Continue Trusting

Several years ago my husband and I were embarking on our move to San Francisco from Pasadena.  Our house sold in record time! (3 days) We were undecided on which area of SF to move to.  I was thinking about the areas around Golden Gate Park and the Outer Sunset neighborhoods. However we really didn’t know.  And I needed to consider my commute downtown.  So we thought we would take out a month to month short term lease on an apartment, search the neighborhoods during my month off between positions, and then move into our perfect right place. Due to limited time, I needed to sign for an executive apartment on Nob Hill sight unseen!!!!!  My only info came off the internet.

To say I was nervous and had reservations puts it mildly. I almost flew up to see the place.  Then I was given a message that sealed the deal.

I was turning in my phone and computer to the company I was retiring from, and while on the phone with the IT gal working through the process, she said to me – Karen, just continue trusting!!!!!

WOW! What a relevant message not only to what we were working on – but to my situation on taking the apartment sight unseen. Of course, one must do their due diligence, research, and fact finding.

And sure enough, sight unseen, we ventured up to our temporary apartment which was wonderful.  From there we were able to daily scout the neighborhoods and decide where would be the best location to settle into life in SF.

The neighborhoods around Gold Gate Park and the Avenues were too foggy and too far of a commute. We loved the Nob Hill, Pacific Heights areas as well as the Presidio and Marina.  We found our perfect place diagonally across from our temp place on Nob Hill!!!!! It was the ideal location, good floorplan, great view, reasonable walking commute to the office. It served us well for the time in SF.

Since that time, when I am faced with indecision, skepticism, or doubt, I hear the words – Continue trusting!

Sound advice for all of us.

With Love and Light,

Karen

 

“Good Job”

We all appreciate being told “Good Job” from a boss, colleague, partner, friend.  It feels good!  It boosts our confidence.  It makes us want to do more, do better, be better.

However at times, even though we know we have done a good job, no “Good Job” acknowledgement comes our way.

How does that make you feel? Do you get upset that they do not see it?  Do you feel underappreciated, less than, angry? Do you want to change jobs, move away, discontinue the friendship or partnership?

Just because you know the importance of encouraging others, showing appreciation to others, and giving feedback, doesn’t mean that everyone does. For whatever reason, some people never learn the importance or the impact that a positive  acknowledgement or compliment makes. Sure, as much as we want praise from others, it does not always happen.

What is most important is to acknowledge ourselves, say “Good Job” when we know that we have done well. Give yourself a pat on the back, a high five, a thumbs up, a “Yes!”.

We need to rely on our own selves to boost our confidence, acknowledge what we have done, be proud of who we are and who we are becoming.

Look inside yourself.  That is where the truth lies.  That is where your biggest admirer and critic is.  And that is who is most important!  How YOU view yourself.  How YOU encourage yourself.  How YOU inspire, motivate, and elevate yourself.

Don’t wait for others to give yourself that much deserved acknowledgement.  Boost your own confidence!  Celebrate you! Hug yourself!  Love yourself!

With Light and Love,

Karen

 

The Art of Communication

Yes, speaking is an art form.  When we speak we have the power to influence, motivate, inspire, assist, comfort, and encourage.  We also through our words and tone, can harm, upset, bully, aggravate, and frighten.

Remember too that the Art of Communication relates to all forms – phone, twitter, facebook, instagram, emails, texts, all messaging vehicles. They all reflect your voice.

We have a choice!
We can decide how we want to speak to ourselves and to others.
Have what you say be in alignment with who you are.

Words are powerful.

I read an article earlier today which reminded me of how to best communicate. It discussed the Buddhist principles of Right Speech. The four elements of right speech means you use words that are true, balanced, necessary, and kind.

How do you interpret them?
Does that mean you never argue, never be loud, never be critical?  I personally do not think so.
Based on the situation, you may have to raise your voice and speak in a more direct, harsher tone than usual.  However what is important is your intention.  You are doing so to “get through” to the other person.  Not to harm them – but to break through the resistance they have to truly hear you. Do what is appropriate for the other party.

I make a practice of being careful with my words and my communications.  Yes – it is a practice.  I want always to be truthful, balanced, communicate what is necessary, and always be kind in my delivery. Do I succeed 100% of the time?  No, I do not. Sometimes I am multitasking and in a rush and could come across as uninterested, short, and not as sensitive as I would like.

So I continue to practice, wanting my words to convey Love, Light, Encouragement, Motivation and Inspiration. That is my voice.  That is my intention.  That is my purpose.

What is your voice?
What is your intention?
What is your purpose?

May you find yours and may you develop your Art of Communication.

With Love and Light,
Karen

Do What you Love!

If you aren’t doing what you Love and Loving what you do,
your power of intention is weakened.
Wayne Dyer
Love what you do!
Sounds easy doesn’t it?
However I have found that too many people do what they do not love.
Why?
They are doing it for their parents.
They feel it is the only profession for them.
Or I hear mostly for the money.
Is that what it is all about?
Think about it.
Of course, money is important and necessary to living a life you desire, deserve, and need.
However how much?  It varies by person.
What is important to reflect on is how you want to earn your money.
What is your purpose?
What is your true passion?
What do you enjoy doing, are good at, and would want to spend time devoting so many hours a day to?
How do you want to imagine, inspire and motivate yourself and others.
It is your Life!  You get to choose!  You get to create it!
Don’t just do it for the money.
Do it for the right intentions – pride, purpose, fulfillment, achievement, doing good.
Do what makes you happy. What brings a smile to your face?
For when you are happy, then you are able to thrive, to succeed, and feel good about yourself and your accomplishments.
Who wants to live in misery? Who really wants to work in an environment they are not suited for just for the money?
Life is too short to not do what you want.
Live in Joy. In peace. In contribution. In sharing what is positive, meaningful, helpful, nourishing and with good intentions.
Love what you do.
Love who you are.
Do not settle for a life being unhappy, doing something just for the money.
Take time to understand where you are and where You want to go.
Wishing you a Life filled with Light and Love, doing what you Love.
Karen

 

Do the Right Thing

I have had incredible mentors and teachers throughout my life.  The above quote continues to resonate with me and influences my daily decisions.

Do what is right!

It sounds simple – however sometimes it is not easy.

  • The right thing could cost more money than budgeted.
  • The right thing could upset someone.
  • The right thing could take longer.
  • The right thing is not what you want to do.
  • The right thing takes you out of your comfort zone.
  • The right thing could mean walking away, leaving behind all you know and all you have.
  • The right thing may look like you are being selfish. (and maybe you are and need to be)

However, the right thing is Always the Right Thing to Do!!!!

  • Face your fear head on.
  • Don’t listen to others.
  • Do what you know, what you feel, and what your gut is telling you.
  • You are coming from your true and authentic self.
  • Listen to the little voice within you, guiding you in the right direction.

So when you are faced with making a decision and you are not sure which way to go:

  • Breathe deep.
  • Calm yourself.
  • Take a few minutes to go within.
  • Then Ask yourself – What is the right thing to do?

You cannot control how others will react. However, know that when you stand for what you truly believe in, and for what is right, it will all be okay.

  • Hold your ground.
  • Be strong.
  • Your intention is pure.
  • Be proud of your conviction to move forward.
  • Do the Right Thing!

With Love and Light,

Karen

 

“I Dwell in Possibility.” Emily Dickinson

HIking up to the cliffside Tigers Nest, Bhutan (10,000+feet)

I admit it.  I look at things from the perspective of “Yes, I can.”
Have I always been like that?  For most of my life I believe yes I have.
I was born 6 weeks premature and weighed a little over 4 pounds.  I guess I just couldn’t wait to come into this world! I feel that arriving early has instilled in me:

  • Persistence
  • A will to thrive
  • Sensitivity
  • Compassion
  • Gratefulness
  • Curiosity
  • Independence
  • Self Reliance
  • A go for it attitude
  • Excited for all the possibilities

Aside from some articles that speak to less than optimum character traits that could stem from being premature, I am thankful to be who I am.

Regardless of whether you were born premature or full term – You can choose how you think, feel and live your life.

Everyday we have the ability to shift our thinking, choose our thoughts, and create our lives.

We decide whether to be happy or sad, positive or negative, optimistic or pessimistic, thankful or resentful, being accountable or blaming others.

Of course, life happens and situations and conditions appear that we have to deal with. It is our attitude, our approach, the course of action we decide upon, that create how we get through to the other side.

And we will get through.

I have found that self-talk is key.

  • How do you talk to yourself?
  • Are you encouraging, inspiring, uplifting and motivating?
  • Or are you condemning your behavior, scolding yourself with the should haves, calling yourself negative names?

Take a few minutes to reflect on your self talk.  By shifting what you say you will dramatically change.

It is all up to you. Dwell in possibility or dwell in impossibility.  Your choice!

As Audrey Hepburn said: Nothing is impossible, the word itself says “I’m possible!”

To a Life filled with Possibilities!

With Light and Love,

Karen

Writing it Down!

IMG_0764

You may at first say – I don’t need to write it down – I always remember!  However we have so many To Do’s, so many thoughts, feelings, intuitions, and ideas all through the day and night, that we sometimes do forget. It happens. We all can use help.  And a simple easy method.

Writing down your thoughts, your tasks, your desires, your goals, your ambitions, and your preferences is key to successfully accomplishing them.Whether your preference is a To Do List, a journal, a scribble on a post it note, handwritten or keyed, find what works for you.
Because it does work!

It sounds so simple – however we resist.
Why?

Distractions, procrastination, a belief that you could just as easily remember.
I guess it is through experience that we learn what really works and what doesn’t.
And yes, it is true that what works for me may not work for you.

However, it is worth trying!

As we kick off 2019, I am making my lists of preferences, desires, goals, objectives, and interests that I would like to accomplish in the year – both professionally and personally.

I usually start with the objectives I set out for myself in 2018 and ask several questions.
Which did I achieve?
Which ones did I not? and Why?
Is the goal still relevant for this year?
What other things do I want to add?
What is important to me?
What are my desired outcomes?
What challenges could I face?

 
Questions are necessary to better identify what it is you truly desire.
For it is only then that you can make it happen.
Because you do make it happen!  Not anyone else.
It is not going to happen just because.
You need to work the program.  You need to be invested.
It is your Life!
You create it.
You can change it.
You are the key ingredient.

So as you kick off 2019, take the time to make your list, write in your journal, use the post it note,  or key your thoughts into your computer, or phone, or tablet.
Do what works for you!

And remember to post your list in one or more prominent places to remind you of your intentions.
Read them every day. Sometimes several times a day.
Occasionally you may decide to modify mid year.  That is perfectly okay.
The important thing is to stay focused and committed.

 
Here is to accomplishing all you set out to do in 2019.
With Love and Light,
Karen

Sending Blessings to ALL

As we transition from 2018 into 2019, I thought I would send everyone Wishes for a Happy New Year using a prayer wheel.

Why a Prayer Wheel you ask? 

A prayer wheel is a spiritual tool for widely distributing loving, compassionate and kind blessings with your positive wishes for yourself, all those you care for, as well as all [sentient] beings.”

We all can benefit from these blessings!

While visiting Bhutan last month, we had many opportunities to spin prayer wheels while hiking to Monasteries, Dzongs and villages. I found myself turning the wheels and reciting mantras, feeling comforted and at peace. I am still relishing that experience.

Buddhists use prayer wheels to spread spiritual blessings to all beings and invoke good karma in their next life. They believe that every rotation of a prayer wheel equals one utterance of a mantra, thus the religious practice will in return help them accumulate merits, replace negative effects with positive ones, and hence bring them good karma.

The religious exercise is part of their life.  People turn the wheel day and night while walking or resting, murmuring the same mantra.

The main mantra is: Om mani padme hum.  a well-loved Buddhist mantra commonly translated as, “The jewel is in the lotus.”  

Every one of the Buddha’s teachings is believed to reside within this one powerful mantra. It is repeated over and over again to invoke the loving and unconditional qualities of compassion. Whether said out loud or silently to oneself, this is one mantra you’ll want to practice to connect with your innately loving and compassionate nature.

Whatever your religion or spiritual practice, be open to receive these blessings for a Healthy, Happy, Prosperous and Peaceful New Year.

Focus on what you desire in 2019 – Do not allow the disruptions and distractions in the world to negatively impact you.

Know that you control your destiny.  You have the power over you.

Regardless of what things appear to be, come back to what you know is the Truth. 

Take the time in the next few weeks to outline and refine your intentions. Set challenging, though reasonable goals.  (You want to achieve them right?!)

Reassess your priorities.  Find your balance.  What works for you may and probably is different than others.  That is okay.  We are all unique individuals with our own preferences, desires, and ambitions.

Be true to you. And know that you can always reassess, refine and make adjustments as you move forward. Be guided by what feels right. 

And have an incredible New Year.

With Light and Love,

Karen

Creating Memories

Happy Holidays Everyone!
At this time of year, whether you are gathered with friends and family, or by yourself,what kind of memories are you creating?
What experiences are you having that will remain with you forever? What sights, sounds, and scents are you seeing, hearing, and smelling? What are you doing to positively impact your life and the lives of others?

The Holidays are a time to reflect on the past, enjoy and be in the present, and make memories for the future.

Here are some of my memories being made:

  • I am enjoying running into friends during my daily runs along the beach and wishing each other well.
  • Seeing the Xmas lights at the harbor and watching the children look at them in awe – (me too)
  • Spending time in the afternoon enjoying Holiday coffee (coffee + liqueur) with my husband – listening to Xmas music with the scent of candles burning throughout the house.
  • Finding joy and happiness in talking about origins of our decorations- the homemade sequined and beaded ornaments that my Mom made so many years ago, the needlepoint ornaments that I made while single and living in the desert, the Baccarat crystal angel from my former regionals (they knew me so well), the many gift ornaments from customers, vendors, colleagues, friends. The many Reindeer, Nutcrackers, Santa’s, Stockings, and so much more acquired over the years from various venues.  So many wonderful stories behind the decorations. Some ornaments even go back to my early years at I. Magnin!
  • Enjoying dinner or lunch with special friends.
  • Thinking of where our travels will take us next year – fondly remembering our last Xmas in Alaska, our Thanksgiving this year in Bhutan
  • Sending off Xmas cards commemorating our travels this year to family and friends and wishing everyone Joy Love and Peace.. 
  • Receiving Xmas cards from friends and family near and far in varying formats – cards, emails, texts, voice messages, social media.
  • Seeing and enjoying the festivities and decorations at local resorts, especially the Gingerbread display at the Ritz Carlton.
  • Taking the time to watch the gorgeous sunsets unfold before our eyes.
  • Hearing the waves crash during high surf warnings, especially early morning and late evening.

All incredible times making special memories. The joy, love, peace and good will of the season permeates through everything.

Try to keep that feeling alive and within you even when shopping at the busy mall, ordering that last minute gift on line, grocery shopping, driving in traffic, rushing to catch that plane.

Remember the memories being made. Relish the experiences. Cherish the moments.

May LOVE + LIGHT + HARMONY + PEACE + JOY + COMPASSION surround you.

Enjoy this Holiday season and make yours special in whatever fashion you choose, creating new memories forever.

With Light and Love,

Karen

Joy Love Peace

Our Holiday card this year reflects our feelings and emotions which have been heightened  by our recent adventure in Bhutan.

We were transported back in time to experience cultures and traditions, see sights and hear sounds totally different than ours.
We did not have cell service (by choice) and only used WiFi for a limited time at the hotels to check on things.
Our days were spent hiking to monasteries, temples, dzongs (fortresses), farmers markets, villages, Buddhist Universities and more. The people, culture, spirit and beauty of the land is ever present and felt so good! Everywhere you see prayer flags and prayer wheels that we would turn to send off blessings to all.

We had to adjust to the altitude variances from low of approx 2500 feet up to 9300 feet with the ascent to Tigers Nest. (Our commitment to healthy living, especially daily running and hiking at home, definitely helped us).

We hiked slowly, climbing over rocks and uneven terrain, watching where and how we placed our boots.
Our guide whistled while we followed his lead.
Sometimes conversation, sometimes not.
We were surrounded in Peace, Harmony and Beauty.

Life appeared to be simple. Of course in the capital city of Thimpu is was more built up. However you are always close to nature, green forests, mountains, rivers and streams.

As we walked through the monasteries, we heard the monks chanting prayers and performing their rituals.

Joy Love Peace

My husband and I continue to feel the presence of Bhutan within us and surrounding us.
Even with the pace and festivities of the Holidays, we remain calm and spend more time enjoying living at the beach, the beauty of the ocean, the waves crashing, the sunsets.

We are blessed and thankful.

May this Holiday season also bring you Joy Love and Peace for now and always.

With Light and Love,
Karen