Hello. My name is Tony Price.
I’m a black man in my mid-thirties, married to an amazing woman and father of two beautiful little girls. I spent the early portion of my career creating online content before ultimately developing a passion for the world of marketing and advertising. I’m type A. I have an insatiable appetite for information and content. I’m addicted to my phone. I talk fast, walk fast, think fast and work fast.
I’m a guy. I’m to old to be ‘bro’ but to young to be a ‘sir.’ I like BBQ, booze and football of all types; College, Professional, Fantasy and Madden. I think women in Yoga pants is a subtle reminder of God’s greatness all around us. I’m an avid Golfer. I like shows with zombies and movies with guns. I think a fresh cut from the barbershop has the ability to turn Clark Kent into Superman. I think the Jordan XI and XIIs are the greatest shoes ever made. I think loyalty is important. I think reading is essential and I think Meditation might have saved my life.
At this point you might be wondering how I went from all things masculine to meditation. I used to wonder the same thing. I threw the grown man’s checklist into the intro to dispel a popular belief, the belief that men don’t medicate and the men that do are somehow soft.
About two years ago I was off. My career was going well, my marriage was happy and my kids were healthy, but I felt off. I knew I was stressed, but what career-minded adult isn’t? It wasn’t until I started to make mistakes personally and professionally that I realized I needed answers. I didn’t have them, and neither did Sway.
One night after a dinner party one of my wife’s friends suggested meditating as a way of coping with the stress.
Meditation was something that skinny men with pony tails did. I thought the meditation starter kit consisted of a sandals, a ponytail, quinoa and coconut water. What could a meat eating, wife ravishing, modern gladiator like myself gain from sitting Indian Style and chanting ‘om.’
Until one day…
The shit had hit the fan at work. There was an issue and the client wasn’t happy. None of it was my fault, but when your stress levels are at 10, the slightest bit of adversity can feel like an avalanche. There was to be a huge conference call the next day, so the night before I jotted down a list of points I wanted to be certain to make on the call.
I couldn’t sleep at all that night. Stress and Anxiety sang a sweet duet of ‘you ain’t shit’ until the early hours of the morning. Exhausted. Confused and out of ideas. I Googled ‘How to meditate.’ 10 minutes later, I was sitting in the dark on my living room floor, breathing, listening and quieting my mind. That first session lasted an hour, and when I opened my eyes, everything was different.
When I arrived at work I couldn’t find my original page of notes for the conference call so I decided to redo them on a random piece of paper. The call went well, the sky didn’t fall, life went on regularly, until later that day when I found my original notes. The one’s I wrote before I meditated.
My notes before meditation were defensive, argumentative, buck-passing, thin and generally unhelpful.
The notes after meditation.
Positive, optimistic, solution oriented and productive.
In my hands I held two versions of what my mind could produce. I had a tangible comparison of what my loud mind was capable of vs. my quiet mind.
Moment of clarity.
Have you ever played the classic videogame Tetris? You know, the game where the shapes slowly cascade from the top of the screen and the player moves and rotates them into position. The name of the game is to create these neat horizontal lines and if you are successful, the blocks disappear.
The more success you have, the faster the blocks come. You don’t have as much time to plot and plan your moves, the blocks start to stack up on you and before long you are doing everything you can to keep from dying. Life can be like those last moments before you lose in Tetris. Bills, relationships, health, friends, family, career, etc., all coming at you fast. Your wife is angry, your money is funny, you’ve gained some weight and haven’t closed that deal.
Blocks. Falling fast without compassion or consideration.
For me, meditation slows those blocks down. Meditation resets me to the beginning of the game, where I can examine, evaluate and execute moves without the stress overwhelming me.
Meditation makes me calmer. Less irritable, more patient. Less reactive, more introspective.
Life doesn’t stop throwing bricks at you, but meditation has armed me with what I need to defend myself, my mind and my family.
I’m not a guru. I’m certainly not enlightened. I’m a big guy, with a loud personality who strives to have a quiet mind.
I’m here to share.
Share my experiences. Share my perspectives.
Share ideas with men and women who meditate like me and share questions and concerns with those who may be on the fence about meditation.