“Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgement that something else is more important than fear.” - Ambrose Redmoon
1. Be Loving and Kind to Yourself and Others.
2. People are much better than they get credit for.
3. You can do anything you want.
4. You being happy makes our world a better place.
5. Give because it is fun and feels good, and not to gain in the future.
About Benjamin (Me!): The Short Story.
I am an artist, traveler, and lover of people. I want to help the people of our world be more connected to each other. I strive to learn as much as I can about myself and our world. I grew up in a small town in Michigan and graduated from Michigan State University with a degree in Psychology. I worked at a wilderness school in Virginia helping at-risk teens for 6 years, where I learned much, much, much. After I have been fulfilling my dream to travel the world and meet all the people in it (or at least a whole bunch).
Benjamin: The Long Story.
“May you live all the days of your life.” – Jonathan Swift
I love learning.
I grew up in a teeny, tiny town in the middle of Michigan. Carson City has one blinking light and no Wal-mart. A McDonald’s moved in when I was a sophomore in high school. However, my grandparents lived near New York City and my Nana is an avid traveler. I was fortunate enough to wander the streets of New York City and visit Portugal before I entered high school. My Nana’s stories of far off lands sparked an unsatiable thirst for knowledge and wisdom.
I love traveling.
I went to Michigan State University, where I eventually settled down into the field of psychology. After a trip to Australia and the Netherlands, I realized (sometimes painfully) how large and different our world is. I learned and had to grow in ways I had never experienced. I was hooked.
I love people.
After graduating from Michigan State, I was ready to explore our world. I looked into teaching English in other counties, but eventually settled on becoming a counselor at a small school in Virginia. New Dominion School was a residential school for at-risk youth that was set on 550 acres of forest in Central Virginia. The kids were from a variety of backgrounds. Some rich and some poor, some angry and some sad, some cocky and some terrified. The kids spent over a year here learning to ‘turn their lives around.’ I lived there 5 days a week for over a year and learned much about myself and other people in the process. I had planned to stay for two years but that turned into 6 years.
I love growing.
I didn’t leave because there was always another challenge and I felt compelled to help the kids and the school. I became accustomed to taking a hard look at myself everyday and pushing myself to grow. I learned to lead at New Dominion by being an example to the kids and the other counselors. After directing the school for a year and a half, the time to leave was coming closer and closer. It was an exciting time, but it was also a heartbreaking time as the school was in a tail spin, partially due to the economic crisis. When I left the school, I was emotionally spent and very ready to devote myself to my other passions, which I had neglected as all my time and energy went into the school.
I love art.
Since college and my first digital camera, I have loved photography. This love and practice spread to other forms of art. But I have always been drawn to unique forms of art. People whom dared to do something different. People whom dared to express the world as they see it. As time passed, my thoughts and direction towards what was next became clearer and clearer.
I love hitchhiking.
Create Our World was born from throbbing stew of all my passions and my desire to live my dreams. To really go after a life that would fulfill me on all levels. To no longer settle for what others thought I could have or thought I could do. To go as big as I dreamed and see what would happen.
I had hitchhiked a few times in the past couple years because of my old and tempermental Honda Accord. I loved it!
The idea dawned to hitchhike around the USA. But not just to keep the knowledge for myself or focus on having fun or cutting loose. No the goal was to learn as much as I could. To learn about people, whom are much different from myself. To learn why people do as they do and how I could connect with anyone. I wanted to use my skills in photography and writing to share this knowledge with the world.
Hence, Create Our World was born.
I believe I can change the world and so can you.
10 Quotes that Influence Me.
“Whomever is happy will make other happy too.” – Mark Twain
“Spread love everywhere you go. Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier.” – Mother Teresa
“A journey is best measured in friends and not miles.” – Tim Cahill
“Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared.” – Buddha
“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs, ask yourself what makes you come alive. And then go and do that. Because what the world needs is people who are alive.” – Howard Thurman
“What I am actually saying is that we need to be willing to let our intuition guide us, and then be willing to follow that guidance directly and fearlessly.” -Shakti Gawain
“Whenever you do a thing, though it can be known but to yourself, ask yourself how you would act were all the world looking at you, and act accordingly.“ – Thomas Jefferson
”Love is always bestowed as a gift – freely, willingly, and without expectation. We don’t love to be loved; we love to love.” - Leo Buscaglia
“Today you are YOU, that is truer than true. There is no one alive that is Youer than You.” -Dr. Seuss
“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.” - Anne Frank
10 Books that Influence Me.
Worldwalk by Steven M. Newman
Living in the Light by Shakti Gawain
Siddhartha by Herman Hesse
Celestine Prophecy by James Redfield
On the Road by Jack Keroauc
Care of the Soul by Thomas Moore
Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle
Way of Zen by Alan Watts
The Way of the Superior Man by David Deida
What Would Google Do? by Jeff Jarvis
Blogs that Influence Me.
Seth’s Blog by Seth Godin: Marketing and Spreading Ideas.
The Art of Non-Conformity by Chris Guillebreau.
Escape from Cubicle Nation by Pam Slim.
Problogger by Darren Rowse.
Zen Habits by Leo Babauta.
The Happiness Project by Getchen Rubin.
“Thousands of candles can be lit from a single candle and the life of a candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared.” – Buddha