Embrace the Pause

It’s easy to feel good about things, and positive and optimistic about one’s future when things are going well. But it’s a whole heck of a lot harder to do that when we go into a dip in the proverbial roller coaster. I like to call this phase the Pause.

Just like the ocean, life moves in ebbs and flows. During those times when things feel slow, or I am tired and every step I take feels like I am mired in quicksand and my goals aren’t progressing, I can be really hard on myself. And we all know that these times can last for weeks or even longer.

Although it certainly always hasn’t been the case, lately when I find myself in the throes of a Pause, I’ve been really trying hard to simply embrace it and let myself rest, maybe taking that drive up the coast for a few days, refilling my cup. I also trust that things are moving behind the scenes and that this break or permission to take a vacation or a day off will ultimately get me headed in the right direction, giving me the energy and stronger intuitive channels to find myself back in the flow. 

I feel like we are given these pauses to provide us the opportunity to grow and release things that no longer serve us. But we have to be willing to do that. It’s human nature to push through or “numb” the Pause.  We do all kinds of things to avoid it: shopping therapy, look for someone else to make us happy or validate us, spend too much time on social media, or spin our wheels while trying to work through it.

Usually, I have tried to “work through” or stay busy when I feel a wave of sadness or confusion come over me.  But as I become more aware, I will consciously slow down and sit with it.  Believe me when I say it’s not easy, one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do is give myself permission to just do nothing for a few days or a week, but if we can just sit with it and allow it to pass, instead of trying to push through it and keep it buried, that is when the magic happens.  Giving us permission to pause, to not work through it, allowing time to breathe, and giving our intuition a chance to reveal our next step instead of fearfully trying to force it. When I do honor my feelings, things always seem to pick up quite nicely and move forward after I’ve paused, rested, stepped away for a moment.
Allow yourself to embrace the Pause. Sit with being uncomfortable for a few days or longer, sit with your sadness, and sit with your confusion. It’s okay, it’s part of life’s ebb and flow… the answers will come, trust they are in there and allow them to show themselves. You don’t need to fix anything, let yourself rest, love yourself, and know that you are enough.  See what comes up for your own growth process.  You will be better for it.

Copyright G. Brian Benson 2017

 

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Riding on the Freeway of Love

Riding on the Freeway of Love

Living in Los Angeles and having to navigate the busy freeways, highways and city streets, I found that this daily ritual offers a great opportunity for me to focus on the art of giving.

Each day I’m given the choice to let people in front of me. Or not. Kind of like the opportunities we are given in life to help one another. I will tell you that when I do let someone in to merge or to switch lanes, it makes the rest of my drive that much smoother and more enjoyable. The actual act itself is quite simple yet it totally changes my energy in a positive way. It makes me feel like I am contributing to life instead of taking from it.

Conversely, it turns negative on those days when I am feeling competitive or ornery and don’t let someone merge in front of me. Why do I do that? It’s not like I was going to arrive late to my destination because I let one person in front of me on a freeway that is crawling at a snail’s pace anyways.

We are all in this crazy, beautiful life together and driving on the freeway is the perfect metaphor for that. By helping each other and looking out for one other, even in the simplest of ways, our own personal journey is much more fulfilling and enjoyable. And believe me…that goodness spreads like wildfire when others witness it.

So next time you’re given the opportunity to let someone merge into your lane while driving, don’t hesitate. You’ll feel better, they will be appreciative and the positivity shared will inspire others to join in the fun.

Copyright G. Brian Benson 2017

The Moment of Commitment

“The moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too.”
-attributed to Goethe
I can really relate to this. Early this week, I saw an ad for a local 6 week cross-fit class at a gym near where I live. Instantly I got an intuitive hit that I needed/wanted to do it. I used to do a lot of heavy training while preparing for triathlons/Ironman events in the past and lately I have just been primarily hiking etc. While there is nothing wrong with hiking (it’s amazing!), I was feeling like I needed to challenge and wake my body/system up so I joined the class which starts next week. This week has been amazing…I have watched what i put in my body more carefully and just been imagining what my body is going to be feeling and looking like during and after the class…it has already started to transform…all because of a decision. Please remember this going forward friends. It doesn’t matter what it is for…if you want to be serious about something…make that commitment and see it/feel it happening. You will head in that direction! Much Peace! Brian

Patience During the Learning Process

Self-growth isn’t easy and it can be very frustrating and embarrassing (trust me I know), but It’s sure worth it. It takes patience; unconditional love and honest communication aimed at yourself as well as to those you are journeying with. I truly think there is no greater gift you can gift to yourself or to a loved one than to be open, honest and willing to explore those areas that we aren’t whole in.
 
Keep venturing forth; keep exploring who you are and what makes you tick. Keep being honest with yourself in the areas that need work and don’t be afraid to seek guidance. Also be very patient with those you are journeying with. As you learn and grow together, things will come up, insecurities will be triggered and pain will show itself. That’s not a bad thing as long as you communicate together about it and continue to be earnest about becoming aware of your patterns. It’s the ultimate form of love you can show to another.
 
Believe it or not you picked each other to help each other’s grow. When we are triggered and have unresolved pain come up, it can be easy to blame it on your partner or another family member… take a step back, take a deep breath and explore where that pain comes from. It’s a process, but it’s ok. You are ok. Give yourself permission to be human and grow. And most importantly continue to shower yourself with lots of love. That in and off itself will take care of a lot.
We are all in this together.
 
-G. Brian Benson Copyright 2017

Falling Back into Grace

The world has been challenging lately, especially for those of us who are teachers and mentors and trying to live as examples of positivity and light.
 
Well, it can happen to the best of us, but I let myself drift into a kind of darkness. Maybe it was the world’s energy, but after getting cast to play “the normal guy with a dark side” more than a few times in films and on TV, I started to see myself as an actor who did these dark, brooding roles and even had head shots that reflected that. And, well, Surprise! I started to feel a bit dark and brooding and even a little depressed. I let myself just live there for a while in the negativity and I didn’t even see it until my loving girlfriend pointed it out to me. I started to look at my photos, my posts, the way I presented myself and realized that it was true. I was dwelling more in negativity than positivity.
 
I’m not talking about authentic grief or sadness, or even anger that comes with life’s tragedies, but rather self-identifying with the darker side of myself.
 
But here’s the thing, I never achieved anything in my life by being negative! Everything I’ve done, I’ve done by believing in my power and myself to do anything I set my mind too. I started to look at that, and I started to wake myself back up to who I really am. I remembered and practiced my affirmations and my belief in the goodness and light in the world.
 
And you know what? I started to feel better. I began to feel the joy around me. My heart opened up even more to love. I could feel a difference in my daily life, my health, my energy, and mostly, in myself. I began to be truly grateful again and to see all of the blessings in my life. I remembered who I was and that I was enough. I made little changes in my daily routine. I allowed myself to thrive, to see beauty everywhere, to take time for myself, and to simply be in Grace.
 
Whatever you are going through, remember to take even a few minutes to bring in that light of who you are, to feel gratitude, to feel love. And please don’t be hard on yourself if you find yourself in a dark place, just know it’s part of the journey and move on. See the beauty in you and that is all around you, feel the love in your heart, be the full you that you know you are.
 
Copyright 2017 G. Brian Benson

Video Discussion – Moving Forward during tough times.

 

22 minute video chat that I had

with John Masiulionis on his 

Spotlight Series show Empowered by John!

I hope you enjoy this heartfelt chat discussing moving forward during tough times and knowing that we are enough.

Click to Watch!       

Spotlight Series Interview on the Empowered by John Show

Affirmation of the Week!

I see joy, love, humor and happiness in all that I experience. 

It Even Rains in LA…

You know, it can be really hard to stay positive when life rains down on you unexpectedly. However, I’ve always tried to expect the unexpected, and stay open. I also always try and stay positive no matter what. Well, that’s not always so easy. 

I had recently been living in my place for about a year. I loved it. One day, the owners decided to put it on the market and it sold within the first week! Suddenly, I had to find a new place within 45 days. Well, okay. Not convenient, but not terrible. 

However, it was raining in LA, and I don’t mean a little rain. I mean torrential rains up to four inches in one day! A few days later, the house began to smell really musty. I noticed the carpet was wet around all the corners and edges. Unfortunately, I’d stacked boxes of my children’s books in the corners and when I moved them discovered that they were damp and covered in mold and fungi. I was beginning to be concerned about the potentially dangerous air quality. This absolutely meant that I had to move quickly for my health. I was also worried that my things would get damaged.  It was time to go. 

It really stressed me out. I had always felt like I was a great manifestor and would be able to conjure exactly what I was looking for in my price range.  But I kept looking around and nothing I looked at felt right. I was getting to the point where I was willing to sign a lease at a place just to get out of there when a friend of mine contacted me on social media and said her mom was renting a place. I admit I wasn’t feeling very hopeful, but told myself to stay positive. I went to look at it and it was perfect. Eclectic, interesting, comfortable and in a neighborhood that was close to great walks, Griffith Park, and a new coffee shop to work on my laptop.  It felt like me and it felt like home almost immediately. 

It can sometimes feel really overwhelming when everything happens at once. I think the key is to not give up, no matter how impossible it seems at the time. I’m not saying that’s easy, it takes courage, especially in the face of any kind of disaster. Real life happens to everyone. To you, to me, to everyone; and it’s how we take on those challenges that make us who we are to become.  The most important thing is to have faith and believe that something even better is just around the corner. 

Copyright G. Brian Benson 2017

Creating Self Awareness

“Life can be a wonderful administration of the heart, the mind, and the soul. By listening to your heart and visualizing with your mind, you can come into alignment with your soul.” – G. Brian Benson

Knowledge is power. As we learn, grow, and become more self-aware our world opens up in amazing ways. It’s an ongoing process. We are here to learn and grow and when we are open to that, our lives become much more enjoyable and free. There are always people and situations that come into our lives at just the right moment to help us learn, if we pay attention and listen.

But what if, even when we are trying to always listen from our heart, we just can’t hear the message? What if we find ourselves “bumping into walls” so much that we can’t figure out what it’s about? What if all we feel is our limitations?

That’s also part of what the heart is sharing with you. It can be a steep learning curve. Once we become aware of our limitations, our unhealthy patterns, we can recognize them and begin to heal. It’s not always easy, but if we can stay present and listen and then let it go, we can move back into balance.

I’ve been working on myself for a long time and most of the time I am able to draw on past experiences which I have filed away. This has allowed me to really get to know myself and have the knowledge that helps me be a better me as I move into the second half of my life and hopefully continue to learn from past mistakes. The key I have found is to stay grounded and operate from my heart not from my head. When I operate from my head I often create false stories that lead to nothing but suffering.

Self-awareness is simply another way of listening, of paying attention to our patterns, of opening our hearts, minds and souls to change. Stuff happens to all of us, but having self-knowledge and staying open allows us to flow through it more easily.

Copyright G. Brian Benson 2017

 

Taking a Step Back

It’s been a while since I’ve written. It’s not as if I didn’t want to, but something would always come up, feel more important, or need immediate attention. I admit there were also plenty of times when I just didn’t feel like it, or feel like I had anything to say. I think it’s vital to honor ourselves during our “hibernating times” rather than beat ourselves up for “not doing”, “not being enough”, “not accomplishing”, “not making it”. It can be difficult to trust and be open to what may happen when we just don’t feel like doing anything. We’ve all felt that inner critic who constantly rides us to keep going, keep doing! But the risk of constantly being on and moving forward, is that there are times we stop hearing that quiet voice of intuition.

Whenever we take some time and step back, new pathways open before us, or we realize we are on the right path as it deepens. We re-fill our creativity, our soul, and new opportunities (and yes, challenges) present themselves. It’s so important for me to remember to try and stay in balance. There are times I am pushing myself and I become a human-doing instead of a human-being. This winter was a time for me to get back in touch with myself, to trust my intuition, and to stay open to the power of YES.

So, let yourself just be yourself to free yourself. I know you’ve heard me say that before, but I need reminders too and that’s what these past few months have been. Keeping an open mind and just showing up also means showing up for yourself, not everyone else. Take those long walks in nature, allow yourself time to read, take a bath, enjoy some evenings with friends, and try to avoid getting down on yourself if everything doesn’t seem to be going according to plan. Because, and this is important, everything IS going according to plan! So expect the unexpected and be you! And know I’m working on that too.

It’s great to be back!

At the Risk of Being Judged…

I recently learned something about myself. I learned that I was not as thick skinned as I previously thought I was. My recent book “Steve the Alien” received its first poor review on Amazon. It’s amazing how one bad review can really shake a person’s foundation. Up to that point, I had received only 5 Star reviews. I was extremely proud and grateful for each and every one, but when I read the stinging review, my heart sank down to my boots. I’d worked my ass off writing and producing that book. I knew that my hard work had paid off. I was getting all kinds of positive and kind feedback. How could this be?
The poor review brought up all kinds of fears for me. The fear that someone considering purchasing the book would see it and then decide against it. That fear transformed into the “I will never sell another book again” which then transformed into “I will never reach my other goals and intentions” which then transformed into “I will never be successful” which then ultimately transformed into “I am a failure.” Which of course isn’t true…I know that. But it’s not that easy. That review triggered parts of me that need healing. I realize that not everyone is going to like what I do…it comes with the territory of sharing work in the public realm. Being reviewed is never easy…it’s essentially opening oneself up to being judged in some way. No one likes to be judged, (unless, of course, it’s all good). I wondered if I was cut out for this. I know that sounds dramatic…which typically I am anything but.
The thing that bothered me the most was that the review wasn’t even about the book. It was about an accidental one-time printing glitch from the publisher. Apparently it printed two books inside the cover instead of one. Not a big deal. But in big bold letters, the headline stated, “AWFUL PRINTING!” Why didn’t they just email Amazon, let them know and get another book sent to them? Hell, I would be happy to send her a book.
I wanted my book to put a smile on someone’s face, not create an unhappy situation. However, I needed to remember that all people are subjective; one person might love Picasso, another might love Van Gogh. We all feel differently. I started to read the positive reviews again, but even with all of the glowing reviews, it was hard to hear anything but the negative one.
At the end of the day, the entire point of my book “Steve the Alien” is to show compassion, kindness, and to be open to making new friends in spite of differences. If I am going to walk my talk and be like the characters in the book that I wrote, I need to simply hold space for this woman, even if it’s uncomfortable. There is really nothing else I can do but take the high road with grace, compassion, and gratitude. Oh…and to also realize it wasn’t personal. 😉
We must never be afraid to create. We have to do it for our own personal happiness and sanity. We create to spread beauty, to share ideas into the world, to bridge misunderstandings and to form connections with one another. We do it to connect with our spiritual nature, to something bigger than ourselves. And we have to do it even at the risk of being judged.
Copyright G. Brian Benson 2016