Interview ELIZABETH GRULLÓN | I am Aligning Myself with the Joy of Life’s Unfolding
The sensation we experience when we feel the dance of energies flowing through us and to us is indescribable. This moment of connection becoming one with Source/God, receiving the clarity of who we are as a whole. When we expand our awareness of self; self-worth, self-empowerment, self-care, self-love… we will give out to the world, that which we feel within ourselves. By focusing on aligning ourselves first, we will know that I AM – WE and WE – ALL are an extension of the energies that create worlds.
Actress Elizabeth Grullón, who can be seen as Sully on Freeform’s series Party of Five says, “For me, it starts with having a sense of awareness about the “self.” And that’s a process because in our world it’s easy to focus solely on the external.”
In this aligned interview with Elizabeth, you will learn about her role as Sully, and she will deeply inspire you with her words of wisdom.
- Please introduce yourself briefly. Who, in your own words, is Elizabeth Grullón?
I am a Dominican-American actress and meditation facilitator. A first-generation American. I am passionate about the power that we have as human beings to hold ourselves, each other and the planet in a loving presence. I love coffee and wine and deep conversations, the oceans, the forests, and the mountains.
- How does being the first-generation American born to Dominican parents, the combination of both cultures, and being raised in such a cosmopolitan city like New York has influenced your sense of self?
I owe everything to my family. My parents and the culture that they come from have made me a family-oriented, spiritual, strong woman. They’re just the greatest. There is a sacred simplicity about people who come from a third world country – we laugh and dance and cook together and express ourselves freely. My parents arrived in NYC with very little and built an empire of love, and that requires strength and discernment and a good bullshit detector, ha! I think it made me loving while also being pragmatic.
- Like every human being, we feel our way through life clarifying our preferences and desires. How that journey was for you when it comes to embracing your love for acting?
I like the idea of refining preferences. That resonates with me. That refinement process has affected every aspect of my life, not just acting. I feel like clarifying preferences becomes easier when we realize our own worth. Because then it’s like: “Oh I don’t have to just take what I’m offered. I choose.” As a woman of color living in a patriarchy, this process of realizing my worth and then allowing it to empower me to own my preferences is revolutionary.
- There is a shift in mindset where many talents started to express their creativity through diverse disciplines creating their own opportunities. Why do you think this is happening and how do you envision the entertainment industry’s future?
I think a creative person is going to find ways to be creative. I love that people are dropping limitations and just expressing. I did the same. I am in the process of finishing my directorial debut, a short called ASH, I do tons of voice over, teach mindfulness — there’s all this diversity because I am diverse.
I think the entertainment industry is undergoing radical change as is the world at large. Hopefully, the paradigm shift of treating each and every human being with dignity and respect as well as realizing that we are not superior to the earth will happen in every industry, not just ours. This is a major time for our species and our planet and our country – it’s time to put our money where our mouth is and step up to the plate. The old structures are dying and they can R.I.P. as far as I’m concerned.
- There is more diverse content within a big range of cultural background contexts. How does this affect the industry as well as the audience?
Everything is changing so rapidly. It’s wonderful. I think women and people of color are feeling emboldened and seen in ways they haven’t before which is just THE GREATEST. And I also see the resistance and discomfort of the power structures that are shaking and shifting. Even with Party of Five it has been a 95% positive response but you go online and see so many comments of people who are triggered by the diversity and political point of view and I love that! I’m like: “Oh there it is, there’s the resistance.” Discomfort is a signpost of growth.
- On Freeform’s series Party of Five, you play a Dominican activist Theresa Sullivan. How would you describe your emotional journey feeling your way through becoming your character?
Actually, as soon as I booked the role, I sensed some synchronicity. I think the personal development that I had been going through during the months leading up to booking the role was my preparation. The main thing about Sully, emotionally, is that she cares about something more than she’s afraid. There’s this sense of being driven by a sense of love for her community. I feel the same way.
- How would you define the connection between Theresa and Lucia Acosta (Emily Tosta)?
Sully becomes a mentor to Lucia. They form a friendship. I think Lucia is angry and disenchanted with life and in Sully she finds a woman who has channeled her anger and rebellion in a healthy way. That’s what Lucia needed. Sully has a gentle way of pointing Lucia back to her true nature, of reminding her of who she really is – like all great mentors do.
- What core role does Theresa play within the Acosta family’s situation?
For Lucia, Sully is an example of what a woman with a voice looks like. An empowered woman. She supplies strength and hope. Sully is also a source of information for the family regarding immigration law and the rights of undocumented citizens.
- Why do you think Party of Five resonates with so many viewers, and what does your character represent for you?
I think the show resonates with people because it’s a story about people who love each other and are really trying to figure it out. As human beings I think we’re hungry for stories about family and love. I think the Latinx community is delighted to witness themselves represented on screen, in such diverse and wholesome ways. The show is a love song to people everywhere who are up against unfair obstacles, a reminder that together we can overcome.
For me, Sully represents freedom; a woman of color who has released herself from the chains of oppression and arrived in a place of total self-acceptance. I am so proud to play her.
- Have you discovered anything new about yourself while portraying Theresa?
I absolutely have! Working on a character who works so closely with undocumented immigrants has lead me to strike up conversations with my family members about their immigration stories. I’ve learned a lot about my own trajectory. She’s also ignited in me a deeper sense of service to my Latinx community. And a deeper sense of pride and love.
- Are there any other exciting projects you are passionate about at this moment?
I’m in the process of finishing my directorial debut with a piece entitled ASH. I’m also enjoying the release of my latest feature film, ROAD HEAD, an unconventional slasher-comedy about a woman of color and a queer person fiercely fighting their own demons and the literal monsters around them. Stay tuned!
- What does to be aligned with yourself mean to you?
Such a beautiful question. For me, it starts with having a sense of awareness about the “self.” And that’s a process because in our world it’s easy to focus solely on the external. So we have to practice, checking in, asking questions, like who am I? How am I doing? How do I feel? What do I like? I started to feel an alignment happen in my life when I added some care to whatever was arising on the other side of these questions. That sense of friendliness toward the self-developed into love and eventually started to have a ripple effect in the outer world that I could call “alignment.”
- Are you involved in any other charity organization or humanitarian cause you would like to mention?
I am passionate about protecting the planet from human greed. I plan on doing more to that end. Still working out what angle I want to approach from.
- The spirit of The Hedonist Magazine is The Essence of a Joyful Living. How does Joy during the creative process affect your own experience and in consequence the final manifestation of your actions?
Joy is the highest vibration. It’s the most incredible magnet. It’s also highly contagious and far too rare in this world so when we see it our mirror neurons go crazy – we LOVE it. It’s our nature. Joy is everything to me in the creative process. For a while the thinking mind was in control of my creative expression so acting became about the small separate self – competing, wanting to be special. A low vibration. And that’s ok, that’s human. But as I went deeper into mindfulness I found my joy again! That deep smile of “Oh I get to share today! I get to connect. I need nothing. I am here to give.” And it changes the work completely. I’m not fully there yet, I still kind of toggle back and forth – unlearning is a process – but I am grateful to be on the joy journey.
- When you hear: “You can be, do and have anything you want,” words from the Abraham-Hicks teachings, what is your take on such a statement?
I think it means that we have the power to create worlds. And we already are, whether consciously or unconsciously. With awareness of the patterns of our minds and a lot of care for the wounds that those patterns are protecting, we empower ourselves to have more choice in our thinking and feeling – in our vibration. Like attracts like so when we get to a place where we are more habitually aligning with joy and gratitude the environment responds by giving us more to be grateful for. Each human being is so powerful.