Snow Day!!!❄☃⛇⛄☕

“Kindness is like snow; it beautifies everything it covers.”

Recently we had a snow day here in Philadelphia! Then today we had a snowy morning! This is one of my babies playing in the snow! I just love him! He looovveess snow! He loves holidays and loud noises, talking decorations, and people & doggies! He’s a big teddy bear named Zero!❤

One of the most joyous things to witness in this life is a dog or a human child experiencing pure, raw joy, like right here! He is thrilled!

Here are some of my other snowday pics!⛄⛇☃❄⭐🌟👼🎀🌲🍭🎑🎁💟

Snow angel❤

This is a kind of coffee called holiday blend. It sounds very good and has molasses and cinnamon and sounds/looks better than it tasted! ☕

This is a pic I took for my mom because she loves angels.👼❤😇

This is a sweet ass car right here! The first thing I thought as soon as I first saw it is, goodness that CAR!

The thing must have cost a pretty penny and the vibrant red color is stunning. I’m not interested in cars and don’t even drive but I want this! Just because it’s totally impressive to have. 😂 There’s a little bit of shallow in me, oh well!😍

I hope you are having a lovely day or night wherever in the world you are!

Much love & light,

xoxo Kim ❤

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Motivation❤

When I saw this today, I was instantly inspired. This quote is referring to the sport of running but can apply to any routine, sport, hobby…we engage in or would like to. Anything we want to make a habit or way of life, if we practice enough with no excuses, it will eventually became as natural or ingrained as breathing or brushing our teeth each day. Some examples are exercise routine, gratitude journaling, meditation, even things that may seem easier or more simple such as just taking a few minutes out each day to breathe or listen to uplifting music. It can be difficult and takes self discipline, patience, willpower, serious motivation….to develop even simple positive habits and stick with them enough until they become ingrained or “second nature.”

In this quote, the person mentions after “many long years,” we get to the mentality where we “just have to.” Being tired, raining out, freezing cold, too much other stuff to do….doesn’t matter. Whatever our goal is, is what has to be done. But we don’t even have to have been practicing for many years to get to “I just have to.” Even if we just set a goal today, we have to stick with it if it’s a serious goal of ours. We just have to. That’s how we get to the “many long years.”

A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.

This reminds me of another quote I come across now & again, I don’t remember the exact words but it’s about how there will never be “perfect conditions” or a “perfect time” to begin or do something. There will always be some excuse we can come up with for procrastinating. It will be cold or hot or raining or we will be tired or have too much to do or be hungry or maybe have a bit of a common cold…but none of this matters. These things are “beside the point.” They don’t matter.

Bloom where you’re planted.

If you have any goals/dreams, whether they are new or old and whether you have just begun or been practicing for months or years, keep going!! Even if it’s not always easy, it’s always worth it! It doesn’t matter if it’s raining or it’s cold or we’re tired….just keep it moving and love the journey that is leading to something wonderful!❤

Hugs! & Much love & light,

Xoxo Kim

Welcome to rock bottom -the only way now is UP

“Face to face, out in the heat

Hanging tough, staying hungry

They stack the odds still we take to the street

For the kill with the skill to survive”🐯

Eye of the Tiger – Survivor

Here is a post I wrote a couple days ago and just edited it a bit.

“Welcome to Rock Bottom

One day, after another routinely dreadful morning, I sat in my car looking at our office and thinking, ‘I DO NOT want to go in there. I hate my job. I can’t stand Frank. I don’t make enough money. I am so underutilized! Should I leave the company? Would I even be missed? What’s the point of all this anyway? Is this really my life? This can’t be my life.’ And there it was. I had finally reached it—I was at rock bottom. As I mentioned, I believe rock bottom is the moment when you finally find the power and the strength you’ve always been lacking to change your today and go on to create a better tomorrow. I knew I couldn’t get any lower, and at that moment, I realized that all of the training, coaching, reading, and inspiring I’d engaged in just a few years earlier had not disappeared completely. I started to sense something deep within. There was still a tiny spark of hope that things could get better. That internal spark was like a smothered flame that just needed a little air, and as soon as I realized the spark was there, it was as if someone poured kerosene on it. I started to think: ‘If my circumstances won’t change, maybe I can change the way I look at my circumstances, and maybe as a result, they actually WILL change.'”

These are wise words by Kevin Clayson, author of Flip the Gratitude Switch. I have experienced “rock bottom” before, just like he mentions here, where it’s like I just can’t get any lower, so desperate, plummeting to the lowest depths of my despair, until I can’t possibly sink any lower. Pulled deeper and deeper and deeper into some dark, seemingly endless abyss when finally I realize there is an end. And I have reached it.

What do we do when our world is crumbling on top of us, when everything shatters, when it’s hard to stand, so difficult just to live & breathe, and we are pulled so low we can’t go any lower?

We rise.

Usually when I have experienced this “rock bottom,” it’s with depression and sometimes when my chronic physical pain disorder is flaring up to what seems like unbearable levels and my body is wracked in physical agony beyond belief. The only way I can get lower when I’m like this, is to be put in the ground. I haven’t experienced these things in a long while. My physical pain disorder has been doing so well. I have been experiencing mild to no pain each & every day. Thanking my lucky stars! And I can’t even remember when I was last depressed! I’m so happy!

But it’s true, this morning I realized I have hit “rock bottom.” A different kind of rock bottom. Not depression of any kind or physical pain. But still I have found my self in a very low place in this life. Two months ago, I think it was, October, I wasn’t depressed or in physical pain but was in Hell everyday for a couple weeks. It ended for a while and now is back!🙊😱

This Hell I speak of is fear. Terror. Not just a bit of anxiety. Fullblown fear. It’s not fear in general but about a specific thing. As I mentioned here, in a post titled Serendipitous Strength, I used to be deathly afraid of being closed in small places that I can’t just get out of the second I want to, especially elevators and especially when I’m alone. I have been this way for as long as I can remember. Why is a mystery. As a child, I had breakdowns going on elevators even with my mom & dad.

I healed myself. It is an incredible accomplishment and awe-inspiring. The fact that I had a relapse doesn’t matter. It doesnt change how incredible it is. I healed this fear once and can and will heal it again.

I never worked on this fear specifically but during my personal development journey, my quest to find healing, working on myself to help heal my depression and cope with tmjd “cluster headaches” without realizing it, I was conquering my fear of being closed in. With my personal development plan I teach myself and train my brain to know I can handle and conquer anything. To know I will always be free no matter what position I’m in in this life. To know life is a gift no matter what. To see positivity and opportunity in any situation no matter how dreadful. I trained my brain with meditation and quotes and music and songs and writing to stay calm and composed for the most part, in any situation no matter what, no matter how painful physically or emotionally. (Out of my post Serendipitous Strength)

The #1 one thing that helps me with my fear is my Buddhist studies, not even just meditation but the writings I read even when I don’t put them into practice as intended. Just the reads are so powerful. All of these other things, quotes, songs, basic mindfulness…, helped me to a great extent, with depression & chronic pain and when I found Kadampa Buddhism, I found deeper healing and healing for this fear.

Somewhat recently, I suffered a relapse and my old fear returned to me with a vengeance. The second the elevator doors close and I’m on there alone, my first thought is “I’m screwed” and a sense of panic arises.

For work, I sometimes have to get on elevators. For about ten months I had to seven days a week, mostly by myself. Thankfully my fear was healed. But in a fraction of a second, while on an elevator, by myself, I suffered a relapse. I made the mistake of watching the numbers go up and waiting for the doors to open and you know when we watch & wait, a second feels like forever. I felt the doors took a second longer than usual to open and that’s all it took to bring that breath-taking fear crashing back into me. Flooded with terror, when the door finally opened, I stumbled into the hallway, trembling inside & out, legs like jelly, dizzy, panicked.

And my fear has been with me since then. I no longer have to be on an elevator every single day anymore and that may be part of the problem. I’m no longer accustomed to it and no longer have that chance to practice being calm on an elevator everyday. Now with those two things, the relapse & being out of touch with elevators, I nearly fall to pieces when I have to get on one by myself. I’m not scared anymore if I’m on an elevator with a dog or a human.

What if the elevator malfunctions while I’m on there myself and I’m trapped inside a box for who knows how long? My worst nightmare. I know I can handle it. My conviction is strong. But I don’t always feel that I can handle it. My conviction never falters. I know anyone can handle anything if we train our brain and adjust our attitude. But sometimes I focus too much on the feeling of not being able to handle it. And i fear if i get trapped, I will become a blubbering wreck and never recover. Two or more weeks away and when I think of it, my head is in turmoil.

(Photo not mine)

I am not someone who curses a lot out loud, in writing, or in my head. It’s not that I think it’s wrong. I love when people curse a lot. Lol It’s just not me. But early, this morning I was walking up a street thinking about how in a few weeks I will be required to get onto an elevator(the doors for staircases in some buildings open to get outside but are locked on the outside to get upstairs so elevators are generally required), most likely alone, and everyday for at least a week, and how I’m going to be living & breathing fear, I’m going to be a total wreck in my head, just like two months ago, and I just thought Fuck this shit. Seriously, fuck it. I am done. Not done with life or with work. I am done being conquered by this fear. So done. And I realized I have hit rock bottom two months ago and am still here now. And I remembered Mr. Clayson’s story about how rock bottom is our opportunity to rise above. I will rise above this fear. I will conquer it.

How? I’m not quite sure but I know I will. I will discipline my brain. And I have a few things in mind. More intensive Dharma practice & gratitude practice, The Work, rhythmic breathing, desensitization…

There is no place for this fear. I don’t want it and I won’t have it. I don’t have to accept it because it can be changed. Two months ago I found it difficult to focus on anything other than this fear. I spilled coffee all over because my hands were trembling, My legs were shaky and I was lightheaded. After getting off an elevator, it took me so long to recover, those mornings & nights. Outside I probably looked a bit shaken up but inside, I was wrecked. (I did face my fear and kept getting on elevators though, {BY MYSELF, ALONE!!!, ME!!! On an elevator ALONE!!! Whhhaaattt?! Holy guacamole!} which is a display of great strength & courage. I did what I had to do while not repressing my fear) I felt that I couldn’t even stand up straight each day.

This is unacceptable and I will change it. Whatever it takes. I will not avoid elevators and will not put up with this terror. And there’s no place for it in my world. It’s not welcome here and I do not have to accept it.

I healed my fear mostly with Buddhist philosophy. And I will again. This is the main thing that brought me so much deep healing and I know without a doubt, it will again. I just have to concentrate.

Recently, I received a Dorje Shugden Empowerment and I am totally counting on it (& my previous Empowerments) helping me cope with & heal this fear.

Om vajra wiki witrana söha.

OM AH RA PA TSA NA DHI

Just like Mr. Clayson shares in the excerpt above, it can feel like all our previous strength, wisdom, personal development is down the drain, but it’s not. Somewhere deep inside, there is strength, wisdom, courage even if it seems to be long gone or seems like we never had any to begin with.

What I am promoting here is not necessarily any specific techniques like gratitude, meditation, conscious breathing or philosophy like Buddhist philosophy, though I do generally promote those. Here, I am just suggesting that we rise above our fear, pain, struggles…and keep going. Keep moving up. Pro-act. Let’s not sink to the bottom and stay there. Do something. Whatever it takes. Whether it’s professional help, meditation, personal development books, exercise, gratitude practice…find something, do something, and just keep going.

(Photo not mine)

It can be done. I did this before and if you are reading this now, so can you. I was able to make the choice to face a fear so powerful that I feel it can drive me insane, like I will lose all sense of language and awareness…, face it & conquer it and completely overcome it. Whatever your issue is, grief, fear, depression, addiction of any sort or something that may seem less serious…you can face it and overcome it. It’s not the problem itself that is actually the problem; it’s how we attach to it, perceive it, view it, react to it…and we have a choice to change that.

“I choose to FIGHT BACK! I choose to RISE, not fall! I choose to LIVE, not die! And I know, I know that what’s within me is also WITHIN YOU.”

We can & we will.

I am here cheering you on right along with cheering myself on. I have a lot of work to do and it’s every bit worth it. Keep going.

“When you’re at the end of your rope, tie a knot and hold on!!”

Much love & light & strength to you,

Xoxo Kim❤

P.s Elevators are the worst invention in the history of ever!!! I have a few choice words for the inventor! Blahhh!!!

Claudia.

(NOT my photo but so lovely)

Sometimes people are beautiful. Not in looks. Not in what they say. Just in what they are.”

Today I met a strong, beautiful woman named Claudia. Shortly after meeting her I had a rare thought. I thought:

I like her. I want to be like her.

It’s not rare for me to like someone but for me to actually, necessarily want to be like someone is rare. When I had the thought, it wasn’t unpleasant or negative or jealous or in a competitive way. It was more like me being so inspired by another woman’s beauty (not physical beauty, though Claudia is beautiful inside & out) which resonates so much with my own, that I want to reach deep within and unleash my own beauty in a more profound way. I want to strengthen it.

Something about her reminded me of me. She has a quiet, calm, simple, matter-of-fact, way about her. Not just displayed by how she talks or acts but just how she is.

While talking to her, she complimented another woman to me. There is nothing more beautiful than girls complimenting other girls.

And when she complimented me, it was sincere and not condescending like she thought I needed validation. Her only intention was to encourage & uplift.

Around her, I sensed a safe place. A place of no judgment, only love, acceptance, warmth.

She has a job helping, serving others, a job that takes deep compassion & great strength, both of what she displays so genuinely.

When I met her, I thought of the quote I shared above & was reminded of the beautiful song sung by Billy Joel, She’s got a way.

She’s got a light around her.

She’s got a way – Billy Joel

Claudia certainly has a way about her.

Humble but confident. Soft but strong. Tender, yet firm. Fiercely compassionate and very kind.

How beautiful it is to inspire someone simply by being. BEing our honest self. Not trying to be someone or something else. No matter who/what we are, someone, somewhere desires/longs for just that. Loud, quiet, warm, firm, syrupy sweet, badass, bitchy, reserved or very demonstrative….some of these things will resonate with some while others will resonate with someone else.

Keep on keeping on! You never know who your own beauty is inspiring!❤

I want to be an even better me after meeting Claudia.

Much love & light,

Xoxo Kim

FLIP the gratitude switch

“There is success embedded in every failure.
Without gratitude, failure is nothing more than disappointment.
There is joy embedded in despair.
Without gratitude, despair is nothing more than a hole left unfilled.
There is hope embedded in tragedy. Without gratitude, tragedy is nothing more than loss of hope.
There is healing embedded in pain. Without gratitude, pain is simply unnecessary.
There is a new beginning embedded in every ending.
Without gratitude, endings are always final.”

Found this in a book by Kevin Clayson. FLIP the Gratitude Switch How empowering! I am naturally positive & optimistic but it’s definitely good to have reminders sometimes and work to strengthen that natural positive disposition!

In every situation we can experience, there is something to be thankful for. Even if the experience itself doesn’t seem to have a bright side, there is something good we can give thanks for in the midst of it or we can allow the terrible, or merely unpleasant, experience to inspire us to do good for others. For example, if we have a difficult disability or illness, or other painful experience, we can reach out to others in similar situations and be a source of comfort & light, as we know just what it’s like. If we lose someone to an illness or other tragedy, we can support organizations that promote awareness or treatment/cures/support….for those struggling with the illness or whatever it may be, & their family/friends. If we hear about a massacre in the news, we can make the decision to donate blood, platelets, power red….if we are eligible, not just for those in that massacre but for people in general who may need it(every 56 days we can donate BLOOD if we want & keep someone else ALIVE!).

(Redcrossblood.org)

Let horrific and other difficult things inspire us to act in love & gives thanks for the opportunities. 💗

We can bring positivity into a place where there seems to be none, even if just in our head. A shift in attitude.

The not so good experience can be something severe like chronic pain, depression, grief & loss or something seemingly small & trivial next to those things like a flat car tire, spilling something on our clothes, stuck in traffic…

At least it’s only a flat tire, not the engine broken, at least we have a car to have a flat tire, give thanks for the ability to get into a car & drive, at least we’re just stuck in traffic & not killed in traffic or in a collision…

This isn’t at all promoting giving thanks that it’s us still alive while someone else isn’t or being relieved that someone else is the unfortunate one. I will never promote that and I don’t believe Mr. Clayson is promoting that either. The point is simply to look at our own situation and see the good in it whatever else is going on. We can all do this. Being thankful for our own goodness isn’t going to hurt others and repressing gratitude out of guilt that we are better off than some, isn’t going to help them at all. So let’s give thanks!

An example I have, which is more on the trivial side but still sucks, is yesterday morning, one of my dogs (one who I take care of for someone, not one of the ones I live with), broke my phone! Oh rats! He’s a very wild boy, doesn’t always listen, & is very strong. He knocks me over when we’re playing! He wasn’t listening to me and he shattered the part of my phone that takes pictures! That’s the last part I want broken, as I love taking pics most days! Oh well.

But instantly, I thought, at least my phone still turns on, the apps still work, I still can take pics, all my info wasn’t lost, it’s so good to have a job working with animals (even when they destroy my stuff!), I’m not sick today…Instead of a stream of negative thoughts like how disappointing, now I have to spend money on a new phone, why couldn’t it have been a different part that broke…I chose to see the good in this situation and just the general good.

Then last night, he jumped into a big puddle, soaking my shoes & socks and wetting my pants. He was all soaked n jumped on me, rubbing his wet face & chest all off on my new hoodie. And the water he jumped in smelled like sour stuff because there was food all dissolved in it.

Of course, I laughed hysterically! It was very uncomfortable, physically but I got a good belly laugh out of it. And’s it’s adorable how he cleaned himself all off on my clothes. 😍 Again, I saw the light in this situation. Any of us can do this on any occasion!

It is important to keep in mind that no matter how unimportant/trivial the unpleasant experience is, this life philosophy applies to it. Each day, many/most/all of us experience minor stresses or annoyances like dropping something, encountering someone we would prefer not to, seeing a post on social media we don’t like,….if we practice FLIPing with these simple things, we will be more equip with skills to cope with more deeply disappointing or devastating things like illness, grief/loss, other more serious situations.

Sometimes it will be easier to see the bright side than others and occasionally, we may have to force it but it can be done even if we have to “fake it til we make it” sometimes. Keep practicing & making the choice to see the good and it will become easier & easier until it’s a way of life.

To keep choosing over & over throughout each day whenever something unpleasant happens, even something very small and trivial like our shoelace untying, all the way up to the horrific & tragic, like someone dying, to give thanks for what is still good, is life-altering, for the better.

Keep making that choice, no matter how difficult it may be, to FLIP that switch & shine light on the goodness! 💖

Much love & light to you, always! 💖

Xoxo Kim

With love, xoxo❤

If you clean the floor with love, you have given the world an invisible painting.” 💖

My job is to love, both as an action/verb & also just in the form of emotion. It’s my job in this life in general and also my paid job, loving animals and the people whose pets they are. There are things I have to do for practical purposes, filling the water bowl, food bowl, snapping their harnesses on, putting on coats & booties, putting down potty mats, cleaning up accidents in houses/apartments, cleaning litter boxes, picking up 💩 with doggy bags, giving medication/supplements….these are the practical things but I realize they are not only that. Just like playing, cuddles, kisses, pets & hugs, all these practical acts, the things that seem more like work and may at first appear to be just “means to an end,” just something that has to be done and over with so we can get to the more fun, pleasant things like playing and going for walks, they too are acts of love. They may not be as obviously loving acts as the hugs and kisses and playing but are part of loving an animal. To get to do these things is a gift.

My baby 💜

This little baby in the picture with me is a sweet girl who I generally take care of five days a week, sometimes more, while her mommies are at work. Sometimes I even get to have sleepovers with her! 😍 I have known her for almost a year and love her like my own! One day a while ago, my schedule was a little bit different and she was assigned to a different petsitter that day. As I was leaving, I realized how much I would really miss the seemingly little things, like filling her water bowl and setting it on the floor for her. Of course I would miss playing with her, the cuddles, & kisses, & walking with her. But not so obvious are the small practical things like simply filling her water bowl for her. It’s something we may take for granted if we aren’t careful.

My experience with not having her on my schedule that day, reminded me more, to always cherish the little things, the mundane, the practical. I always honor the love in these acts.

One of the best things about my job is that I get to experience loving animals the way their own humans love them. Like I mentioned, love, is a feeling but also a verb/action. We all love our pets in different ways. Some people love their dogs by spoiling them and giving them food that isn’t for animals, while others love their dogs by not allowing them “people food.” Some love their dogs by making them go for walks even if they don’t want to go out, because they think it’s good for them, while others give in & let the furbaby stay in. Some people express love for their dogs, putting a coat on them when it’s cold, buying them a doggy bed, lots of toys, while others love theirs just as much but not doing these things.

Some of these things aren’t important for me to do with my own dogs/cat. But if it’s important to the person whose pet I am taking care of, it becomes just as important to me to do for the pet even if I don’t do that for my own. I love getting to experience loving all of these babies everyday, both in my own way, and loving them how they are loved by their own family. I feel that it’s a great kindness to welcome me into their homes, families, & lives, to love their pets.

What a gift to have a job like this. I cherish the moments and honor the love in each one.

Whatever our job is, whether it’s a paid job, stay at home mom or dad, volunteer job….and not just jobs but with each moment in this life, let’s remember the love, be mindful, intentional, conscious…& honor that love in each breath.💖

Almost everything we do, no matter how simple or trivial it may seem, whether it’s required of us or not, is helping someone or something, somehow contributing to the world around us being even if just a little bit better. No matter how unimportant a job may seem or how unfulfilling it is to the one working, it is very likely helping something or someone and that is why it exists. Mopping floors, serving food, filing papers, answering phones….are all important in some way to those being served and/or the employers we work for. And even just doing something that helps no one but our own self, sipping coffee/tea, watching a sunset, coloring…be all there and cherish those moments. Let all that we do be done in love! (I think this is a biblical quote or something like it & it deeply resonates with me!) 😍

Life is not lost by dying; life is lost minute by minute, day by dragging day, in all the small uncaring ways.

Much love & light to you, always! I hope you are having a beautiful day or night wherever in the world you are!

Xoxo Kim

Happy Halloween 🎃 🎃💀👻🍁🍂🌕🎑♡ (warning: cuteness overload!)

Look at my adorable babies lookin’ all festive & proud in their little seasonal scarves! Princess Dalia on your left & Mr. Trigo bear on your right! I take care of these lil ones part of the day, five days a week while their mommy & daddy are working! Walking them & playing with them. ♡ I love my job! These are two of the most loving, calm, gentle dogs you can ever meet! Ever! They are BIG! Sweet teddy bears! And the boy never ever barks! The girl rarely does. They are rescue doggies, rescued by a golden organization where their mommy & daddy adopted them. They are very close & love each other and copy what each other does. They are so funny! They are very happy & very loved! ♡ I have been taking care of them for almost a year & couldn’t love them more! Dalia loves pumpkins! She’s fascinated while out & about and sees them. 🎃

♡ This is an Instagram pic I posted on my work account. We all post pics on there everyday of our sweet babies. ♡ I hope they brighten your day! (Whether or not you celebrate Halloween!)

🎃 🎃💀👻🍁🍂🌕🎑♡

Much love to you,

Xoxo Kim ♡