Sunday, April 24, 2016

How I feed my soul by lessons learned in life

By: Ron Valderrama/Tragically Hip Living

That old saying, "With age comes wisdom" is often true with me when it comes to the road of life. What was once important in my 20s may not have the same meaning in my 50s. A night of going out and drinking meant having a hangover and spending the next day in bed. As I became older, a night of drinking required two days to recover and sometimes longer. I rarely drink now and the difference is that I know my limits. It's funny when you really think about it, the mind has no clue it's getting older. It's the body that informs the mind that we now have limitations. For years I struggled with it, a sports injury would take longer to heal, a night out required more down time, many things required more time to recover. In youth, we are taught to go to school, get a good job and start a family and live happily ever after.
The problem is that it may not work out that way, it didn't certainly for me. I quickly discovered there is not an owners manual or "How to fix a Fuck-Up for Dummies." It wasn't until I lost everything that I figured it out, and the answer was really quite simple. I discovered that for me, I am not on the same journey another person may be on, my wants and needs may be something totally different. Some may want lots of money, a big house, and fancy car, that's great if that's what one desires. I thought that's what I wanted too in my younger years but soon discovered that after losing all those things, we as a society are judged by those very things. Think about this, when we meet someone for the first time, one of the first things asked is "what we do for a living."
It's one element on how we define a person. If a person is a janitor or a Wall Street investor, that person is categorized as to status. I used to do that very same thing, I was judging a person by what they did for a living and money. In my travels of life, for instance, I have crossed paths with some extraordinary people. A former championship boxer who had it all, and lost it all and works at a car wash, a person in entertainment that makes millions of dollars a year and started with nothing but a dream. What do the two have in common? They both are great people when they are not defined by status. You wouldn't know one works at a car wash and the other lives in Beverly Hills. Despite different paths and circumstances, they are simply two down to earth people but defined by society.
If passing them on the street you wouldn't know one was a world champion, had it all and lost it, the other in entertainment who came from nothing and probably makes more money in a day than the boxer in a year. For me, I found balance through time and wisdom, prayer and meditation. Finding what really made me happy and doing what I want to do, not what others wanted me to do. We all need and want money, how we make it and use it is up to that person. The mistakes made in life are not often mistakes, they are often lessons for something much greater that awaits you down the road. I consider myself a spiritual person, I believe in God, the power of the Universe and believe we are here for a purpose. Being older, I realized these things and found I have been blessed beyond measure.
I now do what I love to do, ringside at a fight, maybe travel or just having a coffee on my patio, it's all a blessing indeed and never taken for granted. I truly believe my passion is helping others succeed, that's my calling in life. It brings me great satisfaction when I do, and I've done it a lot. It's done with no intention of receiving anything back, no intention for fanfare or glory, it's done with as much obscurity as possible. The payback is the blessing of seeing it happen for someone, the look on their face when you've helped someone achieve a goal that has been inside them all along, the funny thing is I am blessed tenfold for it every time. It could come in the form of a beautiful ocean sunset on an unexpected last minute trip, maybe a check in the mail for a job you completed and completely forgot about, or maybe just connecting with an old friend that you haven't seen in years.
In a nutshell, what I'm saying is this, the life you live is YOUR life and not someone else's. Everyone one is on their own path, their own journey, whether it be wealth and nice things, or just living a modest simple life, it should be your choice. If you want to be a unicorn, be a unicorn, a chain-smoking monkey, be a chain-smoking monkey, just be and do what you want in life. Our time here on this earth is limited, so stop wasting time because certain restrictions apply, and it's not valid in all areas.

Until next time, have a tragically hip day!

Ron Valderrama can be contacted by email:


  1. Terrific thoughts and great read Ron. I want to be a chain smoking unicorn!