By Portarlington psychologist and Operation Transformation expert Dr Eddie Murphy.
We are nearing a highlight of Operation Transformation; the 5k run on Saturday February 18.
There is an amazing atmosphere as 5,000 participants will the leaders on. It’s such an empowering day. Completion time is irrelevant, like OT it’s the process not the end time.
My time on the Dublin Fire Brigade training ground is coming to an end. Station Officer Dave Connelly is a credit to all our emergency services. These men and women are characterised by great bravery, compassion, teamwork and practicality topped off with an essential black humour.
The experiences they gave our leaders can be called upon long after the OT tent has packed up; jumping off buildings, zip-wiring and fire fighting. These will act as powerful pockets of motivation to use in times of trouble.
Sean was a bit grumpy this week, but still witty. This week we discussed his struggles around his sexuality identity and coming out. There were four years of distress where he kept it all in, contemplating suicide once, but coming out set him free. This was all in the context of a wonderful accepting family. Sean is a great role model to others. I hope this triggers others to speak so that adolescents are not living in distress, but are accepted and loved.
I tasked Sean to keep a gratitude journal to record everyday three things he was grateful for. Try it and you will find gratefulness and positivity.
My heart went out to Marie, she missed her target again. But that’s real life, caring for two under two and trying to meet the demands of the program. She is a brilliant mum and great fun. Planning is the order of the day when your lifestyle is busy. She will be the fastest runner on our 5k, she is the fittest and lightest.
A tough week for Chris. He was sick with a chest infection. He was ‘stood down’ by Dr Ciara and Karl from activity and this really threw him out of his stride. He was worried with the restrictions he would not hit the target, yet he smashed it which shows the importance of the food part of the plan. Suppressing strong emotions is not healthy. Chris is one of the most admirable leaders we have ever had on OT.
Mairead bounced back again hitting her target. She has turned a corner. More than ever we see the smiles which is great. She loves the challenges and excels weekly. This week she won a medal from the fire brigade, on receiving it she was so emotional. We are seeing more smiles, energy and effort so its onwards and downwards (in weight).
Yvonne Keenan Ross
The ‘one family one meal’ is really working out for Yvonne but biggest of all was her husband Steven getting the all clear from his cancer, the relief was palatable for Yvonne as the years, stress and pounds rolled off. To allow OT in to share this shows character. The stress of cancer on families is huge. Key is learning self-care, Yvonne knows this. The challenge, as it is for us all, is putting it into practice.