Allowing our souls to be refined (I)

One of the things that sometimes bugs me, is our obsession with material things. With this I refer to the amount of effort and attention that is given to tangible and measurable matters: appearance, possessions, likes (like on social media).  Around 450 BC, Socrates apparently reprimanded the citizens of Athens for paying too much attention to their status, their good…

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Turning concern into action

The way information comes to us has become a rather fascinating thing. For one, we are not seeking stuff anymore, we are being found by articles, news flashes and petitions.   A while ago, I was having coffee with a wise friend. I ended up complaining, as one can easily do in the company of a caring companion. The root of…

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How do I help someone during a traumatic time?

People often wonder how they can help when someone close to them is going through a tough time, whether due to illness or a great loss (like the death of a loved one or their employment).  The fact is that there is no textbook answer to this question. But there are ways of supporting a friend, family member or colleague…

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Prioritise your inner world

In order to thrive as human beings, we need to gauge the quality of our inner world, including our thoughts. What are we thinking? Do we have recurring thought patterns? Do we find ourselves in a place where we judge our own thoughts as ‘strange’ or ‘abnormal’?  We all have them: the inner microcosms of thoughts and feelings which are interesting and potentially…

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Taking charge of recharging

    This time of the year is for most people a time to rest. But resting is not always simple and without complications. Many of us also find it hard to unwind and don’t always know how to rest optimally.   So you are taking leave from work, you have days (or weeks) off, you have time to recharge.…

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Making sense in a time of mass information

The time we are living in now affords us tremendous exposure to information. We all seem to be involved in a conscious (or unconscious) process to discern how to thrive in a time like this.   Part of this process is to uncover certain illusions that may constrain our well-being.   Hence this piece on three illusions in the time…

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Five keys to better communication

Communication is a crucial aspect in all relationships. In order to communicate, a speaker must convey her/his message in such a way that it is not only received by the listener, but in actual fact heard and where necessary acted upon.  Do consider these five things if you are striving to communicate more effectively.  1. Recognise the patterns As with…

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Room for spirituality

In the last few years, in various contexts, the term ‘spirituality’ has been used with greater frequency than before. We seem to have a preference for this term, being more skeptical about other ways of describing matters of the soul/spirit (like ‘religion’ or ‘faith’). But what is spirituality? ‘Traditionally, spirituality refers to a religious process of re-formation which “aims to…

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Five things long distance running has taught me

  I have not always been an incredibly active person. I started jogging when I was 28, but did not do many races. That changed just under six years ago (I was about to turn 40), when I did my first ultramarathon, the rather challenging Comrades Marathon, run annually over a distance of 89 kilometres (56 miles) between Durban and…

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Teenagers: the times they are a’changing

So now your bundle of joy, that incredibly eloquent toddler and adorable kid has graduated to teenagedom. She is still interesting, but a tad more volatile. He is still full of life, but his activities are now interspersed with prolonged naps.   They also challenge you.   To many parents, being the parent of a teenager is exactly this: a…

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