Several months ago, I decided to give up coffee. It was a simple decision; it just felt right, and I gave it up cold turkey. Here’s the “behind the scenes” story of that decision.

From a moment of clarity and a high level of awareness, I made a choice to modify what I put in my body (no coffee). I don’t know where the idea came from—it suddenly appeared, felt right, and I acted. I didn’t contemplate it; I didn’t write a list of pros and cons; I didn’t evaluate the financial consequences. I didn’t consider any of the consequences. I simply woke up one day and decided to change. For some reason, I trusted myself, my gut, and my instincts.

In contrast to how I had lived for more than four decades, I didn’t muster up all my willpower to consciously avoid coffee. I didn’t manage my self-talk or give myself morning-time locker room speeches. I didn’t write and read daily affirmations supporting my decision to avoid coffee. I didn’t quit going to coffee shops for meetings. In fact, I still went to the same coffee shop but bought a kale lemonade instead of coffee.

There is no causal link between my circumstances (coffee consumption) and my mood, state of mind, or level of energy. Rather, my moment-to-moment thinking is the source of my state of mind and internal feelings. If my head is crammed with thoughts, my mind-set is low and my feelings are off. Conversely, when my head is clear, life proceeds and decisions (giving up coffee) feel appropriate. This is how all people create life experience—from the inside-out.


As my understanding of the inside-out reality increases, my life is undoubtedly full of more spontaneity and freedom. Of course, I have moments when my head is filled with thought and the feelings in my stomach are all bound up, but now I no longer look outside of myself for relief. I understand the source of all of my feelings is my moment-to-moment thinking. Thankfully, the experience of a bound-up stomach and the accompanying anxiety is far less than I ever imagined.

Perhaps, this is the mental freedom I have been chasing all of my life.
Perhaps, this is how we are all meant to live.