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Showing posts from October, 2023

Self-Care Menu

So, now that we’re aware that we not only can  partake in self-care but have a  responsibility  to take care of ourselves, how do we do it? Have you ever had a day where you know  you’d be better downing tools and taking a breather but you just don’t even have the presence of mind to navigate how to do that? I hear you!  For that very reason I have put together a menu of self-care options. You can use it for those hectic days that even trying to think of what may help is just too big a task. When I begin to feel overwhelmed, exhausted, agitated or even just a little perturbed I know I need fuel to replenish my resources: faith and self-care are my fuel . I turn to both, and in that particular order.  God first, always. Sometimes it is a short interior mental prayer, sometimes I write my prayer. Sometimes it is reading a favourite daily devotional. Then, I turn my attention to what it is I am in need of; what act of self-care I would benefit from.  By praying beforehand, I keep God pr

Are We Expected to be Perfect?

For a large portion of my life I considered being a perfectionist a positive thing. It meant I strive for excellence in all I do, right? If you’re going to do something, do it right. What it took me decades to see was that this desire for and expectation of perfection kept me so afraid to make mistakes that I often didn’t take action at all. It kept me frozen, unable to make progress, unwilling to admit mistakes, blind to the truth of my situation, unable to do things at all because I was too afraid to not do it right. To not get it perfect. To make a mistake. To fail. And it also meant that I spent my life focusing on the 2% I didn’t achieve, rather than seeing the 98% I did. As Catholics and as children of God, we are called to be saints. Being a saint, though, is not being perfect. Being a saint is saying yes to God . It is doing the next right thing; the next responsible thing; and when we do something wrong, or we make a mistake, or we sin, returning again to try again and do the

I Want Things to Change, Where Do I Start?

So you’ve reached a point in your life where you’re ready for change; where you see that life, and how you feel about it, isn’t working out so well and you’re ready for change. Then what? How do you get from where you are to where you want to be? Well, it would help to know where it is you want to be. Allow yourself to dream . Take a few moments to let yourself contemplate how you would like your life to look in a year. What date is it right now as you read this? Look ahead one year and allow yourself to think about how you’d like your life to be: spiritually, psychologically, emotionally, physically. Better yet, if you’re in a position to do so, write it down.  Three years ago I was feeling too stuck to allow myself to dream, too fragile to begin to look deep. I was feeling stretched; overwhelmed; grieving the impending loss of my dad; experiencing all the heightened emotions within my family of origin that the dynamics around illness and death can bring; nursing my third child, who

Can We Be Happy in This Life?

As I write this, it is the feast of Saint Francis of Assisi, a saint celebrated for his happiness. It can be easy to allow ourselves to be deceived or misled as Catholics…to think that we ought not seek to be happy in this world. We are called to suffer and carry our cross.  We are not , however, called to be miserable in our suffering. It is true that Our Lady told Bernadette “I do not promise you happiness in this world, but in the next”. We ought not assume, though, that this meant that Bernadette was miserable in this world. From writings on her life, we frequently read of how joyful she was; how witty and cheerful. Saint Bernadette exuded joy and happiness because her focus in this life was on the next world; on eternity.  Yes she certainly suffered much; but she suffered joyfully . Happiness from worldly pleasures, worldly desires and whims, is fleeting . This is not the happiness we, as Catholics, ought to seek. Happiness gleaned from living and fulfilling our purpose, thou