Culture

Over the past year I’ve given my share of charitable donations. The only one that I don’t get a tax receipt for, however, is the monthly donation I give to one place. It’s called the gym. I know, I know, it is not a charitable place, but I am giving them a monthly payment to not go at all, so it kind of feels like it is a charitable donation! When I first got my gym membership, I went to the gym probably 2-3 times per week. Then after a while, it was once per week, then none. My intentions were good, I want to get healthy, but there was this slight barrier. I was too busy. How could I possibly make the time to go to the gym when there were other things that I should be doing? Many of us have had a similar problem. Think about the last time that someone asked us how things were going? We probably responded with, “pretty good, you know…keeping pretty busy!” We’ve also used it to say no, without saying no –...

Years ago, Michelangelo’s neighbour was sitting on his front porch swing and observed Michelangelo rolling a rugged boulder up the street and onto his front porch. He took out his hammer and chisel and began to pound away at the boulder. The neighbour, thinking the man had lost his mind, crossed the street and and said, “Hey Mick, what are you doing hammering on that boulder?” To which Michelangelo responded, “There’s an angel inside and I’m trying to let it out!” Why is it that some people see the boulder while others see the angel? Why is it that when we are in conflict situations we approach these situations from a place of judgement? It’s not uncommon for me to sit down with the two parties in conflict and hear the people say about one another, “They’re being completely unreasonable!” When we are in conflict with one another, it’s easy for us to see that other person as a boulder. We look at the other person and all we see is their complaints, how their actions have affected us, the pieces...

Ah yes, the season is upon us. The season of Christmas full of egg nog, presents, and functions. Work parties, family gatherings, dinner parties, and so much more. It’s festive and fun! What’s not to love? There are gifts, singing, food, spiked cider, family traditions, and I’m just talking about one of those gatherings! You get the point. It’s a happy time of year. Or is it? One thing we know is that when two or more people are gathered, the likelihood of conflict increases by roughly 1000%. We might get stuck in our room with a colleague that only wants to critique everything we do, perhaps our mother-in-law won’t stop making degrading comments about what we wore, or our boss drinks too much nog and starts an unhealthy monologue about your department… Work, family and friend gatherings can bring a lot of stress and anxiety during the holiday season. I don’t want you to feel this way, so here are some tips on how to get through the next couple of weeks of holiday parties…and who knows! Maybe you’ll even crack...