Archive | April 2014

Follow Your Own Way

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I recently read a very old and very short fictional story called “Young Goodman Brown” about a young man who initially has faith in the basic, universal goodness of humanity.   But things occur in the story to shake his faith. It falters then collapses and he’s convinced there isn’t much goodness in humans. 

This story, if I understand correctly, is inspired by the author’s real life situations.

I have been analyzing it and reading an analysis of it. It reminds me of a few quotes that are somewhere along the lines of “Be kind to people in general, even unkind ones, not because they’re kind but because you are.”

This quote implies kindness as a way of life and not a mere occasional act or feeling in response to environmental situations. Even when people are not kind, YOU still are. You can let your kind Way and your kind philosophy waver and lash out in unkindness or you can keep it firm and grounded and stay true to yourself even in the face of other people’s bitterness.

If you are a kind person, it’s easy to be loving, kind, compassionate…when it’s convenient, when you’re currently surrounded by goodness, beauty, sweetness, kindness, love. 

But what about when you are currently surrounded by someone else’s bitterness, what about when you encounter a rude person or a very unpleasant situation?   It can be so tempting to let our own kind, loving, compassionate, optimistic ways crumble.  And that doesn’t make someone a bad person.  Most of us probably have relapses and setbacks and it is natural to be defensive in situations where you feel threatened in some way.  But even in the midst of stress, chaos, rude people, negativity, pain, you’re still that kind, loving, caring you that you generally are. You’re still the you who believes in goodness, kindness, and love. Don’t forget you. Be true to and honor the you that you are.

You can build yourself so strong nothing will break what you are, nothing will bring your life philosophy, your morals and virtues, your principles, your deep wisdom to destruction. This isn’t to say we should be closed minded and restrained by our views that nothing and no one can enlighten us, educate us, or persuade us to a different view if we find evidence that that view may be true or better for us.   It’s to say that we don’t have to lose faith that people are basically good just because of an encounter with a few bad ones, we don’t have to resort to unkindness and bitterness because others are, we don’t have to stop loving because we find someone doesn’t love us in return, we don’t have to wish bad things for people because they wish bad things for us, we don’t have to let pain, horror, negativity, fear, depression, fury…bring our deep wisdom to ruin. We don’t have to let painful thoughts, feelings, and emotions convince us that life is bad.

We can have a firm sense of who we are and honor that someone, always. We can change, grow, expand, evolve in various ways but stay true to who we are.

This story and thoughts and concept helps me so much when I’m depressed or becoming depressed/suicidal.

I haven’t been real depressed for a while but a few nights ago I felt myself kind of slipping. I was in a depressed mood, not yet a full blown depressive episode but a very low, depressed mood and couldn’t sleep right. Through the years of my depressive illness I learned how to often, though not always, prevent a full blown episode when I feel it about to hit. And when I’m not successful in preventing it, I’m often better now, at coping with and “breezing right through it” than I could years ago.  So I was trying so hard not to let it get me.

I can often tell when I’m about to become suicidal or when suicidal thinking is about to occur.   A few nights ago, I was having suicidal thoughts that felt as if they were just getting stronger and stronger, not urges, not contemplation but if it got out of hand, it could have been headed that way.  There was no event that was currently happening to me to trigger this. I was on the verge of faltering.  Serious suicidal contemplation hasn’t happened for me in well over a year now. And I did not then and do not now want a relapse after all my hard work to prevent that sort of thinking/urges. But it takes a lot of energy to ward off those thoughts, feelings, emotions when I feel them swirling around in my head. A lot of energy and strength. I was angry, depressed and wanted to let myself sink and slip into that dark place I once lived, so long.

But I thought of my Way. My own Way. My own life philosophy that life is beautiful and hope can be restored.   There’s so much to live for. Even through the pain, life is a blessing. Gratitude saves my life sometimes. When I’m so drained and ready to cave, I think of all I have. All that I am.  It took a lot of practice to get my life philosophy so ingrained into me that it helps me fend off suicidal/depressive attacks. But I have accomplished so much with it.

It takes practice and work to build yourself so strong that even in the face of misery and seemingly unbearable pain and even being dragged into other people’s negativity,you remain true to yourself. Your deep, authentic self who knows true wisdom and your own Truth.

I hope you will choose to honor you, your true deep self, when you feel yourself slipping in any way, about to cave and give into negative actions. This isn’t only for depressed people who have what I have but even people without depression. Almost everyone has some kind of struggles or pain and can use some loving inspiration now and again.

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“Love is always bestowed as a gift – freely, willingly and without expectation. We don’t love to be loved;we love to love.” ~ Leo Buscaglia 

Xoxo Kim 😀

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The Power of a Woman

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“The Power of a Woman comes not from the strength of her body or the shrewdness of her resolve, but in the beauty of her heart, her mind, and her soul. A simple look can brighten the darkest hour. Her touch can warm the coldest of days. Her smile can intoxicate you. Her words can give wealth that the richest man would covet.” ~ Troy White

You’re Gonna Miss This

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“First I was dying to finish high school and start college. And then I was dying to finish college and start working. And then I was dying to marry and have children. And then I was dying for my children to grow old enough for school so I could return to work. And then I was dying to retire.
And now I am dying…
And suddenly I realize I forgot to live.” ~ Unknown 

Yesterday morning I woke up to a lovely, Positively Positive, post:

http://www.positivelypositive.com/2014/04/07/there-is-no-perfect-age/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+positivelypositive%2Fpositive+(Positively+Positive)

The author states that every age and stage of life has its blessings and its challenges. No age or stage is “THE perfect one.”

And it’s great to appreciate each stage for what it is.

I frequently say that getting older is a blessing and so is every age, young or old. The longer we live the more chances we have to love and be loved, bless and be blessed, learn, teach, give and receive, meet more wonderful people, animals, have more opportunities to do, see, encounter all kinds of amazing things. Getting older is a gift denied to many. If you’re here, you’re blessed, irrespective of your age or stage of life.

Maybe you’re young and jobless, in college and struggling financially, maybe you’re single or experiencing the stresses of life as a married person, caring for a family, house, working a lot, maybe you’re waiting to retire and be done with your job, waiting for your kids to grow up so you can be done with most of the stress factors of taking care of children….

Maybe you’re single and long to be married or married and are longing for those days you were more carefree. Maybe you have no kids and think you won’t be happy until you have one. Maybe you do have kids and it’s hectic and you’re stressed and pulling out your hair.

Maybe your kids just moved away or you are done work for good and you’re feeling kind of empty.

There are unique gifts that you have when you’re single that you won’t when you’re married or in a committed romantic relationship and the other way around. There are blessings you have being someone without children that you won’t have if you have children but there are blessings you have when you have them that you did not have when you weren’t yet someone with a child.

Whatever stage of life you are currently in, chances are there is something about it you don’t like much and another stage or age is looking really good. But whatever stage that is, it also has challenges as well as gifts.

Wanting to be younger doesn’t make much sense when you think about it because you are so much wiser now, know so much more, have much more experience than back then. And if you wish you could go back but still know and be all that you are now, it’s basically the same thing then but with a different numerical label.

People often want to be younger because of the physical aspects or sexual (and other) appeal of youth but you can be appealing, in any way, at any age.  And an appealing personality is better than a bangin’ body anyway. I actually believe that a woman’s beauty often deepens with age, in different ways. And I find this to be true for men too. Anyone can be wise, beautiful, and intelligent at any age, but age definitely brings blessings with each one.

And if you feel currently trapped within your youth, just remember, you won’t always be this way. You will grow, lose people and things, gain other things, meet more people, current moments will turn to memories to be cherished and you will develop more and more memories.

But one thing is very likely, wherever you currently are right now, no matter how stressful or chaotic, there’s something you’re going to miss about this.

I can think of previous stages I once lived, and couldn’t wait for parts of it to end, that I now miss! Even things I once found stressful or boring. Thinking back, reminiscing, I experience a sense of sadness or longing sometimes. Even for things I never thought I could miss. It’s bittersweet. 

But this isn’t about being sad or wishing to go back or about regrets.   It’s about becoming aware of right now and embracing the present knowing that one day it’s possible that we’ll look back on this and realize how great it really is/was but we never realized.

It’s about taking full advantage of the NOW even if we’re struggling.   Then we can look back, miss it, but still know at least we made the most of it while we had the chance. 

I write here frequently about how I love country music! Especially when it’s songs about love and ones that are inspirational and uplifting and full of wisdom.   I have a long playlist of them. Yesterday I was introduced to one I haven’t heard of before then! Trace Adkins’, “You’re Gonna Miss This.”

In the article above, the author mentions this song! 

The dad is singing about how his little girl couldn’t wait to grow up and throughout different stages of her life, all she wanted was the next stage. Her dad tells her to slow down and just cherish now. Now is good.

Even with screaming kids, barking dogs, a small apartment with stuff breaking down. Now is good.

“Before she knows it she’s a brand new bride
In a one-bedroom apartment, and her daddy stops by
He tells her It’s a nice place
She says It’ll do for now
Starts talking about babies and buying a house
Daddy shakes his head and says Baby, just slow down
You’re gonna miss this
You’re gonna want this back
You’re gonna wish these days hadn’t gone by so fast
These Are Some Good Times
So take a good look around
You may not know it now 
But you’re gonna miss this
Five years later there’s a plumber workin’ on the water heater
Dog’s barkin’, phone’s ringin’
One kid’s cryin’, one kid’s screamin’
She keeps apologizin’
He says They don’t bother me. 
I’ve got 2 babies of my own. 
One’s 36, one’s 23.
Huh, it’s hard to believe, but …”

Awww

I love it.

Whether you’re a 20 year old girl and broke as a joke, struggling to find your place in this life or a 40 year old person wishing you were younger and more youthful again, or a 60 year old person waiting to retire to be done work or 80, 100 years or older, cherish right now.

This song reminds me of another song with a similar concept:

“Then they do” – Also sung by Trace Adkins about how parents often can’t wait til their kids grow up, have lives of their own, find true happiness and dreams coming true. Then they do. And then that’s when they start to miss all the days their kids were young and annoying and stressing over trivial things.   It teaches us to appreciate what we have now.

So if you catch yourself saying “I can’t wait till….I have more money, it’s Friday, my vacation, I’m a certain age or I wish…I could be younger, more accomplished, more important…
” just remember, you are enough just as you are and one day, you just may find that you miss this.

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

“No matter how long you have been traveling down the wrong road it’s never too late to turn around and begin again. ” ~ Unknown 

Xoxo Kim


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My sweet, looong List of Happy. <3 :-D

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I recently stumbled across a blog post about “List of Kinds of People I Seriously Hate”

And to my dismay I am on that list! Lol Well not me personally but one of the kinds of people she “seriously hates.” lol How rude!

;-D

She seems like a very outspoken girl though who is very sure of herself and isn’t afraid to state her views and just be herself, not fearing what others will think or say about who she is. And I think that’s generally something to be appreciated and respected so I wasn’t too annoyed and she also loves animals so that’s alright with me!  Anyway, she can’t stand girls who wear low cut shirts, especially when they post pics of themselves and that’s totally me! She said it’s totally slutty and any girl like that will be taken right off her newsfeed or any social media list! But it’s just my style is all! Always has been, always will be! ;-D

She said her and her friends tried to write a list of happy things and it was so much harder than writing the list of negative things.  

It surprised me that so many agreed with her. I’m the opposite.   I find it so much easier thinking of things I love. I only planned on writing like 20 something things and just couldn’t stop!   Now it’s way over 100!

But when I try to write a list of things I don’t much care for, I get stuck before even getting to ten usually!   Lol! I guess I’m a little too accepting or easy going?! 😀
Mostly the things on my negative list are : unjust discrimination, animal cruelty, prejudicial attitudes, abuse, homicide….things like that. 

Also, I think “happy lists” are often more unique than “sad lists” because the unhappy lists are often universal. If you think about it, who really does like unjust discrimination, diseases, sore throats, child or domestic abuse, homicide…? Pretty much no one.  

But not everyone loves the color pink or rainbows or babies! 

So happy lists are quite unique.

Inaccurate grammar, Girls who do the duck face, post pics of their messy kids and food all day, piss and moan about their drama, are slutty, post 50, million pics of themselves in restrooms, half dressed, political rants…..don’t annoy me. I don’t mind seeing their stuff or whatever.   Whatever floats your boats, girls! Lol

I’m not the most judgmental girl in the world which also means I don’t really judge people too hard who judge me negatively.   I’m mostly, understanding of your lack of understanding, compassionate even with your lack of compassion, empathetic for your lack of empathy, accepting of your lack of acceptance.

I don’t like it much but it is what it is, right?!

🙂 

Anyway, though, Here’s my list of happy!
Inspired by that girl’s list of not so happy! Lol

1.) animals

2.) shopping for makeup, clothes, books

3.) iced coffee especially when it’s really sweetened 

4.) meeting people I never met before

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5.) finding new quotes, songs, and poems that resonate with me in a deep way

6.) snowstorms and the first snowfall of the season

7.) When the seasons are changing to the next one – it’s something magical

8.) photography

9.) looking into a mirror and loving who/what I see

10.) the feeling of accomplishment, even if it’s something small

11.) making someone smile

12.) random acts of kindness

13.) helping someone 

14.) the way it feels to put on comfy pj’s and fall into bed after a long day

15.) hot tea

16.) cake

17.) rain

18.) Hello Kitty

19.) journals and stationary stuff

20.) blogs

21.) my long hair

22.) gentle summer breezes

23.) all the different shades of green that appear throughout Spring & Summer

24.) novels and plays with deep, profound meanings

25.) poetry 

26.) getting a new handbag

27.) learning a new life lesson or being reminded of ones I previously learned

28.) salt n vinegar chips

29.) babies!

30.) art journaling 

31.) walking in warm or cool weather 

32.) seeing people happy and doing well

33.) friends

34.) mindfulness meditation and activities 

35.) Buddhist teachings 

36.) philosophy 

37.) dreams while I’m sleeping and remembering them when I wake up

38.) being aware of beauty all around 

39.) my senses

40.) restaurants

41.) gratitude 

42.) parks 

43.) beautiful buildings 

44.) kind strangers 

45.) Oldies songs, country songs, love songs 

46.) Happy songs and sad poetry 

47.) the sky

48.) the moon

49.) getting caught in the rain

50.) taking a picture that turns out more perfect than I expected 

51.) love of all kinds, romantic, platonic, universal

52.) walking through a large shopping mall

53.) being surrounded by people

54.) hugs!

55.) making someone else happy

56.) Belly laughs that hurt

57.) the way it feels when laughing almost lifts me when I’m depressed sometimes or in physical pain

58.) Center City Philadelphia and all the beautiful buildings 

59.) buying someone a gift or cup of coffee/tea

60.) people who are open-minded, understanding, and empathetic for other people’s situations, problems, lives…

61.) all the colorful leaves of the fall

62.) Blueberry coffee (coffee with blueberry flavor in it) with cream and sugar

63.) fun/deep conversations with a stranger on a bus or at the bus stop

64.) connecting with people

65.) feeling one with all that is

66.) pretty candles with a sweet fragrance 

67.) being able to listen to the same song over and over and never get tired of it!

68.) unsuccessfully trying hard not to laugh at something hilarious that I know I shouldn’t be laughing at

69.)  serving people at the store where I work 

70.) coca cola

71.) romantic comedies

72.) anything sappy and cheesy 

73.) the sun and sunrises and sunsets

74.) Morning

75.) nightfall

76.) sunny afternoons

77.) hot cocoa with whipped cream on a bitter cold day

78.) gray days as well as sunny ones

79.) miserable weather 

80.) bright, clear blue sky with big fluffy white clouds

 81.) different kinds of accents people have

82.) learning phrases in other languages I don’t know

83.) getting a new or old book

84.) bookstores

85.) nail polish that stands out

86.) bright colored socks

86.) anything pink

87.) the color red – especially dresses and handbags, and lipstick on girls who can pull it off

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88.) the color green 

89.) sweet messages

90.) feeling deeply inspired 

91.) feeling motivated and taking action for the better

92.) twilight

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93.) finding beauty in unlikely places

94.) sweet memories

95.) When a certain scent takes me back to a place long gone. The bittersweetness of nostalgia

96.) old writings, books, plays

97.) flowers

98.) remembering a song I forgot long ago

99.) When pain isn’t as bad

100.) being filled with deep wisdom and sharing it with others or people sharing it with me

101.) Girls in five inch stilettos 

102.) animals playing 

103.) my online friends on Facebook, the blog, 365project…

104.) the feeling when a package comes in the mail for me!

105.) Happy surprises

106.) everything related to weddings 

107.) animal rescue organizations

108.) movie theatres 

109.) the feeling of laying in bed at night reading 

110.) trampolines 

111.) learning something fascinating 

112.) teaching someone something fascinating I learned

113.) making someone’s day better

114.) physical closeness – waiting for a bus with people, standing in lines at a store with people, sitting next to people….

115.) finding something with the letter “K” on it

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116.) peanut butter

117.) french vanilla cream horns

118.) university/college campuses

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119.) things not going as planned but then working out even better! 

120.) posting sweet song lyrics 

121.) snuggling under blankets with dogs or cats

122.) skyscrapers 

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123.) street signs and city lights

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124.) the sounds of the city

125.) busses and trolleys

126.) people who build each other up instead of dragging each other down

127.) tomatoes 

128.) walking in a light mist

129.) Indian food

130.) fruity or Hawaiian body spray 

131.) the way it feels using a new shower gel or hair product 

132.) facebook

133.) lemons in soda and iced tea

134.) warm places in the Winter

135.) being deeply inspired to create 

136.) birds flying around outside 

137.) the love of being greeted by my dogs when I walk into a room.

138.) lovers holding hands

139.) old people – they’re cute.

140.) reading about/hearing about someone’s dream finally coming true.

Wow! Life sure is good, isn’t it?! 😀

I never expected to feel this way at the end of this. So uplifted, warm, and in awe at how many amazing things there are to be so happy about. I did not list these all in one sitting; it took like two days but at the very end I felt so warm and light and like I can jump for joy!

Sometimes I create lists like these in my head at night as I’m laying in bed but it feels even different when I write out a super long list like this. When I think like this at night, the joy often keeps me awake! Lol. So I try to think of more mellow, serene things. You know your life is good when you can’t sleep at night because of too many GOOD thoughts!   

I don’t have a “real” job, not much money, I live with family, not on my own, I have a depressive and chronic physical pain disorder but I can still say that life is beautiful.   Beautiful with all the simple joys, all the sweet wonders that cost nothing or next to nothing.  
😀

May you realize all the treasures you are truly blessed with and feel inspired to list them and not be able to stop!  

Xoxo Kim

What if today we were just grateful for everything?/Zero-Based Gratitude

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http://ezinearticles.com/?Zero-Based-Gratitude&id=2753810Johnathan

Jonathan Huie is one of my heroes I never met in person. Like Norman Vincent Peale, Stephen Covey, Richard Carlson, Sarah Ban Breathnach, and many more.   And Daniel Gottlieb who I finally got to meet, last night!  All of these people work or have worked to help better the lives of others.  

I am deeply inspired by all of them and their brilliant work and lives.  

Jonathan Lockwood Huie explains in an Ezine article here: 
http://ezinearticles.com/?Zero-Based-Gratitude&id=2753810 
What Zero-based Gratitude is.

He explains this by first contrasting zero-based budgeting and incremental budgeting, which are techniques often used by businesses, governments, and sometimes individual people.   In incremental budgeting, which is traditionally employed, the entity starts with the budget for the last year or previous instance and prepares the subsequent budget based on the previous one. Incorporating whatever increases or more seldom, decreases, is considered to be appropriate.  

In contrast, zero-based budgeting begins with a baseline of no expenditures as opposed to the baseline of last year’s expenditures. Instead of looking at some previous year, they just look at now. Right now.   As Mr. Huie explains, every single proposed expense must be justified on its own merit as opposed to resorting to the argument that it was in last year’s budget and that everyone is expecting and demanding it.

For most people, their gratitude is incremental gratitude instead of zero based.

When they have a baby, get a new car, get a promotion, more money, a new house, a new love…they’re all thankful.   If they lose their job, are forced to get a smaller house or less of something, experience a breakup, get into an argument with someone, become ill or have a sick family member or friend, they get disappointed and angry, lose touch with the gratitude they felt when great things were happening. They haven’t been as blessed today with all they had yesterday.  

But still blessed. They just don’t know it. Or feel it. It’s ok to feel sad but we can still be grateful.

There are people who say if the quality of life they have now was greatly reduced by illness or injury, they would choose not to live. Not to be resuscitated.  Not to be kept alive with a feeding tube if that means they cannot walk or take care of themselves, if it means they cannot talk like they can now or express themselves in most ways they now can, if it means being a “burden” to others.   If basically all they can do is sit up with support and look around a room, being fed with a tube.

But you know what? Many people like this can feel.   They feel the touch of others, they feel the care of those who show it to them. They’re alive and conscious.   No longer like they used to be. They can’t hold ordinary conversations. They may not be able to speak words, maybe not even completely understand language always. 
But they understand touch. They understand smiles. Their hearts understand love.
  They see and feel. They see flowers, balloons, smiles, faces. They’re not always suffering even when they re all shriveled up looking, in a chair with a feeding tube. They may look like they’re in an “unfortunate” state to some people but they can be very happy in their own context, just as happy as a walking, mostly independent person who can feed herself.

Some are even born this way and are some of the happiest people!   They’re not “vegetables” or “retards” or “burdens” or “brain dead,” they’re people!!

If I all of a sudden tomorrow found myself very unlike the way I am today, my abilities dramatically reduced, my body damaged, with a feeding tube in me but I could still feel, both physically and emotionally, I would choose life even if I couldn’t consciously say or even think it in words.

My life would be just as valuable as the life I live now. Nothing can reduce my value.

I would see balloons and flowers and smiling faces.   I would feel the sweet, loving touch of a friend on my arm or the healing, compassionate touch of a doctor, a hand on mine, eyes looking into my own eyes. Feel the warmth of caring people, the beauty of daylight, the beams of golden sun, the sweetness of a gentle breeze, the vibrancy of the colors around me, the life that would still breathe in me.  And that would be enough for me.

Even if I couldn’t see or hear, I would still FEEL, most important of all!

Yes I would choose to be a “burden” and I know I wouldn’t really be a burden. Someone somewhere would be happy to have me. BLESSED to have me. Blessed with my smile, my love, my will to carry on.  Maybe a family member or a friend, another kind person or kind and loving health professionals who choose to care for people with extra needs who aren’t suffering but are not as independent as people who can walk and talk and feed and change themselves. Someone would have me. And I would gladly have that someone.

And someone would gladly have you and anyone else.  

In a state like that I would have so much less than now but I would still choose gratitude.   Still choose life.

What I have now are luxuries, beautiful luxuries. If I lose them, this life will still be beautiful. I will still be beautiful.

Today I have a house to live in, a bed to sleep in, blankets, heat, air, material objects like furniture, books, my phone….but if tomorrow my house burns to the ground taking everything I know with it, as long as I’m alive, I will give thanks. Even if I have to live out on the streets for a while.   It would be devastating, shocking, depressing, but I would STILL have things to give thanks for, my life, the sky above me, kindness and love….LOVE.

On many occasions I would probably have to force myself to see the goodness, the greatness. But it’s there and I’m capable.

I have a chronic physical pain disorder and it gets so horrifying that sometimes I wish I were dead when it flares up to that degree but I learned more and more to remember GRATITUDE for all that IS right even when it’s flaring up badly. And lots of things are right. Even when it seems my world is crumbling on top of me.

This also goes for my depressive disorder.   When I have a severe flare up, I think about dying but not nearly as often and usually not as deeply as I used to. I learned to often appreciate this life and give thanks even when it hurts. No matter how lifeless I feel or how agonizing my emotional pain is.   I learned to live in the present and not compare it to what I previously had or to what someone else may have.

Depression and physical pain have been my teachers, teaching me how one moment, everything can crumble and it seems like I have so much less than what I had just very recently. When a disorder flares up out of nowhere or is triggered by an environmental issue or a thought, it can be traumatic and it makes me see all the little things I had to be grateful for before the flare up.   I become painfully aware of all I was ignoring. My emotional or physical anguish makes the simple joys of life jump out at me and it’s painful to now notice them and know I was taking them for granted so frequently.  Painfully beautiful.   Beautifully painful.

But these disorders show me how not to do that so much. I developed an ingrained habit to notice and look for the joys of living whether I’m in any kind of pain or not. When I’m in extreme physical or emotional pain, I usually can’t take as much pleasure in things as I can without the pain but I can experience some joy and pleasure.   And with practice I can even learn to increase my joy even when it hurts. 

These are some examples of zero based gratitude.   It’s true that we can wake up one morning with significantly less than we just had the night before but instead of using last night as a reference, we can focus on the NOW and what we currently have. Let us give thanks for this present moment.

In some cultures, like the U.S. Culture for example, this is our way, to be very ungrateful for the most part. Not always though. We often give thanks for friends and family when the topic comes up, and like some other countries, we even have a whole holiday dedicated to gratitude. But as a culture,  we don’t seem to make gratitude and expressing it, our general way of life. We compare what we have to what others have and to what we previously had if it was more. We can think of a long list, when asked or when it’s a holiday, what we’re thankful for but then we soon forget.  

The more we have and get, the more we demand and if we lose some things we previously had, our lives “suck” or “FML!.”

I’m guilty of this myself. And probably will be guilty again.  But I have learned to mostly be conscious of when I’m doing this, to be conscious of what I’m grateful for, and for it to become an unconscious way or “second nature” to automatically give thanks.

There are blessings all around and within. A whole abundance of gifts and goodness.

Even when our blessings are reduced and we lose what we have, there is still an abundance of greatness. 

Let’s give zero-based gratitude a try.  

  

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Xoxo Kim