Reflections with Sue Tredget

It’s easy to feel overwhelmed as Christmas approaches. Just when we need to rest, reflect, replenish and reset, it seems there is an endless list of things to be done.

Sometimes we can lose sight of what really matters and get caught up in the fervour and frenzy, in what we think we should be doing.

This time last year I had just started at PLC and can vividly remember the address from the Chaplain at the staff Christmas service on the last day. He began by acknowledging that while we are a Christian school, we have over 25 different faiths represented amongst staff and students.

I was captivated by the clarity of his words, so much so that I wrote them down in my notebook afterwards. The Chaplain asked the congregation to focus on three things during the holiday season. Here is the essence of what he said:

Firstly, find a way to be happy with who you are. Secondly, take the time to cherish and nourish your relationships with friends and family, with the people who really matter.  And thirdly, whatever your beliefs, faith, religion, or lack thereof, try to find the space and time in your life for the sacred and the spiritual.

Keeping Christmas simple

I can think of no better advice. Even if you don’t celebrate Christmas, the end of the year is the perfect time to reflect on what is important, to rest, replenish and reset for the year to come.

We need to remember to simply be as well as do. Less fervour and frenzy, more heart and soul. Fewer shopping malls, more fresh air. Less consumerism, more spirit. Less wanting, more wonder.

So, I’m keeping Christmas simple. I’m nourishing my spirit and feeding my soul. I’m reading, writing and doing the things that make my heart sing. As Ms Begbie advised in last Friday’s Assembly, I’m telling myself I’m enough, just as I am. I’m avoiding the fluff and nonsense, the weight of expectation, rampant spending and false jollity.

I’m celebrating love and life, cherishing friends and family, basking in the southern summer light, looking forward to more learning and more adventures in 2020 and feeling grateful for my many blessings. I will rest, reflect, replenish, reset and remember that this time of year can be particularly challenging for anyone struggling, grieving or carrying a burden.

As for New Year’s Resolutions, I’ll be writing more about that in the first Lighthouse News of 2020. For now, as the school year draws to an end and the long summer break begins, to the Chaplain words I would add just this: be kind. Be kind to yourself and be kind to others. It really is that simple. Happy holidays!

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