, how do you handle those? 

Ho'oponopono wants you to take full responsibility for negative situations and realize that you essentially brought yourself into that situation and now you must deal with yourself and how to heal from that. It's not that you asked for it, per se, but that your own subconscious and underlying historical perceptions manifest the situations you're finding yourself in. 

When Carla told me about this practice I was a wee bit skeptical. So what... I just own every single thing in my life? Like if someone cheats on me or hits my car- that is my fault?! And the answer is pretty much, yep. 

Your approach, or better yet mantra, to every situation are these four notions: 

1) I'm sorry
2) Please forgive me
3) Thank you
4) I love you

You are to use these four energies for all situations. If you're angry or upset, repeat these lines (over and over again) and send that energy towards that issue. It is supposed to help you take responsibility of whatever happens and to begin to heal from within. We tend to need others' apologies or their ownership to begin to heal from our disparities with them. Ho'oponopono says nope! It is from within that you can heal. No outsider's words or actions can help you heal, only you can move through the recovery. 

I have to say, that since I've started really conceptualizing the practice of ho'oponopono, it has become to make much more sense in my life. It has stopped me from the blame game and the judgmental (read: defensive) stance we can sometimes take in our negative stories. It is a fresh perspective. I recommend you all try it. It may not be for you, but it is a good way to dial issues back in. 

Give it a whirl! Find a way to say, "I'm sorry I caused negativity in your life. Please forgive me for this. Thank you for being open to my apology and open to me as a human and I love you no matter what". It is not easy but it is worth trying. 

Have a beautiful weekend! 

Jamieson xo

Seek refuge...

Jamieson Van Loan

The holidays are filled with joy, laughter, sharing, kindness, compassion and love...mostly. They are also filled with sadness, regrets, depression, stress, anxiety and the more darker emotions. For me, they are a mixed bag.

Like right now, I need a break, a pause. I want to be sitting on a deserted warm beach drinking a mai tai and worried about what time is sunset. Living up the pura vida. But I’m not. And that is ok...with a caveat. If I’m not seeking refuge in travel, I must seek it elsewhere. I must be aware of what I need to recharge, reset and move forward.

I realized how important this is after speaking to a friend who is more of an internalizer and tends to deal with issues in his own head. To some, this may completely work and be fine. I am going to go out on a limb and say that this isn’t the healthiest way to deal with the rollercoaster ride of life. And I told him that.

Humans desire connection and that is made through vulnerability and openness. A major part of being vulnerable is allowing people into the places of your life that aren’t the prettiest. Having humans in your life that can be your sounding board and help you through tough times is of utter importance.
Finding that tribe, the people you connect with on a deep soulful level, is where you can find your refuge from difficult times. I am so so fortunate to be blessed with such an amazing tribe. And they are all over the world. They do not need to be right here, right now (hello facetime). Do not be afraid to reach out during the tough times. I repeat, do not be afraid to reach out during tough times. If not to your tribe, to me. Stranger, friend or client, I am here for you. Always. You are never alone.
Refuges do not have to be just people. They can be a space. I tend to go to my meditation altar or the beach. Certain spaces can be healing and help realign the chaos inside. We need a space to stretch our sanity. Seek those places whenever you need to.
Personal refuge can also be found in the most menial tasks. I love pausing during the day to make myself my favorite tea (umm have you tried Trader Joes’ Winter Wake up- yum!). Or pausing for a two minute meditation- no matter where I am. Deep breathing for ten breaths. All easy to do and all help me move through my day. What little tasks make you feel better?
Although refuge seeking is a major part of self-care, there are also physical ways to self-care during the holidays that help alleviate stress. Figure out what these are for you and add them to your day. For me it is yoga. I do not let anything mess with my yoga schedule this time of year. As a bonus, I love going to the infrared spa, Inner Light in Darien. I always feel so much better after a session there.
Do not be afraid to drop plans during this schedule-packed time of year to find space to heal. As a people pleaser, I find this the most difficult to do. To say no when I need to. Say no to what does not fill your soul. I have to ask myself this all the time, “is this going to make me happy or stressed out?” And there are some stressful things that have to be worked through but if the ultimate answer is not bringing you joy, say no and move on.

So seek refuge. Find your person. Your tribe. Your place to heal. Your work out. Your daily task. Your sanctuary. Find it and own it and appreciate it. Be grateful for the people you can vent to, do not take advantage of their kind ear. Listen to them without wanting to respond. Reciprocate their kindness. We will all survive this holiday season, especially if we do it as a compassionate community. That is the importance of the holiday season- the coming together, reconnecting, fueling each other’s spirit and sharing love.
Be love, share love.
Jamieson xo

Love is all we need.

Jamieson Van Loan

As promised, I am going to chat a little bit about my trip to Mexico. There were so many layers of adventure and experience during those eight days that it's difficult to know where to begin. 

But I will say this, my biggest takeaway from this wonderful trip is that the greatest joy we can experience is to be loved and to share love. 

I have been struggling a lot lately with my thoughts surrounding love. How can this magnificent emotion be a constant source of pain in my life as of late? How can I refocus my energy to enjoy love?  

The vulnerability of allowing another person access to the most sensitive part of our being is not easy for some. It can be quite difficult for most. For others, like myself, it is effortless and simple. For those who know me, I love deeply and easily.

When I vibe with a new human and we can understand each other on a deep molecular level, I love him or her. Instantly. I have made so many beautiful friends in my life because of this connection, this ability to share love freely and openly. For some, love has to unearth itself after time and questions and experience. Love is earned.

How ever you choose to give it, love is successful if your vibrations or frequencies align. It is why some people you meet and in an instant you know you're meant to spend time with them and some people you meet and just go, meh. The energy or vibration you are putting out in the universe aligns with others on the same frequency or wavelength. This is how we judge compatibility within all relationships.

The people you sync up with are a part of your tribe. 

On this trip to Mexico, I realized how much my ability to be open attracts people towards me. I made friends from the minute I got off the plane to the minute I left. I will say, traveling solo forces you outside of the societal induced comfort zone. It requires much more vulnerability than traveling as Noah intended. If you get the chance in life to travel solo, do it. It changes you for the better. 

During my stay in Tulum, I met with a shaman who performed an energy cleanse & massage on me. As out there as that may sound, it is the same premise as acupuncture and clearing blockages in order to help blood, or in this case, energy flow more freely. The shaman's cleanse was so powerful that I cried. I laughed. I was in pain. I felt joy. It moved me through highs and lows.

My biggest lesson learned during this cleanse is that we are all born to love. To receive love and to share that beautiful energy. From early on we are conditioned and altered by experiences to shift this sole desire to love. Finding our way back to this simple notion is a constant evolution. The shaman hugged me and said "you are unconditional love and this love is meant to be shared". Those words have played on repeat in my head since then. My goal in this world is to share love, whether through my food, listening, giving, supporting, etc. This applies to all of us. We are meant to spread love and be open to receiving it.

Try it today, welcome any and all circumstances with love. Not stress, not impatience, not anger, not sadness, not judgment- just pure love. It WILL change your life.

I could go on and on but you need to order your Maikana food! Experience my love through my healthy food that fuels your body. 

Have a wonderful weekend!
Jamieson xo

Choose Kindness.

Jamieson Van Loan

A friend of mine just launched a new podcast and her first episode is on kindness. She says we should make kindness our daily intention. As much as I believe in this philosophy, it is not always easy. 

For example, are you kind to yourself? Are you thanking your healthy body for carrying you through the day or are you criticizing those dimples on your thighs? Are you beating yourself up for not finishing your check list? Or replying to those emails? Or are you being grateful for the freedom of choices? For the luxuries we all have? Kindness always seems much easier to spread to others than to dole unto ourselves. 

When is the last time you gave yourself a mental high five? Do it now. Right now. Bring out your inner cheerleader! 

Once you find the space to be kind to yourself, then spread kindness and love like freakin' delicious peanut butter. Smile at strangers. Better yet, say hello to strangers. This is one thing I miss most about Costa Rica- everyone says hello to each other, always. Pay it forward, in any way you can. Be generous with your time. Listen without needing to respond. Call an old friend. Write someone a handwritten note. Hold open doors. Say please & thank you- and mean it! Be the person that you hope your kids will one day be. The very best versions of you. 

Be kind, folks. It's free and makes the world around you better. It will make you feel better. I promise.

Jamieson xo

Love hard today.

Jamieson Van Loan

A reoccurring theme in my life lately is loss. I could give you a laundry list of these impactful losses but that is not my focus today. I discuss loss and grieving a lot with friends and family. I am a person who benefits from open ears and generous minds. Some like to keep personal thoughts close to their heart, but I like to explore and learn from others. 

We all deal with loss constantly. Sometimes it is as trivial as losing an earring and sometimes it's a loss that rips your heart and soul apart. The old adage that what does not kill you, makes you stronger could not ring truer during these tribulations. 

I have learned a great deal of lessons during the past few months but here are some that have stuck out for me.

1) We do not truly own anything in this world. This Buddhist idea of impermanence is something that I grapple with. From our relationships to material items, nothing is permanent. Everything will evolve. If you can wrap your head around how temporary every aspect of your life is, you not only appreciate more, but it can sometimes soften the blow of a loss. 

2) With loss comes growth. If you do not take the time to dive deeply into your self during a major loss, you will lose much more than you started with. Grief is not only a time to reflect on the past, but a period to do a full life scan. And not a surface scan but to get to levels that help you recognize what has REALLY brought you to this very moment and how you can move forward as the best version of yourself.

3) You are not alone. Now we all know this, but sometimes it takes a lot of strength to reach out for help. Someone in your life can empathize and show compassion and light during your difficult periods. Trust me, my friends have forced me through days I wasn't sure I would survive. Find those compassionate people and love them hard. They will keep you going. They are the light at the end of a very dark and lonely tunnel. Return the favor: be the light for others.

4) Feel all the feelings. It is so important to not mask your emotions or run from them. It is ok to cry or yell or break down. Let it happen. Your mind needs the release. Do not avoid these feelings. It will come out in one form or another so let them. Pretending you are A-OK will not solve anything. Feelings fester. Liberate them.

If you know someone dealing with any fashion of a loss, reach out to them. Love them hard. They need it!


Our menu for next week is below and don't forget on Fridays you can use our discount code: FRIDAY5 for 5% off your order.

I hope you all have a healthy and beautiful weekend!
Jamieson xo

love. love. love.

Jamieson Van Loan

I hope you all had a wonderful Valentine's week. I hope it was shared with people who love you. Unconditionally. 

If you want to share love outside of your life, I urge you to volunteer for a charity. The most precious commodity we have is our time and to spend it giving back to your community and to strangers is beautiful. I try to spend every Monday and Friday at The Open Door Shelter in Norwalk. I help prepare and serve lunch there. It is my happy place. It helps refine my purpose. 

I realize we are all extremely busy with beautiful lives. Who has "extra" time? But if you had all the time in the world, what would you do it? Contribution to your community, especially the less fortunate, should be on that list. Start sharing your love. 

I hope you all have fun plans this weekend. If you have Monday off, enjoy it! Maikana is open. Please see your menu below or click here. Don't forget you always get 5% off if you places your orders today. Promo code: FRIDAY5. 

Sending LOVE your way,
Jamieson xo

Spread love like it's nutella.

Jamieson Van Loan

Someone close to me passed away this week. I am not sharing this because I want sympathy or condolences. I am sharing it because death of a loved one is the greatest reminder to be grateful. We all have a finite amount of time on this planet. We go to bed each night stressing over what is to be done or checked off our ever-growing lists and you never know if you'll even see tomorrow. I do not mean to be dark or grim. I, personally, always take life, and health for that matter, a little for granted. I think we all do. And when someone passes away that shed light into your years, you tend to take stock of your life and your remaining loved ones and you begin to seek more gratitude. It is such a shame that death or negative moments in our lives always tend to be the catalyst of a really in-depth scan of our existence. Alas, it is and so today I am truly grateful for everything I have, including all of you. Maikana has given me a purpose beyond what I had imagined. Thank you.

I ask all of you to hug your loved ones a little closer today and truly inhale the love that is constantly around you. We have much more than we will ever need and yet we are always seeking more. Just for one day, stop and be happy for everything you already have. 

Jamieson xo

It takes a village...

Jamieson Van Loan

We have all heard the saying "It takes a village." And I had always been one of those people who thinks, "Eh, I live on an island. I do things on my own." Most of my life this island had been warm and cozy and controlled by moi. But there comes a point in everyone's life when your island is no longer sustainable. There comes a point when you NEED a village! And it is not easy for us island-living independents to reach out to the village. I came to this point a couple years ago and it certainly was a humbling experience. I realized I cannot do it all on my own. I needed a team, a strong team, to get me through difficult and chaotic situations. I was not Miss Independent (thanks Kelly Clarkson!). 

If you are someone who tries to do everything on your own-kudos to you! But I urge you to reach out to your village from time to time- not necessarily for help but just a sounding board. It is not easy taking the world on all by yourself. I did it for a long time. And although I loved every minute of it, I would have not gotten to where I am today if I did not reach out to my tribe. People have said to me, "Oh but I feel bad putting you in that position" when I can see they genuinely need help and I offer. Do not feel bad. That is what your tribe is for! We are here to carry the weight you cannot lift alone. 

Call your tribe this weekend. Your island needs a village. 

Jamieson xo

Love the one you're with.

Jamieson Van Loan

A male friend of mine asked me yesterday, "How do I know if I'm the love of her life?" My question back to him was, "Does it really matter?" We briefly discussed our rationales behind our stances, but the whole time the song "Love the One You're With" by Crosby, Stills & Nash kept playing in my head. 

When we are given the gift of love by anyone- whether it be innately like with our children or by our family (most of the time) or it truly falls into our lives like with our partners and great friends- love is a gift! Accept it and treat it as such. Do not question the ins and outs of it. Do not analyze it and wonder how deep or true it is. Just be grateful. With that love comes trust, acceptance, loyalty- all of these are a wonderful gift. So if you are lucky enough to have love in your life, even on the Hallmark holiday of Valentine's Day- celebrate! It speaks volumes of who you are. 

Happy Friday everyone! Have a wonderful long weekend! Maikana Foods will see you on Tuesday.

Jamieson xo