Tag Archives: memoirs

GYST #30: Be a Badass Everyday

Want to empower yourself by being a Badass every single day? Then check-out my 50 Rules of Badassery and add more positivity into your life. This is also the final episode of my Get Your S#!T Together podcast, so thanks for listening everyone, and we’ll see you next time! Peace – R

Forgettabout “I used to”

I can’t tell you how many times I hear this phrase every week about how this guy or that gal used to be in great shape, or used to walk 5 miles with their dogs every morning, or used to bike to work every day, or used to eat healthy with their fruits and vegetables, or blah-blah-blah.

Forgettabout it!

Rich Tola

Rich Tola

Like the forty-something year-old guy I met at the gym this morning who said, “I used to workout all the time and just last month I weighed 190, and now I weight 204.” That’s when I said, “The only thing that matters is your workout this morning and what you put in your mouth today – not what you used to do or even what you did yesterday. It just doesn’t matter.” Then I told him if he was really serious about taking care of himself, like he was – and did – in the past, he could easily get his weight below 200 pounds by Labor Day, and the rest by Halloween…or worst case Thanksgiving.

That’s right, because when it comes to health and fitness, whatever follows that infamous phrase, “I used to”, just doesn’t matter. You’ve got to be vigilant with yourself every day and not rest on your laurels of yester-year! Which is also par for the course when it comes to dating and even your net-worth (believe me, I know). What matters most is your positive attitude and self-respect and discipline today, i.e., live in the present and not the past.

So forgettabout the I used to’s and keep rockin’ it every day!

Enjoy – R

PS – hear all about all what “I used to” do in my heartfelt memoir, Simply Between Millions

Do it Your Way

As part of my book event on August 1st, Mystic Journey Bookstore invited me to contribute to their blog and specifically called it “a personal message from you to our readers”.

Simply put, my message is this: Do it Your Way.

Rich TolaNo matter what conventional wisdom holds, and no matter what others believe you can and can not do. It doesn’t matter – you’re the only one that matters when it comes to what you believe is possible. Not to mention what you put in your mouth and what you do to preserve your body every day, i.e., diet and exercise. Which happens to be the exact same message you’ll get from my memoir, Simply Between Millions: From Wall Street to Hollywood.

It’s 69 short and witty chapters about following the herd and living a wild and colorful life – with Wall Street excesses, exotic locales and scores of bad-boy romances with NYC strippers and wealthy married women. Then finding the peace and courage through Yoga to finally change my evil ways, evolve my soul, and follow my dreams to Hollywood.

Because anyone can change…if you believe you can and want it bad enough to confidently set your sights and try. Just like the women and children living in domestic violence shelters where we teach the benefits of Yoga. Upon completion of my film, Boulevard Zen, I founded The Boulevard Zen Foundation to bring the powers of Yoga to families overcoming adversity, specifically survivors of DV. So in 2005, after 20 years of wanting to change my lifestyle and really go for it on that daunting ‘Boulevard of Broken Dreams’, I became enamored with this 6,000 year-old mind-body-spirit practice that truly changed my life. Two years later I bought a one-way ticket to LA and never looked back.Rich Tola (Age 8)

I also went bust along the way. But did I fail? On the contrary, I succeeded in following my dreams and I’m still standing. Happily I might add, with a film, a self-published book in paperback, digital and audio (narrated by me), and more than 15 hours of instructional Yoga videos on the market. Not too bad for a poor Sicilian kid from Trenton, NJ who overcame the odds and went on to graduate from the Wharton and Kellogg business schools with no particular background in the Arts.

So anything is possible, wouldn’t you say? Just Do it Your Way.

Hope to see you there! – R
RichTolaBookTalk

Kick Him to the Curb

These five simple yet powerful words are meant to help ANY woman who’s being abused by a significant other and doesn’t believe she has the wherewith-all or courage to do something about it.

Case in point: A few months ago I had just returned to Hollywood when I met this really sweet thirty-something year-old gal who had been living with her lazy, no-good boyfriend for the past 5 years. And I say lazy, no-good because not only does this scumbag mentally and emotionally abuse my friend, but this disrespectful low-life doesn’t pay rent, doesn’t hold a steady job, doesn’t look for work, doesn’t cook or clean or help with chores around the apartment, doesn’t help pay for groceries, and doesn’t own a car but always uses hers. Now I would call that a blood-sucking disrespectful low-life, wouldn’t you? The good news is she doesn’t own anything with him nor do they have children together.

Yesterday I had coffee with her and specifically asked why she still supports this abusive scumbag considering she has ALL the power in the relationship, which by the way, has her looking like she’s suffering from Anorexia nervosa. She meekly said, “He’s not so bad, you know, and even if I wanted, I wouldn’t know how to get him out.” My advice was these five simple words – KICK HIM TO THE CURB. She just looked at me like I was crazy until I said, “It’s really simple if you have the courage to end it – and here are three ways you can do it: 1) tell your landlord you’re being abused by your live-in boyfriend and you need to move out, then pack up all your things when he’s not there and hire a few very large men to help you move everything into a storage unit and go live with your parents or your best friend; 2) on your way out the door tomorrow morning tell your boyfriend he’s got until 5pm to vacate the premises and never return again, at which point you’ll be returning with the police (or other suitable protection) and a restraining order against him; or 3) pack-up all his belongings when he’s not there and leave them on the porch with a note saying if he comes within 100 yards of you or your apartment ever again, you’ll have him arrested (and go directly to the authorities for that restraining order).

Anyone who’s familiar with my charity, The Boulevard Zen Foundation, knows that I’m passionate about changing the lives of women and children living in domestic violence shelters. And not just with a daily fitness program that’s based on Yoga, but with a self-respecting and open-hearted approach to life that starts with loving yourself and never letting anyone abuse you in any way, shape or form.

Know that ALL abusers are the weak ones, and know that ANYONE can find the courage to seek help from domestic violence organizations and shelters that are there for you.

Be strong and KICK HIM TO THE CURB – you can do it!

As for that scumbag boyfriend of yours – or anyone else abusing any man, woman or child – really look at yourself in the mirror and commit to changing your evil ways – you can do it! And you can start by reading my memoir, Simply Between Millions: From Wall Street to Hollywood, where a portion of all sales goes to support my charity and our Yoga teachers.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING Everyone! – R

PS – Don’t forget to get your workout in!

Signed Memoirs & Streets of Manhattan

Come visit me on the streets of Manhattan where I’ll be signing copies of my sexy new memoir, Simply Between Millions: From Wall Street to Hollywood.

Locations include Wall Street – near the Whitehall subway stop, Union Square, Bryant Park and Central Park, and of course, the 15-acre lush, green pasture best known as Sheep Meadow.

I’ll be posting NYC and local happenings to my Facebook and Twitter, so follow me and come on by!

And don’t forget your daily workout today…enjoy! – R

Memoirs – Coming Soon!

After two months of trying to attract the right publisher – or any publisher for that matter – I’ve decided to take the plunge! That is, take the plunge into self-publishing my memoirs with Amazon’s independent publishing company, CreateSpace. And I must say, thus far I’m quite pleased with the process and my CreateSpace team. By the looks of it, the book will be available in late January, and to say the least, I’m really looking forward to it. And for anyone not familiar with my 45 years of rather colorful stories, here’s a preview of Chapters 11-20 in, Simply Between Millions: From Wall Street to Hollywood.

At age nine I watched the 1969 classic, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. From that point on, I became fascinated with Hollywood’s “world of make-believe”. So Chapter 11, Hole-in-the-Wall Gang, is aptly named after Robert Redford’s gang of bank robbers, and sets the stage for my dreams of becoming “the Sundance Kid”. Chapter 12, The Belt, touches upon the cycle of domestic violence and the abusive grandfather I never knew and met only once, while Chapters 13 – 15, All-Stars, Going to PENN, and Just Say No, explain my early teenage years and how baseball and my parents’ “Sicilian parenting” impacted my life and set the stage for the next 30 years. In Chapter 16, Sweet 16, I unofficially become of legal drinking age and recall my not-so-virginal romance with a gal stricken with Anorexia Nervosa – a horrible disorder that rears its nasty head time and time again (as well as in my film, Boulevard Zen). Chapter 17, Jersey Shore, is quite amusing with tales of adolescent debauchery that I’m sure you’ve seen on the popular reality show of the same name, albeit, without the scripts and cameras! In Chapter 18, The Game, you’ll experience the best High School baseball game of all-time – all 20 innings worth, while Chapter 19, Dear Olde PENN, introduces you to one of the best colleges in the world, The University of Pennsylvania, as well as the gritty bars of Philadelphia in the early 80’s. As for Chapter 20, Two Minute Drill, no, it’s not about the final two minutes of a football game. Rather, imagine what it’s like drinking 8 beers in 2 minutes, and then imagine what it’s like seeing 400+ wild and crazy gals hooting it up at the hottest Ladies Club in town – with your best friend as the lead attraction!

Good stuff that makes for some fun reading! So, like I said earlier, I’m really looking forward to self-publishing my colorful memoirs in the coming months. I hope you are too. Have a wonderful day – and don’t forget to get your workout in! – R