You are NOT your own worst enemy…at least…you don’t have to be.

EVERYTHING we do is with the intention to make our short-term, present emotional lives either, less painful / stressful, more tolerable, or more meaningful / pleasurable in some way.

We are always coping with the imperative of making the NOW bearable as we pursue our longer-term ideals.

How to integrate our short-term intrinsic rewards with our long term goals/desires?

One thing I know for sure – it is NOT by seeing yourself as an enemy.

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Agilizing, Resistance and the Art of War

I learned a lot about how to AVOID inner war by reading the “Art of War” by SunTzu.  I read the book because I wanted to better understand why “war” is so commonly used as in our culture as a metaphor for personal growth.  In my opinion, gardening and cultivation is a far more accurate metaphor for how personal growth really works.  

To my surprise I found that he actually teaches war as a last resort.  Yes so many people have distorted his work and use it to justify using war metaphors as a primary way of interacting with themselves, like “Conquering Your Inner Critic” or “Battling your Inner Demons.” Another popular example of this is the book, “The War of Art.” Sun Tzu actually teaches the utter brilliance of winning by never going to war – it is a far superior strategy to avoid war and if possible, turn your opponents into allies.

Another common myth is that The Art of War is about how to deal with enemies.  Interestingly, I found that he used the term “oppositional forces” and “opponents” rather than enemies. According to Sun Tzu, hate or disrespect for your opposition actually makes YOU weak…not them.

Think of your resistance as your natural opposition to “over-controlling” or “over-pressuring” or “not listening” to some part of yourself that isn’t yet “READY” for what you are proposing.

When you are resisting doing something you think you “should” be doing, instead of fighting it, try asking yourself one of more of these questions that help you “agilize” rather than go to war:

- What would help me feel more “ready” to do this?
– What time of day might I more naturally be inclined to do this?
– What’ would make this feel easier?
– What is the really value of doing this?
– What will the impact be? in the short term?
– How little of this could I do and call it good enough?
– What assumptions am I making about when, where, how, how much, how long, with who, how perfect, how many?
– What could I redesign to make this more attractive?

Focusing on readiness to do things rather than “pushing” or coercing yourself is much more satisfying in the long run. Try it a couple times.

See how your resistance changes when your creative brain kicks in. : )




The Truth about Chronic Disorganization: What Causes It and How to Heal the Trauma of Lifelong Overwhelm and Frustration

Although I prefer the term “Lifelong Disorganization“, the established industry terms are “chronic disorganization” and “challenging disorganization” this is not intended to imply a medical condition, nor an “incurable” condition.

The intention of the terms are to distinguish an “ongoing pattern of disorganization” from the “short term situational disorganization” and clutter that is the normal result of grief, illness, having children, and other life events, transitions, and changes. That said, it is quite common for what started as “stituational disorganization” to evolve into “chronic” or “challenging disorganization.”


What is Situationally Disorganized?

When life throws you a curveball, most of us tend to accumulate clutter and become rather disorganized for a while. It’s happens to everyone. We become ill, a family member becomes ill, we are assigned a project at work that requires a lot of travel, or has a ridiculous deadline. Our lives change. We move, get married, have kids, or start a new job. During times of transition, a certain amount of chaos, clutter and disorganization is natural. This is what we call “Situationally Disorganized”: Disorganization that is a normal side effect of a life situation.

What makes “Chronic Disorganization” different?

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Misdiagnosis and Dual Diagnoses of Gifted Children and Adults: ADHD, Bipolar, OCD, Asperger’s, Depression, and Other Disorders

Have you had multiple labels given to you by professionals? Do you love someone who has?

One of the well-kept secrets of the mental health community is that more than half and possibly up to 80% or more of the people who receive a diagnosis of ADHD, Bipolar, OCD, Asperger’s, PTSD, Depression, or a Learning Disorder are also gifted and multi-talented. Also, if you get any one of these diagnoses you are very like to get multiple diagnoses. They call this co-morbid or co-occuring conditions. They also may call you twice-exceptional.

 By definition, multiple diagnoses is a sign that we don’t really understand the full complexity of the underlying causes of human behavior. Is depression chemical? is it situational? is it reactionary? is it lifestyle? is it culture? is it the individual’s responsibility?

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Agile Life Design – Free Audio Class

I was Interviewed by Akilah Richards for the Excellence in Relationships TeleSummit™  about Agile Life Design and what it takes to design your life and your work to FIT you so that you can have healthier relationships and become more impactfully productive.agile-life-design-logo


QUOTES FROM THE PRESENTATION posted as they were listening…

When you trust that you will make the best of things even when they don’t turn as you hoped or expected, you actually can’t fail — there is no longer any such thing as “waste” — EVERY experience then becomes an “investment” in your becoming ready for success.  This is the deepest level of self-confidence and inner security.

“When you really get that there is no such thing as wasting time, that is the most profound state of faith, freedom and motivated action you can experience.”
“You cannot be ready for success until you are ready for failure.”
‎”I don’t say yes to something unless I’m willing to fail at it.”
“Instead of bossing yourself around, think of yourself as a client and partner with yourself!” 
There is more than one way to look at reliability….
“I can count on myself to recover, more than I can count on myself NOT to mess up. I am going to mess up.”
“It’s not about “fixing” your life, it’s about noticing what’s needed.”


Thank you all for posting the quotes –  It’s so great to know what really resonated for you!
Feel free to use these quotes and attribute them to ~Ariane Benefit


Here are some of the quotes that people posted on Facebook after the program…

  • Thank You Ariane! I realized that there are a lot of ideas that I have not acted on because of the fear of failure. However, when I look back on my journey I’m really good at putting the pieces back together. Failure is not so bad after all :)  - Jen Rogers
  • I learned so much from that call, and I feel a renewed sense of trust in my journey. - A. Richards


An Easy Button for Attention Management and Shifting Perspective

We live in a time when technological, economic, political and social change is happening so fast and so unpredictably that many of us are hurrying through life feeling chronically stressed, frazzled and literally afraid to disconnect from our phones, email and to do lists.

Our attention is so hard to get (or hold) these days, it’s becoming more valuable than time or money. Attention is the core ingredient in the quality of every relationship in your life.

If you ignore something, or notice it with indifference or disdain, you won’t have an enjoyable relationship with it. For example,

  • If you struggle with how you pay attention to time, you will struggle with time management. 
  • If you notice your money with fear of not having enough, you are likely to not enough.
  • If you notice your money with the intention of how to ensure you have enough for your most essential needs, you are likely to have enough. 
  • If you notice something with an intense yearning for more or less of it, satisfaction is likely to elude you.

The ability to adjust the way you notice things — yourself and everything you are connected to — is the most powerful “easy button” available for transforming your life. Everyone already has this ability…but like a seed in the garden, it requires certain conditions and nourishment to bloom into its full potential.  The ability to adjust is at the heart of all human success. 

Mastering the ability to make adjustments, just enough, just-in-time, to fit the current situation is known as “Agility.”   Becoming agile is like having a set of “easy buttons” for getting unstuck and enjoying the dance of life, even when the music gets too loud for us.    

 The key to finding easy buttons, is to look for them.    

Think about it. Ever look in a drawer to find something and couldn’t see it even though it was sitting right there?  It may have been under something. Or it simply did not match the picture you had in your head of what it would like it.  To find it, all you needed was to let go of the picture you had in your head so that you could see other possibilities.  

What words are you using to describe yourself and your life right now?

I’d like to ask you to release whatever words and pictures you have in your mind of yourself just for a moment.  Do they make you feel stressed? neutral? calm? grateful?  Imagine there is another possible way to see yourself.  Imagine an alternative universe where the words you use to describe your traits or labels are neither normal or abnormal – they are just common or uncommon.  

Could you feel the power of simply changing the language used to describe yourself? Using different, neutral words to describe the same thing changes your perspective and can shift your entire emotional state.  

Wishing you much peace and an ever agile heart and mind, 

 Stay tuned and watch what happens next! 

Click here for more free resources.

Who are Agilizers? We are Creatives. Thinkers. Change Agents. Challengers. Outliers. Different. Neurodiverse.

Since discovering my tribe of outliers, agilizers, and creative neurodiverse thinkers, I will never see myself the same way again. I’m more at peace today than I even knew was possible. The power of understanding that you are not defective, and you are not alone – that there is a group of people where everything you think is freaky about yourself is actually NORMAL can’t really be described in words.

We are outliers.  Outliers are people who fall outside the normal ranges of the bell curve. 

We are uncommon. We think differently from the average person. We are neurodiverse – our brains and nervous systems are wired differently from the average or neurotypical brain.

This does not mean we are disordered – it’s more like Continue reading

The Power of Tiny Actions to Change your Emotional Life: Could you use a little “salt in your soup” today?

Efforts, no matter how small, are the ingredients of every accomplishment. Just a little salt in a soup can transform it from bland to delicious.  Makes you really want to take the next spoonful, right?

So it is with even your tiniest efforts.  A little acknowledgement of your efforts and ignoring of your disappointments and flaws is like that salt…it makes all the other ingredients taste better, AND it inspires you to take the next little step.  : ) 

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