Live a Great Life Anyway …

“When Life Gets Tough, What Spills Out” …?

Source Unknown but deeply appreciated!

Hmmmm … isn’t THAT a humbling question?  When life gets tough, what spills out of you?

And, although my ”spillage is much less toxic than it used to be … and … much less frequent that it used to be, there are still times when I am not proud of what is spilling out of me.  Gah.

Tavelling?  Nothing like an airport and public transportation to invite a spill or two.

Workplace issues?  Yep. Certainly cause for a spill or two.

Wounded people?  Yep.  Hurt people cause spillage of global proportions.

Social Injustice? For sure.  Lots of spilling.

Family Breakdown? Perhaps the spilly-est place on the planet.

Yes.  There are many invitations for us to spill.  And, when we do, let’s take notice of what comes out of us.  It can be such a great reminder of where in our inner worlds we still have some work to do.

May we all become more aware and conscious of whether our spillage is contributing our contaminating our surroundings, Karen

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No Mud. No Lotus.

No mud No lotus

“The lotus is the most beautiful flower, whose petals open one by one. 

But it will only grow in mud.

In order to grow and gain wisdom, first you must have the mud ~ the obstacles of life and its suffering.

The mud speaks of the common ground that humans share, no matter what our stations in life.

Whether we have it all or we have nothing, we are all faced with the same obstacles: sadness, loss, illness, dying and death.

If we are to strive as human beings to gain more wisdom, more kindness and more compassion, we must have the intention to grow as a lotus and open each petal one by one.” 

(Goldie Hawn)


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Chin Up …


Source Unknown but deeply appreciated!

Each and every one of us is offered countless invitations over our lifetime to hang our heads in shame … to rake ourselves over the coals … to accept the ‘story’ that tells us we are not good enough, not love-able enough, not important enough, not smart enough, not skinny enough … blah, blah, blah.

But here is the thing … we don’t have to accept every invitation we get!  Just because we have a thought … doesn’t mean it is true. We do not have to accept the invitation to believe that thought.

Instead, we can simply look for the lesson in the moment, make any amends if/where necessary to clean up the mistake (including to ourselves!) … and then … chin up!  Falling and failing are essential parts of being human.   A ‘fall’ can’t define us … unless we  neglect to get back up.  Let’s not forget that things turn out the best for those who make the best of how things turn out.  Only always.

So … the next time you catch yourself accepting an invitation to let your head down, just take a quick peek at your shoes instead.

Upward and Onward …  Karen

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There is goodness in everyone … but sometimes it gets snuffed out.


There really is goodness in everyone.  Sometimes, however, the light inside them gets snuffed out by wounding, pain and trauma that they have experienced.  Sometimes, in people’s best efforts to protect their hearts they lash out or may put walls up in order keep others out.  Sometimes people can get so hyper-focused on their own injuries that they might overlook and/or fail to honor and acknowledge the pain in someone else’s experience.

Paradoxically, we can see clearly what others have done to hurt us, but we are oblivious to how we might have unwittingly hurt them first.  It can be very hard to see the places where they feel like we took the first punch …

One of the most challenging things in all relationships is to have compassion for the wounds of another when you are bleeding yourself.  And, the more deeply you are hurting yourself, the less capacity you will have to ‘see’ beyond your own pain.  It takes a conscious and deliberate effort to make room in our relationships to have compassion for the wounding of others.

And that is not to dismiss, minimize or excuse the pain we can unwittingly inflict upon each other. It is simply and invitation for each of us to open up some space in our hearts towards those who may be struggling to heal their own hurts.  Perhaps hurts that we cannot even see.  And, it is a reminder for each of us to be cautious … to give ourselves a wider berth at times … in order to protect ourselves from any unintentional slights.

With tender compassion for our collective wounding, Karen

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Are you cultivating a pearl … or … cursing the pain?

pearl in shell

It’s a choice … we can choose to make the most of the mess, to turn the grit into gold … to be better not bitter.  But it is a choice.

May we all find ourselves growing glossier not despite our experiences, but because of them, Karen


Yes, but our eyes may need time to adjust …


Source Unknown

And … sometimes, before we do that, we need to sit in the dark for a while … giving our eyes time to adjust.

With heartfelt compassion for those times when our tender hearts are aching deeply, Karen

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And they pegged her as a ditsy blonde …


Source Unknown

And they pegged Marilyn Monroe as a ditsy blonde … and … we should be careful we are not erroneously judging a book by it’s cover.  It’s easy to do.

But, I am inclined to think she was on to something here …

What if she is right …?  How would it shift your world if you chose to seek out the potential for light in the seemingly obvious dark?

Karen ❤

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The tree remembers …

Source Unknown but deeply appreciated!

 Enough said … ❤


The Moments Between


One of the hardest lessons for me to learn in my healing process was to let go of the past.  Early in the separation,  I had naively believed that it would be helpful for my former husband and I to discuss the marriage breakdown and even the marriage prior to that.

It took me far too long to realize that I was causing myself ongoing pain and re-opening wounds by doing that.

He did not remember many of the events and words that had cut me open and shattered my heart. Moments and words are seared into my memory forever because they were so shocking and devastating to me. But, he did not remember. So, my pain was minimized or questioned.

The axe forgets but the tree remembers.

For awhile I tried to sort out all the reasons for this or whether he really did remember but was hiding from…

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What next … ?

Source Unknown

Source Unknown

As my amazing 86 year old mother-in-law has often lamented: “It’s always something.”

And, as life unfolds before us … I have learned that she is right.  Sometimes it seems ‘good’ and sometimes it feels ‘bad’.  But for sure, we are always meeting the next something.  We welcome the ‘good’ times with open arms,  but very few of us embrace the ‘bad’ ones.

But … what if we decided to be completely open and resist nothing.

As Byron Katie says, “You don’t have to like it, it’s just easier if you do.”

It’s not like we have much control over  what happens anyway. We like to believe we do but …

May we be wise enough to roll with the punches and make time to savor the joys … because … this too shall pass!

It always does … Karen


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Finding the message in the mess …

When I saw this quote … I noticed my head nodding in solemn but silent recognition that we have a choice about how we will respond when people hurt us.  We can remain victims of their recklessness disregard of our hearts … or … we can choose to look for the lesson in the exchange, decide to find the blessing in the challenge, or as the old adage goes – we can make lemonade from lemons.

It’s not always the easiest choice to make, but it IS the most empowering choice.  Some years ago I was targeted unfavorably by someone in my workplace.  I allowed it all to wreak havoc with my self-esteem for years.  I tolerated malicious gossip and inexcusable deeds to slowly poison my entire workplace.  I kept hoping that if I took the high road and ignored it, it would eventually stop.  It didn’t. My passive response appeared to be an invitation to ramp it up even more.

After one particularly painful assault on my soul … I realized that I could keep turning the other cheek OR I could stand up for myself. I realized I was being offered an opportunity to teach people how to treat me.

And, once I got the message that was tucked into that mess … I unwrapped a whole new cacophony of gifts that were just waiting for me.  Most surprisingly, there were so many blessings tucked into that challenge that I ended up identifying them in another blog post entitled Better Because You Were Not the Least Bit Nice.

As I look back on it now, I can truly say that I am grateful for what I learned … not for what I had to go through to learn it, but grateful for the lessons.  Truly.

Holding hope that you , too, will seek out the messages that might be hiding in any messes you are experiencing, Karen

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