My first encounter with the Holstee Manifesto was December 2011. My family was gathered, sitting together opening Christmas presents. My boyfriend Colin handed me an unusual gift: tube-shaped, carefully wrapped in colorful paper. I tore the paper away, uncapped the top, and unrolled the contents to find the words of the Holstee Manifesto. Boom. The past few years have felt like a huge struggle in many ways. Since college, and perhaps quite honestly before and during, I have been wrestling with the idea of where I belong, what I should be doing with myself, how I can exist with intention, where I can feel most meaningful, what choices I should be making and how they affect my world, my community, myself. Big questions yet despite constant pondering, surprisingly evasive answers. I found myself walking in circles in terms of purpose. I knew the things that I liked to do, but I didn’t know how to live a life that included them, that centered around our need to create and enjoy. I wanted to exist in a world that treated our individuality as intricately necessary rather than merely considering those aspects secondary to earning a paycheck. Colin, being one of the closest people in my life during this time, surely knew and understood my dilemma from the inside out. His discovery of the Manifesto, and his gift of it to me, truly confirmed not only his sincere awareness, but his faith in the fact that there was something more. I have, since that day, never felt more encouraged, never felt more assured knowing that there are other people in the world who have the same vision and the same hope. And so, through the person who taught me that real love is possible, I was introduced to a company and a philosophy that insists that a real and fulfilling life is possible, is necessary, is here before us, if you dare to explore it.

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