Pat says at RevGals: Our Friday Five is very simple today. Share five ways you've learned to care for yourself when life becomes overwhelming. What does the pastor do after a rough day in the office, or at meetings, or at a bedside, or even, in the pulpit? Share your best five self-care strategies, and, with any luck, we all will learn at least one or two new ones.
(not a pastor, but...)
1) Today I am taking a vacation day to take care of some special tasks. Right now I am running laundry and in an hour I'll go to Jazzercise. It's a paradox: on regular days I am "too tired" or "too busy" to get to exercise class, laundry goes un-noticed even when I am tripping over Mount Washmore, but on a vacation day, it's a special gift to do these things. A great satisfaction.
2) I have this prayer taped inside the cover of the notebook I carry to meetings. I flip over to it often (and sometimes it's what keeps me in my chair in the meetings):
Antiphon (mantra) repeat quietly:
You, O God, endure forever; grant us life by your word.
Canticle: Wisdom 9:1-4, 9-11
God of Mercy,
you have made all things by your word.
In your wisdom you have appointed me
to care for all creatures,
to govern the world in holiness and justice,
with integrity of heart.
Grant me Wisdom, always present with you;
reject me not from among the faithful.
With you is Wisdom, who knows your works
and witnessed the world's beginning,
who understands what is pleasing to you
and what agrees with your commands.
Out of your glory, send Wisdom
to be with me and work with me.
Wisdom knows and understands all things
and will guide and protect me in all that I do.
3) I have weekly standing appointments for coffee (Tuesdays) and dinner (Thursdays) with my BFF.
4) I read for pleasure, voraciously. Sluttily. I read fast and don't apologize for not being sure who is who in the middle of a library book. Then I go on and read some more. Probably 3-7 books a week. There's a cleansing to it.
5) I play Farmville 2. Yes, I am one of those people. My friend Peter got me into it, and it is indeed addictive. Here is the thing: On the farm, I have set tasks I do, and getting them done is very satisfactory. It's like mowing the lawn: instant gratification. It's true, at the end I don't have anything to show for it...like, real veggies...but that's okay with me. I have dancing ibexes that grin at me. :)