Zach Holz

Zach Holz

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I am a baby when it comes to meditation. I’m not a guru, I haven’t been to an ashram and I’m not a member of a contemplative Eastern religion.  What I am is a person who has struggled with sleep for well over a decade and didn’t even really know why until I started regularly doing guided meditations.   By day, I’m a teacher. I teach middle school English and my day starts ferociously early.  I’m...

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When it comes to making decisions, we like to think that our rational, logical mind is in control of what we do.  Unfortunately, for most of us, our rational mind is rather like a man sitting on top of an elephant. The elephant is emotion. The little man, the logical chunk of our brain, can tug and pull on the ears of the elephant of emotion, but that elephant is vastly stronger than the little...

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Is there anything more manly than a vast char-grilled steak fresh off the grill with a pat of butter melting on top? Maybe bacon. How about barreling down the road at breakneck speed in a big, loud, shiny car? I constantly feel pressured by society, advertisements and the media (social or otherwise) to behave in this way, which is not only destructive but wasteful too – and particularly so when it comes to food, leisure...

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I have a dear friend who is a musician. He comes alive on stage and has loved it for nearly his whole life. But being a professional musician, for the vast majority, is a tough gig. There are far more talented people than there are jobs for them that pay a living wage. (For the record, I am also a musician, but love teaching full time and make time to play in a band on the...

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A year ago, I set myself a challenge: Go the whole month without ordering food or going out to eat more than once a week. I was able to complete this challenge, but I did not like it. I felt constrained, anxious and antisocial. And I was sick of doing dishes.  But the important thing is that I made it and I realized I could mentally cope with producing all my own food. However when...

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Veganism, exercise, sobriety. They all seem like the negation of experience, the rejection of pleasure. No more can you have gooey cheeses and fat-dripping meats or lie about all day in indolence and decadence with numbing chemicals carrying you away from the pressures of life. All of that is cast aside in favor of clean. Clean food, clean actions, clean chemicals, clean living. I’ve come a long way on this journey, from where I was...

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Have you ever heard the expression “live simply, so others may simply live”?   For the stereotypical UAE resident, that idea may be quite far from the reality of their luxury lifestyle. However, as we learn through almost daily apocalyptic headlines about the impact of climate change, if we don’t change the way we live to be more environmentally friendly, we might not have any chance of living at all in a few decades.   Fortunately, living...

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The other day I was sitting down with the other board members of a local personal finance group, SimplyFI.   Health and body weight had been weighing heavily on my mind, and when I looked around at the other financially astute members, I noticed one striking commonality: They were all thin. Several of them have already accrued enough wealth that they never have to work again — they’re what we call “financially independent” — but you...