Excerpt from Chapter Eleven

Manstein – THE INNER GENIUS WITHIN US ALL by Jason Hughes

Excerpt from Chapter Eleven:

Molly and I flew in from Seattle to JFK Airport in New York City
on September 10, 2001. I had to continue on to Connecticut that
night, so I was not in the city when the planes hit the Twin Towers in the
morning. I remember thinking clearly how there was a time in my life when
I could see love in everything that was going on in and around me. These
attacks helped me see this again. The second these planes hit the Towers there
was such an outpouring of love, support, and prayer from all over the world.
Once I got back in the city, I saw and felt this with even more clarity.

I was not really establishing and sustaining myself enough in NYC, and
I had to consider a different job or career other than the few hours of tennis I
was teaching in Queens. Out of fear and the need for a paycheck, I applied for
and accepted a job with a small company that was promoting wellness in various
ways. The salary was pathetically low for maintaining life in the City. I
had to wear a suit when we ventured out to other companies to orchestrate
seminars. When not out doing these, I was in an absurdly small office space for
four people, four desks, four computers, and a whole bunch of clutter everywhere.
There was also a large clock on the wall staring at me, and the seconds
ticked by like they were full days. I lasted a week and a half at this job.

Excerpt from Chapter Ten

Manstein – THE INNER GENIUS WITHIN US ALL by Jason Hughes

Excerpt from Chapter Ten:

I had an overwhelming number of positive and meaningful experiences
with all of my work, new friends, and opportunities in my hometown, it
was surely onward and upward. Or so I thought. I felt like my path, soulship,
and whole relationship with myself was completely intact. I felt I could rise to
any test or challenge life could throw at me and overcome it to keep going forward
as if it was all smooth sailing from here on out.

All of my external relationships were flourishing and growing because
my internal relationship felt balanced, peaceful, and happy. I never wanted to
utter the words, “I think I have had enough of this personal growth and spiritual
stuff,” because I knew my ego would step in and take the helm really fast
if I did. I did not want to sleepwalk or just go through the motions of life ever

Excerpt from Chapter Nine

Manstein – THE INNER GENIUS WITHIN US ALL by Jason Hughes

Excerpt from Chapter Nine:

I was determined to get back to Connecticut and create an opportunity that
would be fulfilling and life changing. I could not abort the Love Train,
and I felt compelled to listen to my calling to get involved and work with the
youth of my hometown.

I went into Old Saybrook Senior High School feeling like a peaceful warrior
ready to make a positive difference. At the same time, I went into the
Youth and Family Services building to see if something was there for me as
well. Both places offered me jobs, friends, and opportunities that changed my
life in profound and deeply meaningful ways. I was following my heart, but
more life experience and purpose than I alone could have ever imagined was
given back to me, and it transcended earning potential.

Excerpt from Chapter Eight

Manstein – THE INNER GENIUS WITHIN US ALL by Jason Hughes

Excerpt from Chapter Eight:

The words love and heart became synonymous in my world, and the
words fear and ego did too. If I allowed fear into my system, my ego
came out, and it was a recipe for disaster, self-induced pain, and heartache. I
was choosing to identify with my heart, while letting the false evidence of fear
be an illusion of my mind. On that note, I left Boston for Vermont.

In a way, I considered myself to be out of my mind going to a place where
the plan was to spend money and earn zero for an undetermined amount of
time. I knew I was taking a risk, but it was worth it. Two of my closest friends
and I decided to start the “Root and Vine Juice Company” in Burlington, Vermont.

The plan was to grow the business enough to get a small-business loan or
investment. We established nearly one hundred accounts (delicatessens, health
food markets, convenience stores, bakeries, sandwich shops, coffee houses, etc.),
and we were clearly labeled the “Juice Guys” of Northern Vermont.We pressed
and made potions of juice like nobody’s business.We made a valiant effort, but
we got squeezed out of business like a Florida orange by the bigger, flash-pasteurized

Excerpt from Chapter Seven

Manstein – THE INNER GENIUS WITHIN US ALL by Jason Hughes

Excerpt from Chapter Seven:

I felt incredibly unique knowing I was not applying for jobs after graduating
from Northeastern University with a Bachelor’s degree in Communication
Studies. I was armed with a piece of paper that could possibly get me
in the door of many entry-level positions at various companies, but that was
toward the back of the line in my mind. I may not have known much at this
point in my life, but I did know that beginning a 5-, 10-, 15-, or 40-year
career at one company was not calling my name.

I had gained some clarity, but I still considered going the overly travelled
path that was all around me. I believe my family perceived my injuries in my
car accident as just related to my physical being and that they did not yet fully
understand how much this whole event shifted and changed my consciousness
and calling in life. I was only listening more and more to this calling, and a job
I was “supposed” to get was not ringing any truth in my ears.

Excerpt from Chapter Six

Manstein – THE INNER GENIUS WITHIN US ALL by Jason Hughes

Excerpt from Chapter Six:

My heart always felt good when it was resting in Connecticut. Home
is where the heart is, and I felt spiritually connected to my hometown.
I was happy to take a job teaching tennis a couple of small towns away
from Old Saybrook. I had several major and meaningful wake-up calls in
Texas while reading and implementing knowledge from the many great books
I wrapped my heart around. It was the beginning of a whole new life as far as
I was concerned, and I wanted a conscious unfolding love story to happen in
every area of my life.

I was very content teaching tennis, exercising, playing tennis, and truly
feeling new spiritual knowledge blooming within me. I clearly wanted more,
and being human, I started to once again look more outside myself than inside.
I knew I had not yet discovered a manual to guide me eternally through life
without making more mistakes (or at least limit them…) or experiencing
growing pains. In a healthy way, I kept my eyes open for more in every area of
my life. At the same time, I was open for change, opportunity, and growth
going forward into a bright future.

Excerpt from Chapter Five

Manstein – THE INNER GENIUS WITHIN US ALL by Jason Hughes

Excerpt from Chapter Five:

When I arrived in Texas, I had my sights set on one goal: to play bigtime
tennis with people from all over the world and for one of the
best teams and coaches in the country. The coach’s office was my first stop. I told
him my previous rankings and asked if I could hit with the team as soon as possible.
He looked up my previous rankings and told me to come out so he could
watch me play. After watching me play, he told me I could keep coming to practice.
That is all I wanted to hear. It was a dream come true for me, and I was
not taking this opportunity for granted this time around.

I was ecstatic about having clarity in my life: play tennis and pursue this
burning desire to figure out my internal life. Answers really did start to fall
out of the sky in Tyler, Texas. I never spent a whole lot of time in bookstores,
but one day I felt a magnetic pull to go into a bookstore right across the street
from my apartment. I accepted these feelings, urges, magnetic pulls, and new
matters of my heart as very real and filled with purpose. I felt they were
directly meant for me to capture and seize opportunities to explore. I was
becoming so open about getting in touch with my internal life. I was immediately
drawn to the “Spirituality” or “Self-Help” sections of the store.

Excerpt from Chapter Four

Manstein – THE INNER GENIUS WITHIN US ALL by Jason Hughes

Excerpt from Chapter Four:

It was not until I discovered the word “spirituality” that I thought about
the word “love” on such a grand scale. I knew I loved my immediate and
extended family including my Gramps (my father’s father), close friends
including Kubby, my dogs, and tennis. I became aware mine was a limited
love, but the world of spirituality opened it all up. It all started with self-love
and self-exploration from the inside out.

I discovered a limitless love in spirituality. And, I immediately felt it was
limitless to what I could gain in bringing this more and more into my life. I
wanted to completely grieve the loss of Kubby, and I knew this was going to be
the way. I wanted to turn this loss into an incredibly loving experience, because
I could feel that Kubby and I were closer than ever. It was a true love beyond
worldly description. I was conscious of a new force of love living through me
after my near-death experience, but I had no idea what to do with it or how to
express it.

Excerpt from Chapter Three

Manstein – THE INNER GENIUS WITHIN US ALL by Jason Hughes

Excerpt from Chapter Three:

Ineeded to deal with my struggles around loss and internal feelings, callings,
and strife, yet I did not know where to even begin dealing with it
all. I truly felt as if I had grieved the loss of Kubby to the best of my ability up
to this point. I didn’t know how to gain perspective and turn this loss and whole
event into something positive before I learned more about what was happening

One place I did NOT turn to was God. I did not know what God was,
except for something outside of me that so many others went to worship on a
Sunday, in fancy clothes and at a church. I was not one of those people, and I
was thankful my parents did not push organized religion on me in my early

I may have experienced a powerful moment with my therapist in high
school regarding going forward with my life and living for my dreams, but this
was all overshadowed by the pressures and limited knowledge I had going into
college. As much as I returned to fitting in, going through the motions, and
identifying with myself as just a freshmen at Green Mountain College, the
hurt inside continued to grow.

The Best Day of Your Life

I have often asked the question, “Tell me about the best day of your life?” It is interesting to see where many eyes go, where their mind goes, and what their response is…as it is often rooted in the past or some future event or place that has not even happened yet! They say, “…the best day of my life was when I got my license, graduated, went to college, got my first job, got a promotion, gave birth to my baby, bought a house, quit my job, and on and on and on. Or, they say, “…the best day of my life will be when I win the lottery, go on vacation, get that promotion, quit my job, get married, can afford to buy a house, and on and on and on. These are all valid responses to my trick question, and all of these moments sounds amazing and miraculous, but all of them have already happened or have not even become a realistic possibility. The people who immediately respond, “Today is the best day of my life!” They are the ones that are living life to the fullest, and accepting the present moment as it is right now. They are not resisting against what is, and they are seeing “green grass” everywhere they look, because they know in their heart that the grass is as green as it is going to get right here at home. Quite simply, today will always be the best day of our lives and there is no other way it can be. Make the best of it, and create this day with wise choices and positive thoughts. And always listen to your heart. Enjoy the day!