Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Lent is not Weight Watchers

After a carb-filled yummilicious dinner of pancakes, I took a walk to contemplate what to do for Lent.

I love how YouTube chooses the most flattering stills of my face for the video. Charming.

I don't want Lent to be another version of Weight Watchers. Even though I'd love to just starve myself and get super skinny in 40 days.
"You can always be thinner... look better.
-- Patrick Bateman in American Psycho
But that's a bit of a self-absorbed Lenten promise. I'm sure God would look at me and think, Wow, she did great. She did 60 sit ups everyday. How holy is she. Sure glad I had my son kick it on the cross so that she could prepare for the anniversary of his death and resurrection by doing sit ups. 

A super rad speaker said once that if you do nothing for 38 days and on the 39th day, you forgive someone that you've held a grudge against, you've done better than all those people who give up chocolate.

Once my mom made my younger sister and I give up fighting with each other. That was probably the hardest Lent for both of us. On day 38, we fought like barn cats and both felt better for it. We had built up a lot of steam.

I could meditate daily. Or reach out to a friend. I could run around the block. Not eat cheese. Stretch. Give up Facebook.


Ooohhh I sensed a lot of readers pause on that one.

Give up Facebook? What is she crazy? Not. Gonna. Happen. 

Ya, that one is a bit tough for me, too, I sheepishly admit.

So reader, got any thoughts about Lent? Got any ideas for this year? Success or horror Lent stories from the past?


  1. You can give up, givin' stuff up, kind of a spin off of keep on keepin' on...but otherwise, Ive got nothin...ooooooo you can give up food all together like a breatharian. I wonder what they give up for lent. Maybe they give up being annoying.

  2. Try Jillian Michaels 30 day Shred (sorry it's not 40 days). This video took 1 inch off of each of my thighs.

  3. I think I remember the no fighting business .Just hthink you didn't have to glue anything together for 40 days

  4. Growing up Jewish, I never really gave this much contemplation... but reading your post here's what comes forward. If Lent is about strengthening devotion to God, wouldn't it be powerful to give up fear for Lent? When fear arises, replace it with "I have faith in God and all is well..." It could really produce some powerful shifts. It's the Lenten Fear Diet!

  5. I have decided to give up Tim Horton's. Better for me and for the earth (a few less roll up the rim cups in the garbage!). Love reading your blog Jan!

  6. I'm not catholic but this is food for thought. I am thrown by all the food-related lenten promises on Facebook. Why not give up road rage? Swearing? Gossip? Saying mean things about people? I'm not catholic but I could give any of those a stab and it would probably put me in the right direction.

    Right now I'm working on giving up swearing and I'm meditating five minutes a day, but that's just a general self-improvement sort of thing without an end-date. I say "flippin" so much now I sound like Napoleon Dynamite.

  7. I think Mandy's onto something. Complaining would be a good thing to give up...but I'm not Catholic or religious at all so I'm just going to go on about my business. I'm sure you'll find something Lent-worthy though!

  8. I'm telling you Facebook is HARD. But its working out for the better because now instead of going on Facebook I get my homework done waaaay faster!

  9. Maria Claire HadzisMarch 28, 2011


    It will change your life!!! :)

    Let me know if you give it a try :)



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