It has been months since we have connected, and although I cannot say that I am back and better than ever, I have returned with more clarity and a greater understanding of what makes Jared Yellin who he is as a person. Although our most recent correspondence has been sporadic at best, during this hiatus I was not sitting back and allowing the world to pass me by, but rather I was learning more about myself than I ever thought possible.
When Brandentity was first launched, I felt like I was literally on top of the world. My career was soaring; the identity revolution was growing rapidly; my thoughts and actions were congruent; I was living a life of health and wellness; I was closer with my family and friends than ever before; and eventually, I began a relationship with someone whom I thought was the missing piece in my existence. I was abundant in every sense of the word, and if nothing were to have changed, I would have lived a life of complete and utter fulfillment…or so I thought—I felt invincible. I say this with no disrespect or ignorance, but rather with a level of complete transparency of my emotions.
As 2010 began, I was introduced to a group of investors who were in the process of a large merger and acquisition of a nutraceutical company. They offered me the opportunity to take on an enormous amount of responsibility as a manager of the company and the spokesperson for all marketing initiatives. Simultaneously, I pursued a relationship with someone whom I thought was completely congruent with me, as I was with her, and we decided to move rapidly, forgoing the formative experiences that “might” be essential when it comes to building a foundation for a thriving relationship. As time progressed, I began to lose what made me who I was and began to suffer from an identity crisis.
The irony of this realization is that I still had an enormous following as a result of Brandentity, and many people would contact me on a regular basis with the desire to understand how I “found myself” at such a young age. During this time, I literally received 100’s of messages surrounding the concept of an identity crisis, but was unable to respond as I suffered from the same epidemic as many of you. I literally could not look at the website; I could not reach out for speaking opportunities; and I could not respond to people who were asking for advice…the year Brandentity was launched, was the year I lost myself. The once “so together” Jared Yellin was spiraling out of control as my passion for life was dormant and my beliefs of what was possible became non-existent.
But how could this happen when I literally just launched Brandentity? How could I make comments about introspection and finding myself, and how my past no longer dictates my present, and how I was unscathed by my parents challenging divorce, and how my tagline was “confidence is my presence, never tense, never hesitant?”
How could I be this blind???????????????????
And now, 360 degrees in 365 days later, I can tell you that I was not blind, I was not ignorant, and I was not lost. I was deaf because I refused to hear the screaming of my intuition that things were so incongruent; and instead, focused on the superficial components of my life while ignoring the guidance of my inner voice.
So here is my update, and I share this with you because I have a feeling that many of you have either experienced a journey like this in the past, are currently on an adventure like the one I will share, or are perpetually living in an abyss of chaos.
The private equity deal could not have been further from what I was looking to achieve in my life, even though on the surface I had everything when it came to finances, responsibility, and opportunity. It was strictly a business, and although I love the dynamics of the business world, I realized that I need to associate myself with like-minded individuals who are driven towards giving back to humanity. This did not exist, nor was it ever going to exist, but the opportunity did provide an enormous amount of autonomy which enabled me to support my relationship and everything that it entailed.
Over this year I made the choice to pick up my life on two occasions in order to keep the relationship intact, even though my intuition was screaming that something was not right. I literally gave up who I was and my desire to be congruent in order for this relationship to work, and although this was at no fault of the other person, the choices that I made were fueled by the contradictions that existed in my life. As time progressed, we moved to an extremely small town in Virginia, and although my inner voice was adamantly against this decision, I ignored its presence in fear that the relationship would not survive unless I was physically with the other person. This move was a pivotal experience because I was now living in a place where I did not belong, in a career which represented a contradiction, and in a relationship that was stifling and unfulfilling for both parties. How could the Jared Yellin, who once felt inordinately abundant, feel so alone and empty?
I am here today as a messenger, because what I am about to share is something that I recently learned. The only thing that truly changed in my world was the superficial, and I always had ME, but I was consumed by my perception of my circumstances. I literally was unable to look at myself in the mirror because all that I saw was a giant contradiction. I was once the person who wrote about pursuing their dreams for a career, yet I put my world on hold for an opportunity which was not in alignment with what I am looking to achieve. I was once the person who wrote about love as the most profound emotion, but was in a relationship where it did not truly exist. I was once the person who stressed the importance of nutrition and exercise, yet I was no longer concerned with my personal well-being. I was once the person who was financially balanced and in control of my fiscal life, yet my infatuation within my relationship led to the demise of my bank account because I thought that all of the superficial “THINGS” would substitute for the lack of love. These outside influences dictated my personal level of fulfillment, and as a result, I felt alone and empty. It is so easy to listen to the echoes of the outside world as they influence your decisions, but your intention must be focused on your inner voice and your intuition.
As time went on, something motivated me to reconnect with the company that I was with prior to the private equity deal. I did this with no intention of returning, but rather because I was in dire need of support and guidance from a group of people who played an integral part in my growth. During our first conversation, it became extremely apparent that I had unfinished business and it was time for me to return. Sometimes in life you don’t know what you have until it is lost or until you have a moment of reprieve where you are finally honest with yourself. Simultaneously, the relationship, which was once everything that I thought I wanted, began to fall apart, and it was time for the two of us to go our separate ways.
Therefore, as I sit in a Starbucks in Englewood NJ, I have literally gone 360 degrees in 365 days; living in NJ with my supportive family and friends, with the same incredible company, and ready to be part of this revolution with all of you. This journey has been the most humbling experience of my life because it allowed me to confront everything that I do not know about myself, while forcing me to come to terms with the fact that I am not invincible; actually I am no different than anyone. None of us are…we really are all the same regardless of our wealth, intellect, looks etc. We are all profound individuals, the only difference lies in our ability to listen to our inner voice. My unconscious being was literally screaming at me since January of last year that every decision I was making was not in alignment with what I was looking to achieve in life, but I chose not to listen. Besides sickness or disease, there is no such thing as being blindsided or surprised by what life throws your way because if you were to allow yourself to delve deep into your internal being, the answer would have been apparent the entire time. Whether you go through a difficult breakup, make a poor investment, or take a risk in your career, your intuition will always be there to guide you as long as you allow this voice to be heard.
So 365 days later, I have less money, I am single once again, and I might have “wasted” a year of my business life, but what I gained is something that no money, no time, and no relationship could ever replace…what I gained was awareness, what I gained was a deeper sense of consciousness, and what I gained was genius as to what I still do not know. Therefore, I could not feel more fortunate about the last 365 days of my life and I hope that as we progress together, you will allow me to share these lessons with you.
In closing, here is one of my favorite poems, something that I read years ago as a result of a very special person in my world, something that captures the essence of what I have learned…
The Man in the Glass by Peter “Dale” Winbrow Sr.
When you get what you want in your struggle for self
And the world makes you king for a day,
Just go to the mirror and look at yourself
And see what that man has to say.
For it isn’t your father or mother or wife
Whose judgment upon you must pass.
The fellow whose verdict counts most in your life
Is the one staring back from the glass.
You may be like Jack Horner and chisel a plum
And think you’re a wonderful guy.
But the man in the glass says you’re only a bum
If you can’t look him straight in the eye.
He’s the fellow to please-never mind all the rest,
For he’s with you clear to the end.
And you’ve passed your most dangerous, difficult test
If the man in the glass is your friend.
You may fool the whole world down the pathway of years
And get pats on the back as you pass.
But your final reward will be heartache and tears
If you’ve cheated the man in the glass.
Thank you for all that you do, thank you for supporting and believing in our mission, and thank you for always being YOU!
What does this mean to you? Please leave a comment.
Some pictures from Flickr.