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Accepting All Aspects of Me

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This talk is about finding courage and living a courageous life. Jaymin Patel speaks about the effects of losing his courage and the many reasons for the loss. He describes an event he attended in a desert full of people practicing “These rules of radical self-expressionism and radical acceptance.” Feeling very much at home, Jaymin had an urge to push the edge. In this talk, you’ll discover exactly how he did that. A courageous relationship left Jaymin “More free than I've ever felt before.” He talks about the many brave choices he’s made throughout his life after that and how “I have the courage and the audacity to believe that everything is possible.”

Jaymin Patel

Jaymin Patel is a growth coach and soul mentor for high-achievers, business owners, spiritual leaders, and celebrated artists.

His mission is to help soul-aligned leaders to unlock their greatest achievement potential and experience the highest levels of freedom and truth—bringing more abundance in health, wealth, and love.

A TEDx speaker and author of eight books, Jayshine has been hired by powerful leaders in the spiritual and transformational communities as well as leaders of corporations like Kraft, Unilever, and Citibank.

I'm in the desert, scantily clad and a beautiful piece of cloth wrapped around me, adorned in jewels and bindis. Now, mind you, this isn't my usual attire. You'd usually find me in a business suit, walking into offices of CEOs as a management consultant, giving them advice on what to do. But this isn't any desert. It's Burning Man. And it's the first night of my first burn, and I've lost my friends. And I'm in this world of strangers and lights who are practicing these rules of radical self-expressionism and radical acceptance.

And in that place, I'm just lost with how at home I feel. And I feel this urge, both a physical urge and an emotional urge, to push the edge. You see, I had to pee, but I don't wanna go and find a bathroom and leave this behind. I'm almost wondering if this is a place for radical self-acceptance. "I should just pee right here." And I begin to think, What if someone points at me or tackles me, or the cops come out, or a helicopter comes out with a spotlight on me. And I begin to think, I wanna know how much me can I be here, and still be accepted. So I pull over a little piece of this loin cloth that I'm wearing, raise my hands up to the air, yell out a loud scream and just begin to pee right there in the middle of the playa.

And courage was born inside me again. You see, I lost my courage very early in life. You can say it was yelled and beaten out of me by my parents. You can say it was strangled out of me by cultural expectations, religion, and society. You can say it was washed from me slowly from eighteen years of school. And I found myself as an adult without much courage, living a very mediocre life. Of course, it didn't look that way to others. I had a beautiful high-paying six-figure job and a condo in downtown that was part of the Parade of Homes and my dream car. And everyone said, "You're doing it," but I knew it was mediocre. I had also succumbed so much to being the good boy, to doing all of the things that lacked courage, that I had actually taken a vow of celibacy blocking out those things which today I use so much—love, connection, pleasure, bliss—all so I could be the perfect virgin husband for my perfect virgin wife that my family would arrange a perfect marriage for me to be in.

But it didn't turn out that way. I'm in bed in a room in the dark with a naked man beside me. And in this moment, I'm feeling more free than I've ever felt before. And I feel so much energy moving through me, through the room, through us, and something comes over me. You see, I met Corey in Cleveland, Ohio. He's a twenty-two-year-old white boy from Texas that I met on a night out with my coworkers at work who wanted to go out to the gay bars. And I said, "Sure, let's do it." And at first, I didn't think much of him, but as the night went on, something happened that I felt this deep desire to take care of this man. Maybe be taken care of by him as well, but to love him and to just be there for him.

And inextricably, not knowing what was pulling me, I found myself knocking on his door to borrow a drill just so I can hang out with him. And over time, our connection got deeper and deeper. We began spending so much of our time together. We even began traveling together, and it was in Peru where everything came to a head, and he said to me, "Jaymin, I want you to be my boyfriend."I could just feel the looming dooming feeling of judgment and finger-pointing and all of this. I don't know. Ugh. It's too much to think about. But another part of me felt really brave, and some courage lit up, and I felt more alive in me than ever before. And without worrying about what this meant about me and who I was or what all this is, I just said yes to him. And so we're here in bed in the dark, laying together. And before I can even think fully, some of the most truest words I've ever said just fall outta my mouth into this dark void. And I say to him, "I love you, man." And in this timelessness, I heard a voice come back from the other side of the universe, and from within me, and from his mouth all simultaneously saying, "I love you too, dude."

And I felt more free and alive in that moment. You could feel the courage break apart all the walls around my heart that held me back to all the things I wanted most. And in this brave moment, I let it all in, and it changed my life. I've had many choice points throughout my beautiful life that I'm so grateful for, which have asked me to be courageous. I left my corporate job and started to become an entrepreneur that led me to incredible success beyond anything that I could imagine for myself. I had the courage to marry the woman of my dreams, even though it meant my mom not talking to me for five years and never meeting her grandchildren. It gave me the courage to show up when my second son was being born in an emergency situation where no one could get to us, and we couldn't get to anyone. And I had to look at my wife and just say, "Baby, push," and catch this baby as it came into this world. It gave me the courage to leave behind everything that was keeping me in mediocre shackles and come here to Bali, halfway around the world, where I live with my wife and my kids and our dog. And we live courageously every day.

I can't imagine a life without courage because of these moments that have cultivated the courage inside me even though it was my normal for so long. I can't imagine a life that I'm living that other people think is great, but I know is mediocre. After cultivating this courage inside and committing to living it every day, I can only live a life that is fully lived. A life where I allow miracles to happen every day, and I have the courage and the audacity to believe that everything is possible.

Thank you.


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