Have you ever been to Hawaii or overseas?
When I travel I always like to go some where that has a different culture and has a different way of life (compared to the western world) so we can experience and learn from something that is not our own. Hawaii and its culture is exciting because it’s a world where it is so American but at the same time it holds this history and culture of another world which also draws sticking parallels to that of Australian Aboriginal Culture. If you have not been lucky enough to go to Hawaii let me tell you, as soon as you get off that plane everyone is greeting you with ‘Aloha’ and ‘Mahola’ which means thank you. This at times feels cringey, cheesy and superficial I struggled to say it back at times in fear I would be one or all those things. Its something that you must respect though because there are two major industries that keep the Islands going and that’s Tourism and the Military so without this Hawaii may not be what it is today. Then as we got further into the trip and spoke to some Islanders and Hawaiian people we learnt about the Spirit of Aloha and what it truly means.
‘Aloha is one of those intangibles that is hard to define yet one knows when it is being experienced or received. Aloha is recognising the strength and love that you have in another’.
Aloha is love and it connects all the people of the Islands together and to the beautiful landscapes, seas and spirit that surrounds them. Once you have landed in Hawaii people will also start using the phrase ‘Island time’ which is the equivalent of ‘Koorie time’ haha so not only do you get this immediate sense of warmth, welcome and connectedness you also need to slow down, you need to stop and live at the pace that the Islands and its people dictates. This is harder to do in major tourist centres like Waikiki on Oahu but totally present on landing in other cities and Islands like Kona, Hawaii ( The big Island).
Why am I talking to you about this?
because I feel like it creates perspective and allows you to clear the noise you have going on in your life that is competing for your attention. What should our number one priority be, our health, without our health we cannot be there for priority number two, our family/ friends what ever this may look like for you. Our health is more than our physical fitness it is our body, mind and soul. It means we need to be connected and live with the spirit of Aloha. As you have most likely heard time and time again (and probably from me )Humans are not meant to live in the isolated way that has manifested over time and we know that isolation , being isolate, feeling isolated can be an environmental factor that could lead to further problems with your mental health such as Depression and Anxiety or symptoms of which on its own it can be problematic.
Jac, I have never been to Hawaii how can I get this into my life?
One way you can do this is spend some quiet time thinking about a value or this value that Aloha brings and focus only on this for 5 to 10 minutes. Start with some deep breathes then focus on what does this look like in your life, how do you live this, how can you bring this to the people around you? ..guess what ? this is also known as meditating , you don’t have to call it this but you definitely need to schedule some time in your week to do this . Stop, quietened down, clear the noise, reprioritise because I can guarantee you as you grind through life and all its demands your priorities will become muddled and skewed . If you are blessed enough to be able to travel to get these experiences, please do it however you don’t have to have been to this place to take on board its vibe. I hope by reading this you are able to feel and get a sense of the spirit of Aloha but look around you, Australia is one of the most diverse countries in the world by spending some time with one of your brothers or sisters from a different back ground who knows how you could enrich your life. You just need to want to learn and have an open heart. On that note I will leave you with another passage on Aloha. Fear not team my next piece will be more practical based around some solid travel / fitness tips but until then just get comfy with being soulful.
‘Aloha is a recognition of life in another. If there was life there was mana, goodness and wisdom, and if there was goodness and wisdom there was a god quality. One had to recognise the god of life in another before saying aloha, this was easy. Life was everywhere – in the trees, the flowers the ocean the fish the birds the pili grass the rainbow the rock in all the world was life- was god-was aloha.
Helena G Allen- author of, The Betrayal of Liliuokalani
Aloha and Mahalo – Coach Jac.