Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Friday, May 15, 2015
A Daily Examination, or Inventory
I went to a seminar this morning. The topic of the seminar was self-care, which was helpful to me as someone who works with people. Having so much and such intimate contact with others can deplete me, internally. So, self-care is something I must pay close attention to.
Yes, taking time to do beneficial things for myself is a wonderful way to do self-care. However, there is another way of maintaining balance and caring for myself, emotionally, psychologically and spiritually: doing a regular inventory.
I know about this practice. Yes, because I have learned about prayer and meditation, and learned about the spiritual practices involved in spiritual formation. In other words, I have a good introduction to this spiritual side of things. But—I was also thinking about the 12 Steps of the Recovery program. (Specifically Step 10.)
I have a certificate in Alcohol and Drug Counseling, so I know a few things about the Recovery program. One of the important aspects of the 12 Steps is taking care of one’s shortcomings and mistakes, promptly. In other words, “cleaning my side of the street.” Making sure that there are as few difficulties and mistakes left hanging. I consider this to be an excellent way of dealing with fear, anxiety and resentment, and I have recommended a regular Step 10 to a number of people over the years.
Under the general topic of Ignatian prayer and meditation comes something very similar to the Step 10 inventory: the Daily Examen, or examination of one’s own spiritual state at the end of the day. Perhaps I ought to simply show a brief form of the five-step Daily Examen that St. Ignatius practiced.
- Become aware of God’s presence.
2. Review the day with gratitude.
3. Pay attention to your emotions.
4. Choose one feature of the day and pray from it.
5. Look toward tomorrow. 
I will be looking more closely at this way of praying and taking inventory in the next few days. I am looking forward to it! God willing, I hope and pray that it will be fruitful in my life. Stay tuned.
Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.
 http://www.ignatianspirituality.com/ignatian-prayer/the-examen (A service of Loyola Press.)