Monday Musings…. Working Hard or Hardly Working?

"Find a job you love and you’ll never have to work a day in your life." This was the sentiment written by a few students on a recent assessment. I had to smile when I read it. It’s been quite a few years since this saying has come to my attention - a testament to the fact that we more often hear people complaining about their jobs and the amount of work they have to do. But what really brought a grin to my face was the fact that many college students haven’t even held a part-time job yet, as all of their needs have been and continued to be covered by their parents or the government. No wonder they think they can extend this love-fest! So, it got me thinking – what did they really mean when

Monday Musings… The Heart Beat of Family

In 1986, the doctor sat me down and said in a sombre voice: “Charlene, I have some terrible news. You will never be able to have children.” While most people would be devastated, in my mind I was relieved. Having a family was never part of my master plan for my life. As a young girl, I was more interested in building forts, climbing trees, and skateboarding. I had no fantasies of meeting Prince Charming, having an elaborate wedding with 6 girlfriends standing by my side, and then a perfect little family of one boy and one girl. Nope, not me! I was going to remain single, obtain my PhD, and have my condo in downtown Toronto with my red convertible Volkswagen Beetle neatly stored in the underg

Monday Musings…Anxiety is Not One Size Fits All

With anxiety being one of the number one mental heath concerns, you would think that we would be doing a better job at helping Canadians manage it. I can’t tell you how many times I hear: “Well, they (physicians or mental health professionals) told me just to breathe.” This is followed by a downcast look of doubt and confusion. First off, unless the person is hyperventilating in the office, they are already breathing at a normal pace. It is very frustrating to seek help only to be told something intuitive. This is a band-aid solution and does not address what led to the person’s episode of anxiety in the first place. It seems like we are very good at paying lip service to something that can

Monday Musings: On a scale of 1 to 10, Rate your Level of Pain

In a class recently, I gave my students a list of possible goals they may want to achieve in life. Happiness topped the list for many of them. But what does ‘happiness’ really mean? If you ask Will Smith, in his movie, The Pursuit of Happyness, it’s not letting anyone stop you from pursuing your dreams. As he says: “If you have a dream, go for it.” The movie shows Will, struggling to find his purpose in life and then when he thinks he finds it, he faces continual rejection, failure and hardship. And so, in his quest for a blissful state, he endures suffering. I’m not sure that the students who wrote’ happiness’ counted on suffering being part of the package deal of life. Suffering is the gre

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© 2016 Head Space: Charlene Mahon