This Is Who I Am
Leaning into Life with Curiosity, Joy, and Love
Hi, I’m Jordan Paris, and there’s something I need to tell you.
When I was a small child, curiosity, joy, and love were the core of my being. It showed in all I said and did, like a light.
But somewhere along the way, that light went out. I lost sight of who I was. As a young teen, I had one friend, I did nothing, and I became depressed.
I got caught up in the flow of life, letting the current take me wherever it wanted me to go. This meant “fitting in” and getting good grades so that I could get a job for 50 years before retiring.
It wasn’t until I was 18 that I would wake up and rediscover who I was. I decided to take control of my life, becoming a creator rather than a victim. Most importantly, I put the pen back in my hand that I could use to author my own story. Society and circumstance were no longer my co-authors.
In the summer of 2016, at age 18, I befriended and became an intern with celebrity personal trainer Steve Jordan, who has trained Tobey Maguire, Arianna Huffington, Jordan Belfort, and so many more. In December of 2016, at age 19, I started this website to serve as a blog site. The next month, I earned my National Academy of Sports Medicine certification to become a personal trainer. A few months later, I had in-person clients and over 70 online clients. In summer of 2017, I started a small web development agency to elevate the branding of small businesses so that they come across as Fortune 500 companies. In September of 2017, I was published in Men’s Health twice, and even two more times over the next few months. In March of 2018, I started the Growth Mindset University podcast. On March 18, 2018, I decided to start writing a book. 29 days later on April 17, after many 10+ hour workdays, I finished writing it. On May 17, 2018, at the age of 20, Growth Mindset University was published and available on Amazon.
All the good in my life has come from curiosity, joy, and love. It took reconnecting to who I was as a child to become who I was created to be. And I’m not done yet–that’s the beauty of growth–I’m never done, I always feel like I’m just getting started.
I believe a rich life is available for all if we reconnect to who we were as children. We were all born into this world innocent, free of scars, fearless, curious, joyful, and loving. This light is inside all of us, so let’s turn the light back on.
CURIOSITY - then & now
I’ve always been overcome by curiosity. Growing up, my favorite movie was Curious George, perhaps because I saw myself in that curious little monkey. I asked my mother countless questions, I had to touch everything (especially things that say do not touch), I loved trying new foods, and I was open to being wrong while not being afraid to say, “I don’t know” because that meant I could learn something new.
Today, I am the same way. I believe that maintaining this child-like innocence is the key to the good life.
The moment we start knowing, we become bored with things because they exist only as names to us. The dry concepts of the mind obscure our direct perception. It’s like watching a movie for the 20th time. So, we must lose our minds to come to our senses. This is the essence of curiosity.
JOY - then & now
Joy is the result of being fully immersed in the moment without worry that the moment will go away or wishing that it will intensify.
You see, craving is the root of suffering. If we do not wish to suffer, we must stop craving. To stop craving, we must experience reality as it is. To experience reality as it is, we should ask ourselves “what am I experiencing right now?” This simple Buddhist practice extinguishes the fire of craving. When this fire is extinguished, it is referred to as nirvana, a state of perfect contentment and serenity, or joy. We are fully immersed in the moment.
However, life comes in waves. Sometimes we’re up, sometimes we’re down. There’s a crest, and a trough. There’s no stopping the waves, so the only thing we can do is learn to surf the waves of life. Still, I find joyful moments even in the deepest valleys of my life.
LOVE - always unconditional
Love is my default mode of expression. I love truly, openly, and freely.
When communicating with all living things, I am reminded of a quote from The Great Gatsby concerning the way Gatsby looked at others: “It was one of those rare smiles with a quality of eternal reassurance in it, that you may come across four or five times in life. It faced–or seemed to face–the whole external world for an instant, and then concentrated on you with an irresistible prejudice in your favor.”
I do my best to give people that eternal reassurance with a big smile, eyes of love, open body language, and honest expression. People need your love, and the more you give, the more you will have, and the more that will be returned to you.
I am Curiosity. I am Joy. I am Love. This is who I am, and I’ll never change who I am, I’ll just grow and build upon who I already am.
I’m grateful that you’ve taken the time to learn about what makes me who I am, and the honor would be entirely mine if we could stay in touch once or twice per week. Let’s surf the waves of life together. What do you say?