Patience, love.

alamo square morning


If you’ve listened to any of my guided meditations, you know I talk a lot about being curious and kind.

That’s because we tend to be impatient and critical with ourselves.

There is a little voice inside my head that whispers “Faster, hurry up now, come on, everyone else is way ahead of you, get it together now, let’s go, no time to waste, why can’t you get this done already?

Patience is not what I’m best at.

For most of my life, I thought that patience was the same as waiting passively — like a wall-flower, hoping someone will come invite me to dance.  Patience felt powerless.

And then I had a realization:

That patience was really about being kind to myself (and others) when I felt irritated and pushy about things not unfolding along my preferred timeline.

Sometimes life takes its own time with things.

There is a distance between how things are now, and how you would like them to be.
How do you handle the gap?

Can you be present, and patient, in this moment?

Patience can still have action and power — a gentle persistence — but without being pushy or critical or irritable.  Patience is about kindness with the gap, kindness with timing, kindness with yourself and others.

It’s not always easy to be a human.

Our minds get a little crazy.  Our hearts get stormy.  Our bodies don’t always behave as we’d like — aging, illness, and unexpected injury all play their part within our lives.

It’s not always easy to be a human.

There can be a painful gap between how things are now, and how we would like them to be, and the timing might be outside our control.  Sometimes we fall into that gap — obsess over it — and it hurts very much when we are caught there.

That’s why this constant practice of kindness, towards yourself.  This practice of compassion.

Not always easy.

But also — remember — this is temporary.

One day, we each get to experience the end of life.  Our own, and of those we love.  That part is not easy.  But it is a part of being alive.

That is what makes this life — your life — so sacred.
That is what makes each moment — bitter, sweet, sour, salty — so precious.

That is why you are so worthy of love, and care, and patience, and kindness.   Because this one life is temporary.  And all the experiences and emotions that come along the way, well, that’s part of the journey.

What a sacred adventure this life is.


Patience, love.  And tenderness for all you experience, and all the challenge and beauty of being a human.


Kim Nicol - Sept 2014


For most of my life I completely dismissed meditation as boring rubbish.  Sure, it was ok for the hippies, flakes, and losers — but I was a real person, with a real job and a real life!  Who has time to meditate?  And why on earth would you want to sit around and do. . . nothing?

It made no sense to me.

And I grew up in Santa Cruz, a beautiful sea-side town affectionally known to many for its hippie vibe.

So it’s funny that I teach people how to meditate and practice mindfulness in daily life.

What changed?

Well, I found a teacher.  Not that I was looking for one.  But a series of random events brought me to a small group class, and that was the beginning of taking the “meh” out of “meditation.”

My first big insights:

I didn’t have to be sitting on the floor, wearing weird clothes, with incense smoldering in the corner.  It was something I could do in a chair, in my work clothes.  No incense required.

It wasn’t about sitting and closing my eyes, and then waiting for something to happen.  It was about becoming more observant and aware of what was happening right in front of me.  I felt like a scientist, or an anthropologist.

I’d feel more relaxed and energized. . . at the same time!

My home practice could be just 5 minutes. . . and it still worked!  I’d go to class once a week for a longer practice and group discussion, then practice on my own in these bite-size meditations that fit my life.  Awesome.

It was a revelation.

Meditation gave me a fresh perspective on my inner thoughts and emotions, and also a new way to think about the challenges of work and relationships.  It let me see things in a new light.  Gave me a fresh perspective.

Which changes everything.

Once you see something, you can’t un-see it.  And once I saw for myself how useful, practical, and awesome meditation was, I couldn’t not practice.  And I couldn’t not share it with others.

And that leads me to the whole point of this post, which is to tell you to read this post by my friend Heath.  He heard my interview on The App Guy podcast, and reached out to me with some questions.  I pointed him in the right direction, and then, well, you can read what happened after that.

Here’s a quote to get you started:

Being a type A personality growing up, I always cold-shouldered the thought of meditation because it just seemed ridiculous. I didn’t have time for it – I didn’t need it – I definitely didn’t want it. . .


I was living every second in the quicksand, barely keeping my head above the oxygen level. Something needed to change. . .

The story of what changed is so beautiful.  I know I’ve been there.  Maybe you have, too.  I think you’ll love Heath’s story.  I’m happy to have been a part of it!

Listen to my interview with Heath on The Artrepreneur Now podcast.

Listen to my interview with Paul Kemp on The App Guy podcast.

Kim Nicol - meditation and mindfulness coach

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Turning UGHs into HUGs.

My friend Christine is a yoga teacher and international poker player.  She takes her seat at a poker table in Macau, surrounded by Hong Kong businessmen who don’t know what to make of her as she sips her chamomile tea and stretches.  Christine says, “Life, like poker, is a game of skill and chance. You get the cards you get. What matters is how you choose to handle it.”

We’ve all had a moment when it feels like Life has dealt you a sh*tty hand, and sucker-punched you in the gut for no reason. 

Well, a few weeks ago my friend Jenny, who is the photographer behind beards of san francisco, found that all of her gear had been stolen out of the trunk of her car. Thousands of dollars of equipment — gone. UGH. Jenny handled it with extraordinary grace.
Continue reading “Turning UGHs into HUGs.”

Mindful goal setting.

Last year, when I decided to resign from my “safe” corporate job, I knew that I would need community and structure to help me move forward into my new life.  I’ve stumbled through enough clumsy transitions in my life to know that some kind of plan was critical for me — even if my plan was “no plan”, I still needed framework and feedback to thrive.  That’s why the timing was perfect for my InnerYoga teacher training.  It was 13-months of study and practice.  It was the perfect community and support system for me.

And now, as 2013 draws towards a close, I want to share more of what I know about mindful change.  Continue reading “Mindful goal setting.”

Let the pain move through you.

Stay, love, and be willing to breathe in the storm.  Stay, love, and let the tears come.  Sometimes pain comes like a wave.  It builds into a terrible peak and then crashes, threatening to drown you, over and over again.  Sometimes pain gathers and moves in like thick clouds.  Pain can be sharp and bright, achey and dull, immediate like lightning or creeping like fog.  It can be sticky, heavy, and thick.  Or so thin and cold that it burns.

Feel the pain move through you.  Breathe deeply, let your mind, heart, body, and soul be easy.

The impulse is to run. Continue reading “Let the pain move through you.”

Meditation and intimacy.

There is a longing for connection that is part of being a human.  A desire to be seen, heard, and accepted just as you are.  To be welcomed and loved unconditionally.  No masks, no hiding, no posturing.  No matter where you are on your career path, and no matter what status symbols you’ve acquired.  Even if you don’t feel your best (especially then).  Even when you feel far from perfect.  When you’re confused, or frustrated, or just terribly sad.  Yet also:  when you feel radiantly beautiful and strong.  When you feel happy and attractive, and excited for your life.  We wish to connect and be accepted then, too. Continue reading “Meditation and intimacy.”

A gift, with love, on my birthday.

There was a day you emerged into this world, and you were tiny, perfect, and loved.  You were perfect not because of your accomplishments.  You were loved not for your achievements.  You were perfect, because you were here now, brand new to this world and so full of life.  You were loved simply because you were alive.

There were no conditions upon your arrival.  You simply were.  Loved.  So sweetly and powerfully beloved.

No matter what came later.  Continue reading “A gift, with love, on my birthday.”

What to do when the past shows up.

The doorbell rings.  You open the door and it’s your past, looking right at you.  You stare, heart pounding, and think, What do you want?  And it says, What do YOU want?  You think, Oh jeez, are we doing this again?  And it says, I don’t know, ARE we?

You have a couple of options.

You could close the door.  You could tell it to go away.  You could have a melt-down.  Or go through the familiar patterns from before.

You could also open your arms and embrace it.  Hold it close, feel how it feels.  Whisper a blessing in its ear.  And then open your arms and release it.  Let it go. Continue reading “What to do when the past shows up.”