Workaholic to Alive and Purposeful


I grew up not wanting to be like my father.  While I wouldn’t call him abusive, my dad was really domineering most of the time. He was a mechanic, incredibly skilled with his hands, and not so good at expressing his feelings. Dad had a tremendous amount of anger coursing through him, and fear as well. He pushed all that anger and fear onto us, as well as his attitude towards sex and women.

My father’s garage was decorated with posters and calendars of naked women.  Even when I was little, he would describe these bodies and what he wanted to do to them.  Maybe he was trying to bond with his son, but it didn’t work.  It disgusted me. I decided I wanted to be different from him in any way I could be.  I tried to be his opposite in how I treated women, and that meant putting them on pedestals.  I decided I was going to wait until marriage to have sex.  Then I decided that good people didn’t need to wait for marriage, but they did need to wait for true love.  And I was determined to be a good person.

By the time I came to OM, I was really alone. I was a workaholic, and I hardly ever socialized.  The few friends I had had all slowly dwindled away.  I could go a whole month without having a conversation with anyone except co-workers. I hadn't had sex in years. I had demonized sex in my head, thinking that if I went back to having it, I would be a bad man just like my father. I would end up callous and disconnected.  So, I just shut down my desires. Better lonely and starved for touch than hating myself.

Eventually I heard someone talk about OM at a party I was at. I looked it up online and ended up registering for an intro course. My first OM was confronting and uncomfortable.  I couldn’t figure out how to sit; I felt like no matter how I moved, I would be uncomfortable.  My physical discomfort was matched by my emotional tension. I was worried that somehow, I’d offend or upset the woman I was stroking.  I pushed through all those fears and feelings, and I managed to keep my attention on my finger. It was really, really intense. I felt this buzzing, almost like something was vibrating inside my finger, and it radiated up my arm and into my shoulder and torso.  As I held my attention on that buzzing, it took all my psychological discomfort and mopped it up, as if the heat we were generating from the OM caused all the worry and doubt to evaporate.

OM has so many facets, but the one that’s become central in my life is purpose.  I mentioned at the beginning that my driving goal as a boy was to be different from my dad.  I chose a different life from his in every way I could.  It took me a long time to realize that that wasn’t a purpose.  I worked hard seven days a week, but I didn’t know what I was doing with my life.  OM has given me the tools to think about why I do anything I do – and to discover what my passion and purpose is in this life. I don’t need to get into the details, but I know why I work now, you know?  That’s deeply satisfying.

OM also reframed my relationships.  A few months ago, my girlfriend and I were on the verge of breaking up.  She was the one who wanted out. I had this idea, and it came straight from inspiration I had unlocked through my OM practice. I told her we should take a week to break up, and we should spend our break-up week doing all the things we had talked about doing but hadn’t made happen during our relationship. We went to Disneyland, we went to a winery or two, we went to an amazing rave.  All the while, we kept sharing whatever we were thinking, without worrying how the other person would take it.  If we were sad, mad, excited, curious, whatever it was, we shared it.  And no, we didn’t get back together at the end of that week – but we did, a month later.  The “breakup week” was a foundation for a much better relationship.  

I wouldn’t even have thought of something so “out of the box” if it hadn’t been for OM, and I could never have been so consistently truthful if it weren’t for this practice.  I don’t think I’ll ever stop being surprised by what OM can show me.