Certain times of the year, we’re called to reflect on the past year. End of the secular year is one of those times. We reflect on our previous year, and make resolutions for the coming year. This reflecting and resolutions time is, for Catholics, Lent.
While it’s not a religious reflection, it was this time of year last year that I changed companies. At one time I swore I wasn’t going to work in The City, yet I began seeking work there-the commute I had was too long, and took 3 hours away from my family every day. Add that up, that’s 15 hours a week, 750 hours a year, or nearly a month and a half every year. And while I still commute 45 min-1 hour every day, it’s productive time, because I ride a bus which drops me within 1/2 mile of my office, and the other terminus is 1.5 miles. So I could walk from home to bus (I don’t, but I could), and I do walk the 1/2 mile to the office and back. On top of that, I have been walking to daily Mass every lunchtime I can, probably 4 days a week. So not only has my commute helped me become healthier, because of built in exercise, my state of mind is easier when I do get home, and I’m more ‘human’ when I get there. On top of that, I cut out a lot of snacking. I gave that up for Lent last year (though I didn’t realize it-I just stopped), and never went back. I eat peanuts now, but that’s healthy. I also eat more fruit. So over the 9-10 months I’ve done this, I’ve taken off 14 pounds. On my big frame it doesn’t show that much, but it does in my physique and in my belt. I’ve also noted that I’m more active. For example, yesterday, a holiday in the office, I spent the morning doing stuff around the house, where in past times I’d probably just veg out on the sofa, or at the computer.
My exhortation to my readers is not about ‘look at what I did’, it’s more along the line of ‘how can you apply this to yourself’. I try not to say something starting with ‘You should…’ without thinking what I should do.
This Lent, I’m trying to pray more, for our Holy Father on his decision, for the Curia, for them to make the right decision (even though that’s protected by the Holy Spirit), and to pay more attention to my Divine Office, Scripture and Catechism reading.