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!

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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

Is More Really Better?

MORE-is-better-Pamela-Chrabieh

During this Holiday season, one of the to do’s – is to shop, shop, shop for perfect gifts.
It should be a fun, happy experience.

However so many feel stressed with the number of gifts to buy for each person on their list, and how much money it will cost.
And the email, social media, and marketing messages keep coming and coming! Hurry Hurry! 2 Days only!  For a Limited time!  20% off everything!  50% off today only!  Just for You!
Just Click Click Click.  Never been easier to buy and keep buying. So we do.

However, is More really Better?

A personalized, thoughtful and meaningful gift touches the receiver in so many ways.
They feel the love and know it came from your heart.

Sometimes just a card will do.
So many beautiful, well written ones are on the market – and you can also make your own.
The choices are endless.

Give thought to your shopping list. Don’t just do it because you always have.
A carefully selected gift – and not one that needs to be expensive – can bring so much joy and create memories.

If you are a great baker, give a gift of your specialties.
If you are into crafts, make a special ornament.
If you are a writer, gift your books.
Find out what a person’s interests are.
If someone loves beauty products, you can find that perfect lipstick shade or eyeshadow palette.
If they like fragrances, gift them with a new scent.
If you love being with friends and family, host a party or get together.
Make a donation to your favorite charity or cause.

As I was decorating our home, and carefully unwrapping the ornaments, I cherished and smiled at every one of the decorations.  Incredible memories of places, people, and underlying it all – LOVE. I felt it.  It surrounded me.  So beautiful.  With holiday music in the background, the scents of pine and fir throughout the house, the twinkling of lights – all so magical.

That is the true meaning of the holidays.  Share Love, Be Kind, Show Compassion, Be at Peace, Find your Joy, Help Others in Need.

Embrace the Season with all the festivities.
And remember to Enjoy.  Reduce your stress.  More is not Better.

With Love and Light,
Karen

Turbulence

turbulence

Unsteady movement, conflict, confusion.

On a recent flight from Hong Kong to Los Angeles, the pilot announced before departing that we would make record time with the tail winds, however we would also experience more turbulence!  And yes, he was so right.

The Good with the Bad
Ying and Yang
Black and White
Sour and Sweet
Cold and Hot
Left and Right

Opposites do co-exist and at times join together.

I chanted and prayed quite a bit during that 12 hour flight in which we did experience long lasting turbulence.  I realized that in our day to day life, we also experience similar turbulence.
It could appear as emotional or physical discomfort.
It could be something visually scary or unpleasant.
It could be barking dogs, noise from trees being cut down, thunder, wind, cars honking, sirens blaring.

So many outside influences that can disturb us.

However I have found that all these things are part of living.
It is how I choose to handle them, react to them, that make the difference in my state of being.

So as I chanted and prayed through the flight turbulence, I promised myself that I would use similar techniques when dealing with the turbulence in life.

Take a moment to breathe. Acknowledge what is happening. Make the decision of how to handle it that will keep you the most calm.

As we are in the Holiday Season with all its festivities, joy, love, harmony and celebration, Remember that we could also feel confused, lonely, overwhelmed, stressed, and pressured.

Take a moment to step back.  Reassess the situation.  Write down your plan of action.  Ask for help.  Delegate.  Say “NO”.

You can handle it.

It may be a bit rocky at times, but you will get to the other side.
The turbulence is only temporary.

With Love, Peace, Harmony and Joy,
Karen

Holiday Happiness

Holiday-Happiness

‘Tis the Season!     For what you ask?
It is usually said…
To be Jolly
To be Happy
To be Merry and Bright
To buy, buy, buy presents
To decorate, decorate, decorate
To eat and drink and then eat and drink some more
Sometimes though it is…
To be stressed
To be overwhelmed
To be tired
To be depressed
To be lonely
What if we focus on…
To be Thankful
To be at Peace
To take the time to Recharge
To go out in Nature
To show Gratitude
To be Appreciative of the Magic of the Season
So in this Holiday Season, remember to find your balance.
Go out and enjoy all the festivities, acknowledge when you do not feel up to it, and refresh by tuning into yourself, finding comfort and happiness in the quiet.
Happy Holidays,
With Light and Love,

Karen

 

Giving Thanks

roseparadeveges

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
At this time of year, we celebrate. We give thanks for all our blessings and in remembrance of and gratitude for the Pilgrims first harvest in the New World in 1621.
We all celebrate in different ways, however family, friends, food, and gratitude seem to be consistent with everyone.
However, this year seems more challenging, especially with recent events.
The impact of the fires here in California and the recent shootings, have devastated communities and families. What is beautiful is hearing how everyone is coming together to help in whatever way they can. People are putting their differences aside to assist and be neighborly, showing compassion, empathy and support.
Why does it take tragedy to bring out the best in people?
We are all one.
What happens affects everyone.
The destruction of complete communities will take years to repair.  Can one really go back? Some find it healing to rebuild, others will move on.
We all deal with Life in our own way.  There is no Right way- it is Your way.
Do what is best for you.
Follow your truth. Listen to your heart.
Do what you can to help others. A Smile and Hello go a long way.
And at this time of year, give Thanks.  Do not take anything for granted.  In an instant, it could all change. Give thanks for being alive, for your health, abundance and inner peace.
I continue giving Thanks everyday for my life and for being a cancer survivor and thriver.
I start my morning, before getting out of bed, with my affirmations, being thankful and appreciative.
I am grateful to awaken to a brand new day and I intend on making the most of it.
And at night, I give thanks and appreciation for the day, for my continued good health and well being.
So, however you celebrate this Thanksgiving, remember to send healing blessings to all and give thanks for this gift of Life.
With Light and Love,
Karen