Tag Archive | "Robbie Vorhaus"

Sag Harbor Author Writes Guidebook to Following Your Heart

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Robbie Vorhaus, author of “One Less. One More. Follow Your Heart. Be Happy. Change Slowly.” Photo by Mara Certic.

By Mara Certic

Robbie Vorhaus has it figured out. Commit to follow your heart regardless of where your head tries to take you, and you will be happy. Mr. Vorhaus has outlined this simple formula for arriving at your destination and achieving your purpose in life in his new book, “One Less. One More. Follow Your Heart. Be Happy. Change Slowly.”

“Every human being wants to follow their heart. That’s why I wrote the book, is because I’ve always wanted to follow my heart,” Mr. Vorhaus said. “I’ve constantly looked for books on following my heart. But nothing ever addressed following my heart because it’s so personal,” he said.

After years of thumbing through a plethora of self-help, New Age and spiritual books, Mr. Vorhaus said he never found the guidebook to happiness that he needed. So he wrote it.

“Happiness is a funny word,” he said. “It’s not something you do, it’s a way of being. We’re here to be, to express and to experience.”

Mr. Vorhaus worked for years as an advisor to the rich and famous, during which time he realized what happy clients had in common. “The people who were the most fulfilled, who had the best attitude in life,” he said, “the ones who were the best adjusted were those who pursued the path of following their hearts. Which meant looking to uncover their authenticity: why are we here? Which is a big question.”

The concept behind the book, Mr. Vorhaus said, came right out of Sag Harbor. In the winter of 2007, a local mother called Mr. Vorhaus’s wife, Candace, after seeing him on CNN as a contributor. The woman was going through a difficult time and wanted to know how to be less stressed and how to be happier. In response, Mr. Vorhaus wrote a column in The Sag Harbor Express explaining his mantra of one less and one more.

One less, he explained, represents a decision to eliminate a negative element from your life. One more is about actively choosing to add one positive thing to your life every day. If one adds something positive and eliminates something negative each day, that day becomes a bit happier and another step to achieving one’s purpose, he said. After his column was printed, Mr. Vorhaus started getting notes from around the world, he said. “So it started right here,” he said in the Express offices on Friday.

Peppered with stories of his life and those of people he has encountered professionally, Mr. Vorhaus outlines the seven simple steps to finding your heart’s desire in his new book.

Step one: Start now. “Make the conscious decision today that you are going to consider following your heart and being happy. You have to start now,” he said. Putting the decision off, he said, “is allowing your head to take you off the path that you’re already open to.”

The next step is to come present, then to consciously choose to follow your heart and to change slowly. After that, Mr. Vorhaus advises choosing one negative, resistant thought feeling or action to eliminate. Something in your life that doesn’t fit, he said. It can have to do with finances, sex, love, fitness, health, he said. But it has to stop.

Then choose one more. Choose to embrace a positive feeling or action, he said. “Allow yourself the luxury of curiosity, the luxury of quiet, laughter and passion,” he said. Mr. Vorhaus believes that every human being has something pulling them, and by consciously making these choices, people alter the course of the universe.

The last two steps are to celebrate your progress and then do it all over again the next day and the day after and so on.

A simple formula, but one Mr. Vorhaus acknowledges is not for everyone. “If you want to consider that there is a greater purpose, you have to believe it,” he said. “You have to prepare, you have to start getting ready.”

“It’s all a theory until you try it,” Mr. Vorhaus said, who described his book as a handbook on the path of life. The magic formula won’t be easy, he said.

“Nothing moves until you commit. You have to be ready to raise the stakes. Once you commit the world changes. People will be against you, people will be afraid,” he said.

“There comes a point where you’re going to have to go all in. If you really want to give it your all, you have to go all in. Once you go all in, you’re going to experience some sort of crisis. You cannot follow your heart without some part of you dying,” he said.

By this he means your ego, or other demons that hold you back from your true purpose. Mr. Vorhaus advises people to let go of blame and have more accountability. “Your life is your life,” he said. “Do less of what doesn’t feel good, and more of what does.”

The Sag Harbor Express will host an evening with Mr. Vorhaus at Bay Street Theater on Thursday, October 16. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the author’s talk will begin at 7:30 p.m. A Q&A will follow. Mr. Vorhaus will sign books before and after his talk. Admission is $10 and the book will be on sale for $25. For more information about the book visit vorhaus.com.

Sag Harbor Village and School Officials Make Strides to Improve Drop-Off Situation at Pierson

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Pierson Middle-High School in Sag Harbor.

Pierson Middle-High School in Sag Harbor.

By Tessa Raebeck

The Sag Harbor Village Police Department and administrators at Pierson Middle-High School have teamed together to address the pick-up and drop-off problems at the school and, after years of confusion, congestion and concerns over safety, administrators say the issue has been resolved.

“Things are going—I think they’re going much better,” Pierson Principal Jeff Nichols said Wednesday.

Parents contacted The Sag Harbor Express in January voicing fears that the lack of organization on the Division Street side of Pierson Middle-High School during the morning drop-off and afternoon pick-up of students, with the haphazard movement of children and cars, would result in an inevitable accident.

In March, the Board of Education hosted a traffic safety workshop, inviting community members, village officials and Police Chief Tom Fabiano to brainstorm a collaborative solution.

At that meeting, Chief Fabiano said he would have to discuss the possibility of adding a village crossing guard with the village board in September. It appears, however, that process was expedited, as the village has appointed Kathy Carlozzi to monitor the situation.

Ms. Carlozzi is present along the entrance to the Division Street parking lot from 7 to 7:30 a.m. and from roughly 2:10 to 2:35 p.m., according to Mr. Nichols.

In the morning, two members of Pierson’s custodial department are stationed along the bus drop-off zone on Division Street from 7 to 7:30 a.m.

School security guard John Ali, formerly the only person officially manning drop-off and pick-up, remains in the Division Street lot “moving traffic along in there as he always has,” Mr. Nichols said.

On the opposite side of the school at the Jermain Street lot, Steve McLoughlin, the security guard from Sag Harbor Elementary School, is stationed facilitating drop-off from 7 to 7:35 a.m.

Mr. Nichols said roughly between 25 and 35 vehicles utilize that side of the building and a monitor supervises the Jermain Street entrance between 7 and 7:30 a.m., after which it is locked.

For those who park along Montauk Avenue, the school has opened up that back entrance, which allows students to enter through the cafeteria. It is supervised by the cafeteria staff between 7 and 7:30 a.m. and likewise locked afterwards, with the primary entrance on Division Street being the only accessible way to enter the school during the day.

“I think probably the biggest help,” Mr. Nichols said, “has been discouraging a left hand turn into the Division lot. And that’s been done by Kathy Carlozzi putting cones out and not allowing people to make that left hand turn.”

“So, doing that has encouraged a one-way flow of traffic, which has encouraged parents to utilize the bus drop-off zone after the buses leave,” he added.

“Any time you add Kathy Carlozzi to the mix, the situation always gets better,” said Robbie Vorhaus, a parent in the district.

“There are lots of things to do, but I certainly feel grateful to the school and to the police for taking a step in the right direction,” he added.

Sag Harbor Parents Express Safety Concerns Over Pick up and Drop off at Pierson Middle/High School

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By Tessa Raebeck

Last Friday afternoon at the end of the school day, Dr. Carl Bonuso was on Division Street waiting to make a left turn into the Pierson Middle/High School parking lot, with his left signal blinking. A Mini Cooper came behind him, swerved to the left and illegally passed Dr. Bonuso, interim superintendent of the Sag Harbor School District.

Several Pierson parents have expressed concern over such incidents during pick up and drop off at the school’s southern entrance, saying poor design, lack of supervising personnel and drivers’ rush to get kids to school combine for a haphazard and potentially dangerous scenario.

“I’m a parent, not an expert,” said Robbie Vorhaus, who has had two children attend Pierson — one is now in college and the other is still a student at the school. “But I’m still very much aware of the fact that there is a very flagrant potential safety hazard that’s been going on for a long time. And it would seem as though the police department would want to work with the school to prevent something horrible from happening.”

During the morning drop off, parents circle around the Division Street parking lot loop, dropping kids off at a curb by the entrance. Principal Jeff Nichols and other administrators are often present to move traffic along the curb.

John Ali, a Pierson security officer, monitors the buses and is positioned at the Marsden Street intersection in the afternoon. The buses park south of the intersection on Division Street and exit down Marsden Street. Cars line up down Marsden Street, despite a No Standing sign, and up and down Division Street.

During the morning, drivers pull around the loop to drop their kids off; cars approach the parking lot entrance from all directions. The four-way traffic created by the intersection is about 20 feet from the three-way traffic created by the lot entrance.

“There are different problems in the morning than in the afternoon,” Vorhaus said.

In the afternoon, students must find the car picking them up. If it hasn’t yet pulled into the loop, kids often go down the road in search of it.

On Friday afternoon, in addition to directing the intersection, there were students to be monitored. On the loop, a student on a razor scooter had to be directed to stay out of the road. A girl in a red jacket ran across the street, dropping a cup in the middle of the road and stooping to pick it up. During both pick up and drop off, which lasts about 20 minutes each, several cars ran the three stop signs at the Marsden Street intersection.

“It was absolute mayhem there today,” Vorhaus said Tuesday, speaking of the afternoon pick up, which came early due to inclement weather. “With the snow and the early pick up, there were more people and there was nobody there [aside from Ali]. There was no other public safety officer anywhere to be seen.”

Dr. Bonuso said Monday the school is hoping to implement several practical safety changes when the parking lots are renovated as part of the district bond capital projects.

“We’ve also in our school and community meetings talked about the details regarding the design for the parking lot,” he said Tuesday. “One of the things we’re tossing around is whether or not we could expand that curb length, so that people could pull up much further and [thus] not have as much of a line of people spilling out into the street.”

“And of course,” he added, “we also welcome working with and partnering with the village.”

“The answer is,” Vorhaus said Tuesday, “that the police department — as in any other community — works in cooperation with the school and puts either a patrol officer or a safety officer, certainly, at the corner of Division and Jermain.”

Although that intersection is priority, Vorhaus would also like to see a second officer at the northern intersection of Division Street and Marsden Street, especially during pick up.

Dr. Bonuso said he would welcome it if the village’s traffic experts spoke with the district’s architecture firm, BBS Architecture, “to get a sense of traffic flow and what the best design is both from the school’s perspective and the village’s perspective. We absolutely welcome having both the village and school share as much information and expertise as is available.”

“Honestly, I think that’s a school issue,” Sag Harbor Village Mayor Brian Gilbride said Tuesday, adding that he sometimes accompanies his son to drop off his grandson.

Mayor Gilbride said there is a Traffic Control Officer (TCO) at the Sag Harbor Elementary School’s Route 114 entrance “who does an excellent job.”

Sag Harbor Police Chief Tom Fabiano said Tuesday he could not comment because he is unaware of the problem, but anyone with concerns should come to him to discuss a possible solution.