Good Days…Bad Days With Maureen Pratt

Good Days…Bad Days With Maureen Pratt

You can be contagious!

posted by mpratt

Maureen Pratt Author PicJust as surely as we allow our bad days to make for bad moods and thus make for more isolation than relationships, so, too, on our good days, our lifted spirits can be the spark that makes for the ultimate in happy contagion – a contagion of goodwill and humor to all.

Far from being flippant, I mean to be very serious. We have more of an effect on others than we will ever imagine, and  when we consciously turn our thoughts to better things, good things, and finding the positive even among a mile-high heap of negative, we can infect others with our mood. We can spread the wealth of well-meaning and well-being.

We can be modern-day bearers of good tidings, with a smile and a kind word, a gentle gesture.

There have been scientific studies of the positive effects of laughter and humor on mood, as well as on the ability to better cope with adversity, pain, and other life challenges. But we don’t really need scientific studies to tell us what we know to be true:  For all the obstacles we face, and for all the “bad” days that may be to come, if we set share our good attributes and attitudes and readily express praise and thanks for the gifts we have, we can start a veritable epidemic of like-hearted goodness that can only lift many spirits and make the world, indeed, a better place.

Blessings for the day,

Maureen

Lazarus and us

posted by mpratt

Maureen Pratt Author PicWhat a powerful story of love and God’s power is the story of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead! And what a blessing that, in Scripture, we have more than just a paragraph of the account. In John, for example, (Chapter 11), we read of Martha and Mary, to whom we’ve already been introduced, and the beginning of the Lazarus story – his illness. Then, we are taken through the story – his death, Our Lord’s cryptic response and then his journey to Bethany. And then, after an exchange with Martha, the miracle of Jesus’ raising Lazarus from the dead.

We who live daily with pain, and especially for those facing imminent death, might look upon the story of Lazarus as an example for what Jesus might do for us physically. Cure us. Take away our pain. Even snatch us from the brink of eternal sleep. And, if we are not cured, or our pain is not assuaged, we might ask, “Why, Lord? Why?”

But is that the point of the story? The point of what God’s love means to us?

As a Christian, I believe in the Resurrection. And I believe that God is all-powerful and can cure or do anything at all at any moment.

But I also know that He has put me on a human journey, and only He knows the outcome. It is for me to accept His will and walk, each day, as closely with Him as possible.

Quick fixes, sudden cures, even rising from the dead – these are certainly within God’s power. But as we continue on, and as His will unfolds, the majesty of God’s presence in our lives is truly in all we do and are – the gift of life so precious that we walk in wonder, even if we do not fully understand the “why.”

 

Blessings for the day,

Maureen

A tip for rising above procrastination

posted by mpratt

Maureen Pratt Author PicPutting off something important? Waiting for the perfect moment before you take action on a step toward a goal?

We all do it, of course. But what separates failures from successes? The ability to throw aside the tendency to procrastinate and, thus, keep on track.

I have to admit, I do at times, procrastinate. But I find I’m doing it less, and here’s a tip that I have used, to great success, to nip that procrastination bug in the bud:

Observe closely exactly when you procrastinate. At what hour, during what task, do you put off doing something that otherwise would send you forward to accomplish a goal or help see a dream become reality.

Do you find that you set down to do said task, only to look at the clock and think, “I only have fifteen minutes, so I’d better not start now?”

Does your energy level dip in the afternoon and, thus, it might not be the right time to do your activity (but you plan it then, anyway, and end up putting it off because you don’t feel like it?)

If you can pinpoint when you procrastinate, and you get out of your own way by moving your activity before or after that time next time, you will soon find you can rise above procrastination – and forge ahead!

Blessings for the day,

Maureen

Oh, that most difficult of questions: How are you?

posted by mpratt

Maureen Pratt Author PicIt’s become a part of our greeting ritual, but it’s also one of the most difficult questions we face.

“How are you?”

Usually, there’s a perfunctory, “Fine. How are you?”

And the answer to that one?

“Fine, thanks.”

And the conversation moves on.

But if you have a chronic illness, you probably have found yourself thinking inside, “No, I’m lying, really. I’m not fine.” or, “I’d like to really say how I feel, but he/she probably doesn’t want to hear the truth.”

So, what do you say?

For me, I try to break it down a bit. Often, I respond, “Spirit-wise, I’m great. But healthwise…” or, I might say, “You know, above all, I’m blessed.”

With very close friends and family, I’ll probably go into more detail, especially if I’m in the midst of or fresh from a flare or other health crisis.  But with strangers, well, I admit I do fall into the “Fine, thanks, and you,” protocol more often than not.

Some languages do have “set” rituals of greeting. I remember when I studied Irish Gaellic, I marveled at the back and forth exchange that took place before a conversation started. It went something like:

“Good day. God be with you.”

“Good day. God and Mary be with you.”

“God and Mary and Joseph be with you.”

etc…

Now, as someone who carries the “baggage” of a chronic health condition, I realize that we lupies and others have our own ritual, individualized, of course, depending upon with whom we’re speaking.

It’s truly like speaking a whole other language, I suppose. One that takes a lifetime to get just right!

Blessings for the day,

Maureen

 

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