Father Len exposes the dangers of focusing on boosting self-esteem as a means to improve lives.
Father Len shares his favorite method for the difficult and necessary job of curing shame.
Highlights, Ideas, and Wisdom
- Shame can control you and make your life and the lives of those around you miserable.
- Shame is that voice inside your head that constantly tells you that you are worthless.
- Self-esteem programs are not effective for curing shame.
- You have to learn how to love yourself in order to cure shame.
- The practice of self-compassion is the antidote to shame.
- Father Len introduces his version of the St. Ignatius Daily Examen that he uses and recommends to cultivate self-compassion and conquer shame.
- People who are controlled by shame are usually less compassionate.
- People who are able to change the shaming voices in their heads are more likely to develop grit and determination and overcome failures.
- Father Len demonstrates how he used the St. Ignatius Daily Examen to avoid shame and produce self-compassion and personal growth after being a “jerk” to a homeless man and his dog.
- Father Len tells the story of Oprah Winfrey using a daily gratitude journal to help overcome the shame of being raped, having a child out of wedlock and to learn that it’s the simple things in life, not her money, that bring her joy.
- “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings” by Maya Angelou
- “What I Know for Sure” by Oprah Winfrey
- You can pray as much as you want, but it will be hard to hear the voice of the Holy Spirit if the loud voices of shame are playing in your head.
- Shame is connected with low grade physical pain.
- If you are controlled by shame, every failure reminds you what a piece of trash you are.
- If you are controlled by self-compassion, every failure says I’m going to get better and better.
Father Len reveals his 30 year battle with anger and explains why it’s like a cancer that can destroy you unless you learn how to respond to it.
Highlights, Ideas, and Wisdom
- Father Len responds to an email from the mother of a 15-year-old daughter who became depressed and filled with rage over the death of George Floyd.
- Father Len reveals that anger has been one of his most common sins throughout his life.
- Research has shown that nothing rots your body like anger.
- “Anger is rottenness to your bones.” – Proverbs
- “Anger disintegrates community.” – Proverbs
- “A hot tempered man stirs up dissension.” – Proverbs
- Anger destroys wisdom and the ability to make wise choices.
- “A patient man has great understanding, but a quick tempered man displays foolishness, even after he cools down.” – Proverbs
- Anger is blinding. When you’re angry, you always think you’re completely right.
- Anger distorts your view of situations, yourself, your view of the world, and your view of your family. It can make you really stupid.
- “A hot tempered man must pay a penalty. If you rescue him, you’ll just have to do it again and again and again.” – Proverbs
- Anger is very addictive. It’s like the cocaine of emotions.
- Anger feeds on itself. Anger begets anger.
- Anger often obscures truth and leads to denial.
- COVID 19 has become an excuse for anger about almost everything.
- When you’re angry, it’s very difficult to recognize that you may be the problem.
- Sometimes anger is love in motion to a threat to someone you love.
- “Be angry, but sin not.” – St. Paul
- “He that is angry without cause, sins. He who is not angry when there is cause, sins.” – St. John Chrysostom
- The best response to anger is prayer, self-examination, self-discipline, and sacrifice.
- Unreasonable impatience is the hotbed of vices.
- Anger tends to focus you on the problem and obscures the solution.
- Studies have shown that compassionate people are better at defining boundaries of unacceptable behavior.
- “Compassion is the strong man’s tool. Anger is the weak man’s tool.” – Father Len