Archive | January 2013

Beauty Abound

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“R 

ainbows, spiderwebs, sunsets…the world is full of wonder if only you look.”

 

      Some days are just blah or even ugly when it seems there’s no beauty to be found anywhere. But even those days have small specks of beauty glimmering in places you may not expect to find beauty. When we think of the concept of “beauty” or “beautiful” we often think of explicit or obvious beauty like a beautiful person or a lovely dress or a bouquet of wedding flowers or a splendid garden. Or songs and music. Or a poem maybe.

      But there are more subtle forms of beauty, things that we often overlook and maybe even at first glance do not appear to be beautiful until we actually look closer, deeper, or think about it.

   If you can hear, you probably hear cars everyday driving by, screeching, beeping, you probably hear people talking outside your house, you hear the soft humming of the refrigerator, the white noise of your tv, the static of your radio….all these commonplace things we tend to forget are actually beautiful sounds and things. What if you lost your hearing temporarily and then you regained it, you would realize this. But hopefully people will come to realize without going deaf. Icesickles hanging off of cars, rainbows in dripping car oil, spiderwebs woven in the corners of a room, the smile of a stranger, the ticking of a clock…all of these little things can provoke wonder & awe. 

      Beauty doesn’t even have to be things we experience directly through the senses. It can be thoughts or feelings also. I think we all occasionally find that beautiful things just happen to “jump out” at us. We just see or hear or feel them without looking.

      But how many of us have actually developed the positive habit of actually *looking* for beautiful things hidden and glimmering in the corners of darkness or ugliness or plainness? I believe we should all cultivate this habit if we want to be inspired and happier more often.

      I love to take in the world around me when I go for walks outside. I frequently take pictures of anything that screams out at me and captivates me. Leaves on trees or the ground, flowers in someone’s flowerpots, the sky in all its various appearances, weeds, plants, lights, designs, birds, squirrels…..

      My mom & sister often get annoyed going out with me because I stop every other second to snap a picture of something I find to be very lovely.

      The tan weeds in my pictures, I find to be astoundingly beautiful but my mom and sister see them as just old dead weeds! Lol!

And look at the gorgeousness of that sky!! If you try you will find specks of platinum among the sand and dirt.

 

“Nothing is insignificant.”. ~Samuel T. Coleridge

 

“See the good all around you, even if you have to squint.”

 

 

Xox0 Kim ❤ 😀

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She believed she could so she did

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   “By being yourself, you put something wonderful in the world that was not there before”~ Edwin Elliot. 

 

“Don’t cheat the world of your contribution. Give it what you’ve got.” –Steven Pressfield

 

“You can be greater than anything that can happen to you.” ~Norman Vincent Peale

 

      Here is a disorganized, beautiful wreck of my thoughts on how pain can be our motivation and inspiration.

And how we can bring more joy and happiness into our world.

      I have a wildly, passionate, pulsating desire, longing, need to help others help themselves heal whatever pain they are experiencing. I want people to empower themselves and overcome whatever restraints may be holding them back and making them not live fully and passionately and happily. And.       

      I hope that you who are reading this can find something that is useful to you and use it to help yourself and even share with others to help them.

     I believe any negative experience that rips us apart, breaks us, steals a part of us that we feel we can never reclaim, swindles our days, months, and/or years, saps our strength, even threatens our sense of personal identity, no matter how painful, no matter how agonizing can turn out to be the catalyst for change for the better. It can give us the opportunity to better ourself, rebuild ourself to stand even stronger than before that pain and destruction.

      And for me, the way to allow this painful experience to give way to positive change and the opportunity to rebuild and strengthen myself is to cultivate and maintain a general confident, grateful, positive, “unstoppable” attitude. Stop at nothing. Be your own advocate. Know that you are worth it. Empower yourself. Whatever you experienced. Whatever you did. Wherever you were. You can change now for the better. You can move on and never look back except to see how much progress you have accomplished and bring the lessons you learned with you wherever you are now and wherever you will go. You are in control.

      Deep inside you know what you need. What you want. Your heart’s truest longings and desires. Look deep within. Look around you. What draws you? What pulls you in? What captivates and awes you? What has you spellbound and fills you with wonder & inspiration? Is it a certain place? A certain career or job? A hobby or activity? Certain scenery or decorations? Certain colors or objects? A kind of person you want to be? A certain way of life? What do you see before you and feel in the quietude of your brain when you close your eyes and drown out all the clatter of everyday? What is swirling around and sparkling with chromatic winds in the otherwise dusty, gray, and stagnant recesses of your brain? Whatever it is, go for it, chase it until it’s your reality. You may not get it right away, maybe not even in the immediate future. But if it draws you and has you spellbound, it’s worth the sweat and the tears and the work and the dreaming. And don’t settle for anything less. Don’t settle for mediocre. Work for your best! Don’t be a zombie or a robot and just exist in an almost constant state of gray, monotony, BE ALIVE. Remember how you felt when you accomplished something amazing, maybe something you thought you maybe never could?        

 

      Remember that incredible thrill that you tapped into at some points in your life? A genuine thrill. Maybe when you finally graduated, or maybe when you gave birth to or adopted your child or adopted a new pet, or got your very first job or promotion or a new car or even just a new, amazing outfit or pair of shoes, maybe when you got accepted into a program or moved out on your own or got an A on a difficult exam…then the novelty wore off and you still loved those things/people but they’re no longer new, the thrill sort of dimmed a little. 

And you may think you need big things to happen to feel that way again.

       But the good news is you can learn to tap into that novel feeling, that thrill almost whenever you want over various things, big and simple things. You can get thrilled and inspired over small simple things by developing positive habits that will assist you in your quest to overcome your routine, monotonous ways. That’s not to say you will or should live everyday in complete ecstasy or mania but you can be thrilled and ecstatic more often and love the things you do! :-D. Stop to notice and appreciate the simple things. The morning dew drops on the tips of leaves, the veins of life running through the leaves and the ones running through you, your wrists, the vibrancy of the colors of the sky and flowers. The sounds that stroke your core, music, cars screeching in the streets, taste your food, mindfully, salty, sour, sweet, bitter. Deliciousness. Feel the textures of everything you touch. The softness of skin, the comfort of your blankets, your animal’s fur. And take in all the fragrances of life. Perfume, rain, mist, cookies or cupcakes baking, citrus or lavender. Appreciate and love and cherish your senses. Feel blessed and grateful for them. They are five of your greatest gifts. Five beautiful gifts that you probably overlook every single second of every single day, yet they are your greatest mechanisms for experiencing this world, this life. Make a habit of doing this more often and it will open you up to what feels like a brand new world, one of joy, awe, wonder, and inspiration.

 

Now back to your dreams… 

      You don’t even have to have it be one hundred percent clear to you right now exactly what you want and need; you can just have a basic idea and do some exploring in and around yourself.

      You can read books, flip through magazine pages, visit places, browse clothing or knick knack aisles in stores, antiques or flea markets, read on the internet, engage in various activities to see what captures your heart, what you want to be yours, what you want to be you. Meditate. Focus on your source of life, your breath, don’t force any certain kind of breathing, just focus on the natural process. It may feel weird and unpleasant at first but you’ll get used to it. Try different things out to see if it’s for you.  

      And believe you have what it takes to eventually accomplish and realize this.

Maybe you want to graduate college and have a big, impressive career. Maybe you want to travel across the world, or maybe you want to take certain non-credited classes to learn to draw, sing, cook, sew, or take photographs. Overcome a health condition of any kind or exercise more. Or maybe you just want to learn how to decorate your house or be a better you all around. Whatever it is you will not grasp it, become it, live it if you don’t take the first steps and then the next and the next until you embrace it and it’s you.

      We can’t all have everything we want. We have limitations. But just because we cannot have or accomplish a specific something does not mean we cannot accomplish something else we want or love. I love the idea of singing and wish I could but the truth is my voice is not a singing voice. Lol. And I would love to be able to draw beautifully but I usually cannot; it’s just my fantasy. But that doesn’t stop me so I cannot find something else that I love that can be my reality.

     I have come to realize this through my quest to better myself and escape the grasp and bondage of Depression which I have grappled with since I was a young girl. Mild, low-grade depression progressed to severe, full-blown episodes of Major Depression and I have also experienced occasional psychotic breaks and hospitalizations, years of psychotherapy and drug therapy. Years lost to pain, anguish, agony, hopelessness, and a strong sense of helplessness and no direction, self-loathing, and despair. I was at the lowest depths of my despair when I finally realized my ONLY way is up. There was no other option for me that I would settle for. I refused to stay that way, refused to lose my life to the disease that has ravaged my brain for years. So I became my advocate and my hero, my nurturer, my own caregiver and I went to war over myself, for myself, and chose to stop. At nothing. Stop at nothing. Until I am where I want to be and I still choose not to stop. I am still going. Still going strong. I make this a life-long commitment. This was/is not always easy. But it is not all unpleasant. And is well worth it.

       I get to watch myself grow, feel myself evolve. I see progression and light where I once saw darkness through myself imposed prison bars. And I help others along the way.

      Depression has the tendency to extinguish the will to live and survive and it hinders motivation and inspiration and makes us believe we are not worth anything, like we’re not worth the struggle. But I let the pain inspire me and motivate me as difficult as it can be. I let the struggle itself be my motivation and inspiration. My pain is my motivation.

Through the eyes of depression, there is no motivation. There is no inspiration in anything. There’s no will. Through the lenses of depression at its most severe form, there’s often nothing that can motivate or inspire. No people, no activities, no jobs, no thoughts, no books. So what to do? Take the very pain itself, the LACK of motivation and inspiration and let that be THE motivation itself.

      Depression took away everything I ever was but I took it back. I took myself back. I reclaimed my goddess within, my inner hero. I sparked my inner song, the one in my bones. 

      Take a look at your negative, self-limiting thoughts. Did you create them or did someone else program them into your head? Or did an experience instill them into you? Why are those thoughts bad for you? Are they good for anything other than bringing you down and causing you to hurt or suffer? If someone else programmed those useless, negative, life draining thoughts into your head, get them out now! They don’t belong there. No one but you belongs in that head of YOURS! Did someone tell you long ago, maybe as a child, or young adult, or maybe even recently, that you aren’t good enough or you aren’t beautiful and you have internalized it and carry it around with you til this day?

      Reprogram those thoughts that do not serve you for the best. Practice. Practice. Practice. Un-install them and then install new, self affirming thoughts and beliefs. If you created these thoughts in your own head, why? (This is not a judgmental “why?”. I want you to think about how those thoughts may have served you somehow at one point but not anymore or maybe they never did.) What did they once mean for you? If they no longer or never have served a positive purpose for you, abandon them. And replace them with positive, tender, self-loving thoughts and beliefs that serve you well. Write them down. List them. Dwell on them. When you have a negative thought about yourself, counter it with three positive thoughts or more. Of course you have flaws or perceived flaws, who doesn’t? That’s no reason to verbally/mentally bash yourself no matter what is true or not. What do you WANT to think and believe about yourself as opposed to what you currently think and believe? Your opinion of yourself matters. Your negative thoughts about you are NOT irreplaceable. You CAN vanquish them and replace them. You are a sentient being. You can feel, think, and experience. You deserve your love and compassion. So bestow it upon yourself. It may not happen now or overnight but you can do this.

      Whatever negative, painful experience(s) took a toll on you and coerced you into believing negative things about yourself and saying and thinking unpleasant and unnecessary criticism about you, take that experience and go the other way. Instead of looking at how it broke you or destroyed you, take a look at how it has the potential to gift you, to guide you, to energize you. To allow you to strengthen and rebuild yourself. I have experienced severe verbal/emotional abuse along with my depression for many years that broke me, destroyed me, defeated me but then I learned to take that agonizing experience and use it to MY advantage. I will write more in depth about this experience in future entries but for now I will just touch on it briefly to demonstrate how pain can be transformed into motivation and positive energy.

      You may never completely get over the scars of a painful experience but you CAN get yourself better. Scars are ok even though they can be painful; they’re part of living. And they can remind you. of the battle you survived and won!

      I believe my depression is partially chemical and partially environmental, having to do with certain situations and thoughts. I take medication to correct the imbalance but it doesn’t stop there. I can’t pop happy pills and everything is ok. Pills just strengthen my ability to be able to cope but my thinking, my actions, my way of life is what really contributes to my fullest sense of recovery and quality of life.

      I have made a conscious decision to intentionally maintain a positive attitude/life even when it’s not easy, even when it nearly seems impossible. This doesn’t mean never having a negative thought; it doesn’t mean literally only having cheery thoughts and happy ideas. It means also handling negative thoughts, situations, and emotions in a healthy, positive, effective way. Like writing, reading, listening to music, therapy, arts & crafts, friends, talking, anything healthy, eliminating negativity when I can, knowing it’s only temporary. Knowing that happiness is often found within but factors outside the self like books, people, activities…can help bring it out and build on it. It would be absurd and dishonest to myself and others to claim I only have or even try to only have pure cheerful, happy thoughts and feelings. Lol. Not happening!

But I do more frequently than not try to keep my glass 99.9 % full! Lol. And I try not to complain unnecessarily. But venting is ok, even necessary every now and then. Negative thoughts and emotions are inevitable and it is important to express them in a healthy manner. I have a gratitude journal, a positive journal, and a positive outlook in general.

And I see how negative events and situations can be manipulated into positive energy whether that’s learning something through the experience, letting it strengthen and enlighten me, or using it to teach others. Or just letting it be a reminder and indication that I am in fact alive and life comes with difficult struggles & situations even through the immense beauty.

      Since I am prone to bouts of severe depression I must work hard to keep up a positive outlook more than average so a normal low mood does not increment into full blown illness. But I want to help everyone, even those who have never personally known major depressive disorder. I believe everyone can benefit through the power of positive thinking and action.

      When you do not know the impending outcome of something, try not to assume the worst. Why assume the worst when you can assume the best? You may be disappointed if you expect the best and the worst does happen but occasional disappointment to me is better than a gloomy life of expecting bad things frequently. Disappointment can be dealt with and handled. And think in your head that even if the worst does in fact happen, you can and WILL see it through and maybe even learn a few lessons. You can even let your negative and painful experiences be your motivation to get better, heal, and then help others who are now in the painful situation you were once in. You have a special qualification now that not everyone has. We do not have to go out purposefully looking for pain and wanting it just so we can learn; that is not my point. But it will occur at some points whether we want it or not and when it does we can & will grasp it, mold it, structure it, and use it to our advantage, NOT let it get the best of us. Make your pain and your negativity your bitch and use it! Lmao! Own it! ;-D 

 Don’t let it own you! It can bend you but don’t let it ever break you any longer. Look at it as a tool that you can use to structure and create something better. Be creative!

      Be an active participant in and engage in your life. Let it be something that responds to you, not something that merely happens to you. Come alive, live, do not just exist. When you think positively, you are more likely to act positively and then attract positivity around you. There is great wisdom in positive thinking and the power of positive thinking will help you manifest the positive potential in your life.

And you can be amazed at the workings of the sparkling positivity and color in your world.

      Positive thinking alone can help uplift you but it’s when it is in combination with positive actions that your brain will be infused with wisdom and light.             

      And for your endeavors to flourish, it’s best to have confidence in yourself and your actions. Know that you have choices and that you are capable. Know that negative moods and thoughts are not permanent; they are mutable. They fluctuate. So when you have negative thoughts and feelings, reprogram them by meditating on positive thoughts. Transform “I can’t” to “I Can!”. And with true practice you will get into the habit of confident positive thinking and have it develop in your way of life, entrenched throughout your being. You will live it. You will breathe it. You will be it.

      Allow your motivation and your burning passion and desire to transcend your feelings of lack of confidence and your laziness or insecurity.

      With this habit, positivity will come easier, naturally, and help dispel negativity. Observe your thoughts as they arise in your head. Look at each one and determine whether or not they can benefit you and if you can use them to your advantage. Will this thought lead to or help aid in your happiness & serenity or to sadness, fear, suffering? Be attentive to your thoughts. Be realistic. Don’t be delusional and set up unattainable, unrealistic goals for yourself; that can lead to unnecessary disappointment and working toward unattainable or unrealistic goals can feel like hopeless drudgery as opposed to feeling enthusiastic and happy and hopeful . (Example: don’t think you can become a billionaire over night; it’s extremely unlikely for almost ANYONE and don’t think you can lose 80 pounds in 24 hours, it’s probably not happening) Start out with smaller goals and steps. Know that things take a while and that you do have limitations. But be optimistic and know that that’s ok.

      Let your brain be steeped in positive thoughts. Let go of negative ones; they are not you, you are not them. Be positive even if you cannot fulfill all of your desires. Don’t allow your happiness and positivity to be conditional. Things come and things go and if your happiness is based upon them and you lose them, you will be unhappy; your happiness will constantly falter.

      I struggle with Major Depressive Disorder with Psychotic Features as well as Temporomandibular joint disorder (tmjd), a currently incurable facial pain disorder with little effective treatments and physical limitations, I cannot always open my jaw, it locks shut, it’s hard to chew even small, soft pieces of food. And the agony of it is so severe and seemingly unbearable that sometimes I literally believe the physical pain itself will physically kill me or drive me insane or knock me out. It sometimes takes a toll on me emotionally. It is bad and I must admit that some moments it gets the better of me. I have thought about losing my life to both disorders but then I told myself No. That will not happen. We all have a unique light like no other. A uniqueness that is possessed by no one but us. Why let my unique light extinguish when I can instead use it to bless others in big or small ways? To make everlasting impacts on anyone I can. Instead of allowing it to dim, I will let it rupture until little loving sparks of it fly in every direction, at every angle and fall upon anyone it can and illuminate the darkness for those it touches.

I won’t use my pain as an excuse to check out of this world or to curl up in solitude, instead I will use it as my motivation to help and touch others who may be struggling or just need an active listener, a friend, an uplifting comment, or a warm and friendly smile, a hug, or maybe a kick in the ass every now and then! 😉 I will use it to be alive; I will use it as an excuse to give even more when I feel like giving up.

      You, too, have a light, a way about you that no one else does. You may not realize this or always feel it or be able to identify it but it’s there. Just like your fingerprints, your unique DNA that you may take for granted and never even think about or realize the individuality of. You have a light that can burst into wild flares and luminous flecks that can sparkle on all those you touch. You are not a copy. You are the original. You are unlike anyone else. We are all similar in some ways and different in various ways. Your thoughts, ideas, creativity, your way of consoling and your friendship all have different angles, different pathways, different aspects and doorways than anyone else’s. 

      Take your light and let it shine on me. It will light me up like nothing else. <3. Your light can shine brighter than the sun and the moon. You never know, it may just be the stars in someone’s midnight sky.

 

 

“Be miserable. Or motivate yourself. Whatever has to be done, it’s always your choice.” –Wayne Dyer

 

“The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, not to worry about the future, nor to anticipate troubles, but to live in the present moment wisely and earnestly.” –Buddha

 

“For true success, ask yourself these four questions: Why? Why not? Why not me? Why not now?” –James Allen

 

“At least three times every day take a moment and ask yourself: What is really important? Have the wisdom and the courage to build your life around your answer.” –Lee Jampolsky

 

“You and I are essentially infinite choice-makers. In every moment of our existence, we are in that field of all possibilities where we have access to an infinity of choices.” –Deepak Chopra

 

“What you are is what you have been, and what you will be is what you do now.” –Buddha

 

“Desire is the starting point of all achievement, not a hope, not a wish, but a keen pulsating desire which transcends everything.” –Napoleon Hill

 

“Don’t wish it were easier, wish you were better.” –Jim Rohn –Mark Twain

 

 “The only man who never makes mistakes is the man who never does anything.” –

Theodore Roosevelt

 

“It is hard to fail, but it is worse never to have tried to succeed.” –Theodore Roosevelt

 

“Victory is always possible for the person who refuses to stop fighting.” –Napoleon Hill –Mike Ditka

 

“By being yourself, you put something wonderful in the world that was not there before.” ~Edwin Elliot

 

“There is so much love in your heart that you could heal the planet.”

~Louise Hay

 

“You are as amazing as you let yourself be. Let me repeat that. You are as amazing as you let yourself be.” ~Elizabeth Alraune

 

“If we really love ourselves, everything in our life works.” ~Louise Hay

 

“If you hear a voice within you say “you cannot paint,” then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced.” ~Vincent Van Gogh

 

“Dreams are renewable. No matter what our age or condition, there are still untapped possibilities within us and new beauty waiting to be born.” ~Dale E. Turner

 

“It is never too late to be what you might have been.” ~George Eliot

 

Will you be the one bringing light to someone cowering in the shadows?

X0xo Kim ❤ 😀 🙂

Serendipity <3

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         I often hear people speak of technology dependence and write about it and how technology actually controls us instead of us controlling it. Some people have a true and serious problem either bordering on addiction or actually being a full-blown technology addiction of some sort that may require professional treatment.

      But even many of us who do not have actual addiction still have some degree of emotional dependence on or attachment to it.  

      I never wanted to admit that about myself. I wanted to believe and claim that I just love it and use it because it’s there and it’s so helpful, fun, and just amazing. I wanted to tell myself and everyone else that I would be perfectly ok without it for a while, I would miss it and mourn it to some degree but that’s all. 

    Then one day recently I had a rude awakening. My dad drove me to work and I got out to open and I left all of my most cherished possessions in his car. My phone, my books, my bag, my iced coffee… I told him I would be right back for them, he said ok, and that quickly he forgot and drove off taking all of my stuff with him.

      All my stuff- gone. My initial emotional reaction was anger. “How could he have been SO STUPID?!!?”. “How can he do this to me??!!”. “WTF?!”. Then came the fear, then the shock, then panic, then grief and mourning. Trembling hands and even chills. Then a kind of sickness dwelling in my chest. I always knew my books and my phone are a significant part of my life. But at this moment I realized just how much a part of me they are. How intertwined I am with them. My phone goes everywhere I go and so do my books. Sometimes I hold them even when I’m not currently using them. Even when I cannot pay my phone bill and my phone service is temporarily discontinued I still have my memos, my music, my pictures, everything else and I know it will eventually be back on. I never even really got my phone for the phone part or text part anyway. I wanted it for the handheld internet and other aspects of it. I don’t literally use my phone every waking second but I know it’s at my fingertips whenever I want it.

      But that day at work my phone was gone. All of my writings, my passwords, my quotes, my songs, and pictures, my books, and I had no way of contacting my dad because I don’t know his number, it’s in my phone contacts, and he lost his phone recently.

      I was sorry all of that stuff was gone but it wasn’t just about that. It’s something that runs deeper than that. I couldn’t pick up my phone or my books when I wanted and the thought of that frightened me. It was unusual, outside my comfort zone. For a few hours at least I was going to have to live outside my comfort zone, the life I knew before and move into a new zone I am not used to. I don’t always have a problem adjusting to change, especially when it’s positive change but this revelation was shocking at first! I was going out of my head, headed for an emotional meltdown. 

   Thoughts raced through my head. “What if I literally go insane?”. “What if I get bored out of my mind if it’s slow today even though I don’t usually get bored?”. “What if I have an amazing idea and cannot write it into my phone?”. “What if I cannot handle just not having the stuff that is constantly with me?”

      Anyone would be disappointed, to say the least, about their stuff being missing and not having all of their info. Anymore. But these thoughts and reactions I was experiencing, to me, seem like signs of a somewhat unhealthy habit or emotional dependence, maybe a kind of insecurity. As soon as the thought of emotional dependence and insecurity crept into my head, I lied to myself right away. I told myself I was just afraid someone would break my dad’s window and steal my stuff. And I would be disappointed, that’s all. 

   I told myself I was disappointed, just a little bit unhappy about the whole thing, that’s all. I did not want to admit it but there was no getting around the truth. It was beyond disappointment. It was beyond mere unhappiness. It was a nightmare. I have been unconsciously viewing certain inanimate objects of mine, such as my phone, as an extension of myself. “Not just my phone, part of ME!!”. Partially because all my writings and helpful quotes are on there. I admitted it. Hard as it was. But they are not me. I am me. I am whole without my phone, even without my writings. To lose that is painful but I will survive.  

      This experience introduced me more intimately to a deeper part of myself. I realized I had unhealthy habits that were scary and I was able to admit that after a while and be strong and am able to overcome. To prevail.

      I don’t have a severe, full-blown addiction like some people so for me it was easier to handle and overcome it. Not everyone can do this without some sort of help.

      I realized I have to examine myself more to see what I am too attached to, what I am viewing as extensions of me that are in fact, not me but external objects of mine.

      I realized so much of me revolves around objects that can easily be lost. I use my phone to write my ideas and share them with people. To store pass words and info that connects me with people. I use my books to read and to better myself. But I can and will be ok, even amazing without my stuff. That’s all it is. Stuff.  

      I can come up with more great ideas even though the ones I may lose are irreplaceable. My brain can generate more greatness. Phones and books can be replaced, they can help but they are not required. And I don’t need them to live. To breathe. To be.

      There are moments I will want to and be so tempted to lie to myself about scary and unpleasant aspects of myself. But I must resist that urge and be truthful and admit so I can work on those potentially detrimental parts of me.

      I must accept, change, and heal. This I can do. This I will do. I will continue to use my stuff and love it but I will control it and my thoughts. It will not control me. This experience taught me to look even deeper within me and observe, analyze, and admit parts of myself that I may deny or neglect. I am grateful for this awakening. It brought me closer to me. Quickly made me stronger when I came to realize I am all I need.

      The only one, the only thing I can count on to make me whole and always be with me is myself and I am enough.

 

   Also this experience pushed me outside of my routine ways. At work when I’m not busy, I usually read my own books and use my phone. But because that stuff wasn’t there then, I decided to explore the books and magazines my manager has there. I found really great stuff! In one magazine I found:

Love Letters Cares

http://loveletterscares.org/#2822

 

An organization that gives people the opportunity to make positive, uplifting, and inspirational cards for kids with life-threatening illnesses. I’m so happy I found this and I will make cards. Every kid deserves an uplifting card to make him/her happy and show someone cares!

      This taught me to go out of my way more to try new things. I love trying new things and learning new things but I don’t always go out of my way as much to actually look for opportunities to find something new. I often just take the chance when I see it but I will be searching more now to see what I can find! I love it when a seemingly negative experience turns out to be a beautiful thing!

Xox0 Kim ❤ 🙂 😀

 

 

P.S. I got all my stuff back at the end of my work shift! It was still a great day without it!

Something tangible {& inspiring}

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      I love little reminders and symbols that represent positive things. No matter how happy & inspired we are in general, there will be days and moments where we are uninspired, ungrateful, angry, stressed, and forget to stop and appreciate the beauty and wonder of the world. I find that little tangible things such as jewelry, totem stones, or pins can give us little doses of inspiration and remind us to stay positive, be happy, and/or that things can be ok and get better.

      I have three bracelets, a ring, and a necklace that all inspire me. The ring says “Love Life” on the outside and “Be Brave” on the inside, the one bracelet says “Love Life” on one side and “Be Brave” on the other, and the other bracelet says “Celebrate Life” and the other says “Strength”. The necklace is a cornucopia heart necklace that reminds me to give thanks for everything, everyday and love what I have and what I am.

      I also used to have a cornucopia pin and two totem stones, one saying “Strength” & one saying “Gratitude.”

 

      JCPenny, Target, and WalMart all sell inspirational jewelry that is not very expensive. I bought some there before for no more than twenty dollars each. They have sterling silver and silver plated rings, necklaces, and bracelets that say or symbolize strength, kindness, courage, determination, love, and so much more.

 

      Also you can read about and order a “Positive Pin” here: http://www.positivepin.com/

 

      I haven’t purchased one yet but I love the idea and will get one soon. Whenever you see the pin it will remind you to be positive.

 

      Here is some jewelry at http://www.walmart.com. I have the sterling silver “Celebrate Life” bracelet for $15.00.

 

http://www.walmart.com/search/search-ng.do?search_query=hallmark+charms

 

      You don’t even need jewelry or anything that you have to buy. You can make something on your own or use index cards and markers or colored pencils. I have a plastic container that holds index cards. I love to write inspirational words, messages, quotes, and song lyrics on the cards. Or you can buy a box of plain special occasion cards with pictures on the front but plain inside so you can color or write what you want.

 

      I don’t generally promote extreme materialism and do not believe we need material objects to be happy or inspired or to feel valuable or worthy. But I do love the idea of having one or a few tangible reminders and inspirational little gems to uplift us.

<3. If you like this idea, I hope you find your perfect little inspirational gem to carry around, wear, or keep with you. Or if you already have something like this, I would love to read about it!

😀 🙂

 

And always remember, “You can be greater than anything that can happen to you”!!!  

-Norman Vincent Peale 

 

X0xo Kim ❤  

CBT Thought Record

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My therapist told me about a tool that can help us examine and pay conscious attention to our thought patters, particularly negative thoughts. It is designed to help us pay attention to a negative emotion and negative automatic thought that accompanies it. Then we think of evidence that supports that thought and evidence that does not support it. Then we come up with an alternative thought and in the end write the feeling we experience after that whole observation.

It’s called Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) Thought Record and comes in the form of a worksheet that an be printed off line.

 

I would like to share this technique with people.

 

It can also be done in a journal too.

It goes like this:

 

Section 1: Where were you?:

(Where were you?, What were you doing?, Who were you with?)

 

Section 2: Emotion or Feeling:

(Emotions can be described with one word. E.g. Angry, sad, scared, Rate 0-100%)

 

Section 3: Negative automatic thought:

(What thoughts were going through your mind? What memories or images were in my mind?)

 

Section 4: Evidence that supports the thought:

(What facts support the truthfulness of this thought or image?)

 

Section 5: Evidence that does NOT support the thought:

(What experiences indicate that this thought is not completely true all of the time? If my best friend has this thought what would I tell them? Are there any small experiences which contradict this thought? Could I be jumping to conclusions?)

 

Section 6: Alternative Thought: 

(Write a new thought which takes into account the evidence for and against the original thought)

 

Section 7: 

(How do you feel about this situation now? Rate 0-100%)

 

I will provide a true example of mine that I gave to my therapist.

 

Section 1: Where were you?:

(Where were you?, What were you doing?, Who were you with?)

On the sofa, reading and my mom was in the room with me.

 

Section 2: Emotion or Feeling:

(Emotions can be described with one word. E.g. Angry, sad, scared, Rate 0-100%)

 

Brief feeling of depression, strong negative emotion. About 90%.

 

Section 3: Negative automatic thought:

(What thoughts were going through your mind? What memories or images were in my mind?)

Negative thoughts and feelings and thoughts of failure and lack of accomplishment popped into my mind. I experienced memories of not accomplishing things I wanted to or planned to and memories of things I did wrong. And believing that I will never or can never accomplish much.

 

Section 4: Evidence that supports the thought:

(What facts support the truthfulness of this thought or image?)

It took me longer than it could have to graduate college. I still live with family and not on my own. I don’t have a professional job yet.

 

Section 5: Evidence that does NOT support the thought:

(What experiences indicate that this thought is not completely true all of the time? If my best friend has this thought what would I tell them? Are there any small experiences which contradict this thought? Could I be jumping to conclusions?)

It took me longer to graduate but I did graduate. I have a job and had the job for a while. I have accomplished other things and have the ability to understand and adjust to things. I would point out to my best friend all of the instances where s/he did accomplish things big or small. Every accomplishment matters.

 

Section 6: Alternative Thought: 

(Write a new thought which takes into account the evidence for and against the original thought)

 

I can accomplish things and will accomplish more if I am determined and do my best. Failing at something doesn’t make someone a failure as a whole and failing is ok, I can just try again and accept what I cannot change. Certain things take longer than others and everyone lives and experiences at their own pace.

 

Section 7: 

(How do you feel about this situation now? Rate 0-100%)

Much more positive and optimistic. Around 100%.

 

I believe this is a very positive and effective habit to develop. It can help us think objectively and see all sides of a situation and come up with more positive alternatives to self-limiting thoughts or beliefs.

 

Here is a link that can help guide you and explain more in depth about cbt thought records. The examples this page provides are slightly different than mine because I have not used this page’s examples yet, I only did this the basic way my therapist told me about.  

 

http://www.cognitivetherapyguide.org/contact.htm

 

I hope this can help some people! 😀

 

Xox0 Kim ❤

Parakeet Paradise <3

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My dad has three beautiful parakeets, two girls and one boy. Lennon & Dylan are the girls and Elvis is the boy. They are so adorable and do the cutest little things. My dad read that they get to know people and their routine schedule and they like to follow their schedule everyday. They have two cages, a small one and a large one filled with food, water, perches, mirrors, toys…

The cages are kept open morning until night when they go to sleep so they can come out and fly around. We make sure there’s nothing that is a threat to them. And they have two ladders hanging close to the ceiling where they fly up and play. To some people’s surprise, they actually like being in their cages and choose often to go in on their own sometimes to play with their toys and sometimes just to sit on their perch and rest.

They also have a swing that they swing real fast on! It’s so adorable! They each have unique personalities. Elvis is the largest. He has a big cute belly and he likes to keep his feathers unkempt. Lol. And he loves to get away for a while and sit in the smaller cage on a perch all by himself. I guess that’s when Lennon & Dylan get on his nerves! Lol. Dylan is the least afraid of people but she still is. At first she wasn’t but she picked up the slight shyness to people that the others have. They’re not afraid when people are near but they don’t want to be held by anyone. But they fly very close to us. Lennon loves her ladders and her mirrors! They all get along very well and they love each other. They are very loving little birdies. One of my favorite things is when they kiss each other real fast over and over and over! It’s so amazingly adorable, I’ll have to get it on video one day when I can catch them in action and have my phone ready! Lol And another favorite of mine is when they are on their swing, swinging very quickly! It’s so cute & funny!

They follow each other around and interact with each other very frequently.

They are all beautiful colors, Elvis & Lennon are vibrant green and yellow and Dylan is pastel while and blue.

These little birdies are nature’s inspiration. Just watching them is awe-inspiring.

I often wonder what they’re saying when they chirp so frequently and if they use the same chirps to say the same things again later and if they always understand the chirps of one another. But I like the little mystery of wonder and not exactly knowing.

 

They don’t seem to mind getting their picture taken but I always turn the flash off when taking pictures of small animals such as birds because I heard that the flash can hurt or even kill them somehow.

 

I’m blessed to be able to walk into Parakeet Paradise every day!!! 😀 ❤ 🙂

 

X0xoox Kim ❤