Gone Fishing

Happy Father’s Day to all the fathers in the world! Know that your love, support, guidance and encouragement has forever impacted others lives.

Parents  are role models for children to learn how to be and act. They help mold our thoughts and dreams, ambitions and desires.  Through their words and actions, we internalize and make decisions for our futures.  

My father loved to fish.  He would go out with his brother on the lake many times.  It was always interesting that when he returned, there were no fish!!!! When I asked where they were, he would say I tossed them back into the water.  I had a hard time understanding this practice.  It wasn’t until we went out together years later that I understood. Being out on the boat, on the water, was his “Happy Place.”  It was his “escape” from the world, from his business.  A time to truly be with himself.  The quiet, calmness, peacefulness of being one with nature was truly special.  It was his way of recharging his Spirit.  

I too find peace and comfort out in nature.  Now, I give thanks for living at the beach, enjoying running along the water’s edge, feeling the sand below, watching the seagulls, dolphins, surfers and others.  It is my “Happy Place.”  What is your “Happy Place?”

I give thanks to my Dad for showing me how important it is to take the time to refresh and recharge.  

With LIght and Love,

Karen

 

“Every wall is a door.” –Ralph Waldo Emerson

In deciding what to write about today, I came across this quote.  I totally got it.  So often we put up walls and confine ourselves for whatever reason we make up.  We limit our exposure to endless possibilities and new opportunities. However I have always been one to recommend tearing down the wall, or creating a space for the door.  We get to choose.  We get to decide how to build our world.  Whether it is an imaginary door or a real one, it is important to have one.

A wall blocks the outside from coming in.  Wikipedia states that “A wall is a structure that defines an area, carries a load; provides security, shelter, or soundproofing; or is decorative. There are many kinds of walls, including: Walls in buildings that form a fundamental part of the superstructure or separate interior rooms, sometimes for fire safety.”

I believe a wall should have a door or at least a window – have an opening so I can freely come and go and see outside.  I do not want to be confined.  I do not want to feel trapped.  I can appreciate feeling safe, having shelter, and being protected.  However I want my spaces to incorporate inside and outside.  I want to freely access all areas.  I want to visualize a window or door being opened.  I want to explore what is beyond the wall. I want to experience, learn and grow by actively living in this world – not being confined.  

I realize that walls are sometimes necessary.  However, make sure that some of them have the window or door. Give yourself breathing room. Realize that you have the ability to go through the door to find new opportunities and experiences. You can expand your space by breaking through to the other side.

Look around at your walls.  Decide where your window or door will be. For there is opportunity outside waiting for you. There is a world of unlimited possibilities and experiences. 

Let’s open our doors and windows together and embrace all that Life offers. Happy exploring.

With Light and Love,

Karen

 

Me Time

Sometimes we just need to sleep!  Yesterday was that kind of day.  I guess I had been pushing it. My husband and I just returned from an incredible holiday in Japan,. To re-acclimate to our time zone, I jumped right back into running every day except Sundays which is a walk day.  However I ended up running 7 days in a row, in foggy weather somewhat cooler than I am used to.  So what happened? I got a bit chilled and starting sneezing.  My body was telling me to slow down and get some rest.  I tried to ignore it a bit, but by 7:30 last night I decided to go to bed.  I doubled up with comforters and socks and snuggled in.  It felt so good even though I was sneezing and congested at first.  Maybe it took a little longer to finally fall asleep, but sleep I did!

12 hours later I am refreshed and ready to take on a new day. My sinuses are clear and I am back to being me.

Lesson? Listen to your body.  Don’t get upset when you feel out of sorts.  Do what you need to do to recover and recharge.  Forget the guilt.  It is okay.  Take the time to replenish and nourish yourself.  It could be sleeping, reading, walking in nature, listening to music, hearing a motivational and inspirational speaker, painting, writing,  planting flowers, baking.  So many wonderful experiences to rejuvenate yourself. For it is only when we feel good that we can assist and give to others.

Happy healing!

With Light and Love,

Karen

Memorial Day

Today in the US, we honor and show our respect for those who have served our country to protect our freedom, our rights and our independence.

I give thanks.

However I am not a believer of war.  I believe in peace, harmony, collaboration, and calmness.  I realize though, that in order to achieve those states, it may be necessary to engage in unethical behavior.  Why?  Because everyone does not think and act like I do.  There are those that are wired differently.  They thrive on principles that are dangerous and create disharmony, unrest, and turbulence. They do not listen to reason.  They do not respect others views and thoughts.  So how else is one to overcome other than by force?

It is unfortunate. It is reality.  It is happening today.  It has happened in the past.  It will continue to happen in the future.  However, I pray that one day, we can rise above and truly “Live as One.” (John Lennon – Imagine)

So today, enjoy the day.  Be with family and friends. Do what makes you happy.  Take a walk, go for a run, enjoy being in nature.  Go surfing, swimming, cycling, horseback riding. Have a picnic (but don’t eat too much!). Go shopping. Go to the movies.  Listen to music. Plant some flowers. Be thankful and appreciate our freedoms. Do what you want to do and be thankful that you can. 

With Light and Love,

Karen

 

TRICK – It’s New Meaning

I just learned a great acronym for the word Trick.

  • T  Trust   
  • R  Respect
  • I   Independence
  • C  Collaboration
  • K  Kindness

I read about the meaning in an article about Esther Wojcick, longtime educator and matriach of the Silicon Valley family.((mother of Susan Wojcicki (the CEO of YouTube), Janet Wojcicki (a Fulbright winner), and Anne Wojcicki, cofounder of 23andMe)). She developed this clever and catchy acronym a while ago and includes it in her new book, How to Raise Successful People: Simple Lessons for Radical Results.  It is one of her secrets to cultivating effective and ethical leaders.The book offers essential lessons for raising, educating, and managing people to their highest potential.

I especially appreciate how she included kindness into the equation.  In the work environment too often this powerful trait is looked at as weak or not important.  However the opposite is really the truth – being kind to others in your word, tone, and manner, shows your compassion and empathy, which makes us more connected. That is incredibly powerful and so needed in the work place.

These abilities are key to a leaders success.  They help one build a true team that can accomplish anything set in front of them.  It allows for each member to shine,  to speak their truth, to make a contribution, to remain curious and ask questions, to experiment with processes and to find their path.

We all want to be heard.  We all want to feel appreciated.  We all want to be acknowledged.  Sure, we may make mistakes.  That is how we learn.  That is how we grow.  That is how we identify the best next step. So allow your team to flourish and be.  Monitor them, give constructive feedback, keep them on track, but most important, give them space. Allow them to think for themselves, stumble and fall, and get back up.  You will be pleasantly surprised and proud of what they will be able to accomplish!

If you are a leader in the workplace, reflect on whether you exemplify TRICK.  If you do, congratulations. If not, then I would encourage you to find out more and experiment with it.

Outside of the work environment, can TRICK also be helpful.  Absolutely! It applies to all relationships – professional, personal, private and public, crossing all boundaries and walls. With your children, parents, spouses and partners, siblings and friends. Everyone. We all deserve to be treated and to treat others using the TRICK technique.

With Love and Light,

Karen

 

 

 

Inspired by Melinda Gates

Over the last few days, I have been inspired by articles and interviews about Melinda Gates.  With the launch of her book, The Moment of Lift, the press coverage has been incredible.  And for good reason.

She is a powerful, compassionate, successful and influential woman who has done remarkable work on behalf of women, children, health, education and so much more.

Alongside her husband, they have committed their life to helping others and to improve the lives of everyone.  Their foundation has made substantial investments into so many good causes that are positively impacting the world. What better way to spend the fortune they have created?

What strikes me is Melinda’s genuine concern for others.  She is determined to get to the truth and truly understand the issues.  She listens.  Really listens.  Through listening and learning, we are able to better determine the best next steps to resolve the challenges.  And we uncover other potential problems as well that need our attention.

Melinda is a great storyteller!  She is honest and relatable.  She is not hesitant to tell us of her conflicts, frustrations, and how she dealt with them.

She stands up for her rights and is the voice for others that may not be able to speak out as freely.  

I so respect her drive, enthusiasm, and determination.  I will next read her book and after digesting it, I will look at how I can better serve others.

In my own way, what can I do to Lift up others.  For we all can.  In our own way, we make a difference.  

I had a professor once that said as long as he reached one student – it was all worthwhile.

What difference will you make?

Here’s to your Moment of Lift!

With Love and Light,

Karen 

 

Persistence

In the morning during our coffee time together, my husband and I talk about what is on our mind, what revelations have we had, how we feel, the outline of the day, and so much more.  My husband’s thought today was the power of Persistence.

Why is persistence important? Can we succeed without it?  Does it really help us or hinder us?

I have always attributed my accomplishments and successes to my persistence!  Once I set my mind to something, develop the strategy and set the objectives, I usually stay focused and determined to see it through. I added that dedication and commitment are 2 traits that also strengthen the ability to remain persistent.

Sometimes it is not easy.  There are twists and turns, U turns and detours. Uphills to climb and downhills to slide.  Doors open and close.  The weather changes.  I experience all kinds of feelings – joy, happiness, frustration, upset, defeat, self doubt, criticism, always though, keeping my determination. The way I handle these feelings is to say a mantra, like “:I can do this.”

All achievements take persistence.  Before, during, and after.  Too often we may think that once we achieve our objective, we can then go onto the next.  True, however we cannot forget to continue doing the work on all our intentions. Persistence gives us the strength to do what is necessary to continue obtaining the results we desire.

  • In riding a bicycle, you need to continue pedaling. And sometimes you get a flat tire. Sometimes you fall off.  However you get back up.
  • In planting flowers, you need to water, fertilize, weed and nourish. Some plants flourish, some get diseased. You learn what works and make adjustments.
  • Running a race, you need to continue putting one foot in front of the other. Positive self talk strengthens and motivates you. As does deep breathing and mantras.
  • When creating – be it writing, painting, sculpting, building, baking…… you want to bring to the world your inspirations. Sometimes you get stuck and have to start again gaining a new perspective. Sometimes you want to just quit.  But that little voice within knows you can do it.
  • When you want to lose weight, you set a goal, adjust your diet and change your lifestyle to include exercise.  You are doing great, then you decide to stop and revert to your former habits.  What happens?  The weight comes back. You stopped being persistent in achieving your goals.  

Sound familiar?  We have all been there, done that.  What is important is that we learn the lessons.  In order to keep the achievement alive, we use our persistence to maintain it.  We develop the right habits and routines that nourish us and sustain us.

We stay dedicated, determined and commit to success!

Here’s to your Persistence!

With Light and Love,

Karen

 

 

  

 

Doing the Dishes

I just read an article about Bill and Melinda Gates doing the dishes together. I had read before that Bill enjoys doing them alone and how he went into a very zen state. He considered it very therapeutic and meditative.

The article discusses the importance of sharing chores and how that impacts the balance in a relationship.  I can personally vouch for that.  My husband is the dishwasher in our house!  I do the prep and cooking.  He does the clean up. Even though we have a dishwasher, since it is just the 2 of us, it is easier to do the dishes by hand.  My husband enjoys listening to music or a book while mindfully washing.  

In every relationship, be it personal or professional, there should be agreements on how the “work” is to be done.  Communication is key to understanding.  Nothing should be taken for granted. There is a give and take.  And sometimes we could switch off.  Trade places.  Rebalance the responsibilities.

In today’s world, the labels of “Man’s work versus Woman’s work” is not relevantt anymore. Just because it has been one way for generations, does not mean that it needs to be the same way now.

We all possess both female and male characteristics.  However, some may not feel comfortable thinking that way or showing their true natures. When one suppresses their nature, resentments can build up.

Free yourself of what has been.  Do what feels right.  If you love to cook, then cook.  If you love to do the laundry, do the laundry.  It does not matter whether those tasks were once only done by a female or male.  Do what suits you. 

And remember, the objective is to share the responsibilities. Be a true partner. Be a member of the team. (TEAM = Together Everyone Achieves More).

Happy sharing!

With Light and Love,

Karen

 

 

 

 

 

Walking with Purpose

Walking is a great form of exercise.  Just about everyone can do it. It does not take much gear other than the right clothes and right athletic shoes.  You can do it indoors – however I much prefer being outdoors.  One can listen to music or hear the birds, wind, and waves.  One can excite all the senses as you see, hear, touch, smell and even taste your surroundings.
Set your own pace and go! Some days may be a fast pace, other days slower.  Mix it up.  Some days go up hill, go down hill, just do it.  I prefer walking on the sand beaches or trails in our neighborhood- however sidewalks work just as well.  The important thing is to do it – and ideally every day. Invigorating!
It is also a great time to devote to reflection and renewal. Your walk can become your Walking Meditation.  Set an intention. This is your time.  Yes – if outdoors, be aware of crosswalks, lights, traffic and other pedestrians.  And be aware of all your thoughts and feelings.
A long time friend of my husband’s and now mine, shared the following with me regarding his daily walk.
“Surprisingly the most spiritual part of my day is an eight minute walk from my house to Crunch. This is where I work out. Reason being I want to be clear and focused for my work out. This is my preparation.  I try to refrain from any thinking processes. That would be dinner, who is joining me, movies, TV, what was said to me yesterday, all of those things.  None of these things are now and not part of my preparation. The importance of my eight minute walk is a major issue.  Sometimes you and Charles join me but it doesn’t deter, it helps.  But just you two so I arrive at Crunch clear and focused.  Now I’m ready for the best workout possible.  It of course will vary from day to day.  Sometimes part of my workout on my lifecycle will be 20 minutes and then sometimes an hour.  But I still remain clear and focused.   Lately I’ve been doing 5 miles in 35 minutes.  It can also take 45 minutes depending on my rpm’s.  Like I say it varies.  But I’m there everyday.  So that takes care of before, during and now after.  After has to do with how I feel about what I just accomplished.  And of course it feels right to me.”

I want to acknowledge Michael for sharing his daily ritual with me and now you.  And congratulations to Michael for celebrating his 80th birthday recently!  What I loved about his sharing was how he utilized the 8 minutes to center and focus himself for his workout.  He prepared.  He got himself in the right mental state to then maximize his exercise program.   

Next time you find yourself in a walking mode, how will you use the time?
With Love and Light,
Karen

Double Yolks

Last night I cracked open 2 eggs for dinner.  And to my surprise, both eggs had double yolks!

When I get a double yolk which I do from time to time, I get excited. I see it as a sign of Good Luck and Prosperity.  However in looking up its significance, especially since I had never cracked 2 at the same time, I found several other possible meanings. The first was someone or you were going to have twins.  Well that’s out having turned 65 last year!  And no one that I know as of this moment is pregnant.  Then the 2nd meaning was a family member was ready to die.  I took a moment to pray for everyone and wish them good health.  At present, all appear to be doing well. And perhaps the meaning of dying was not in the physical form. It could be regarding someone’s old beliefs and patterns no longer serving them.

I intend to focus on the most positive and uplifting message of having Good Luck and Prosperity. I thanked the Universe for the blessing of the double yolks and their significance. I know I have a choice in what I believe.  You do too!

Every moment we create our Life.  What are you choosing to believe, dream, create, accomplish, fulfill? What drives you? What energizes you? What motivates you?  Sure there are outside influences that could present detours along the way.  However you are powerful enough, strong enough, wise enough, and determined enough to make it happen the way you want.

We have the ability to shift our thinking to what serves us best. Not what others think, but what we think.  So the next time you crack open your eggs and get a double yolk or 2, Think Good Luck, Prosperity, and the Limitless Possibilities.

With Light and Love,

Karen