Matinee allowance and ‘expecto patronum’


I was recently speaking to a wonderful client about what we allow ourselves and the rules that we make for ourselves. As a hard-working woman (look, there’s a rule already in the way I’m defining myself or you) do you allow yourself to kick back and relax? Do you allow yourself to do this at times when you know you should be working? Do you allow yourself to do it at all?

I am so guilty of this. I don’t watch much T.V. at all. I watched the series of ‘Strictly Come Dancing,’ the final series of ‘Downton Abbey’ and the BBC adaptation of ‘Persuasion’ last year, and that’s pretty much it. I went to the theatre once to see ‘Joseph and his Technicolour Dreamcoat’ which I justified to myself because my daughter was playing the part of Joseph – who became ‘Josephine’ for the purposes of the play.

I read online about box-set frenzies and Netflix splurges and I know what the attraction is, but I’ve never been drawn to go down that route. I think I’m capable of being addicted and that’s why I choose not to play with it.

My current addictions? Courses and training to help me build my business and books (as always). This is what led to me having to apologise for the number of books on hold to the librarian last year.

So if it’s hard to make time for a matinée (which for the purposes of this could be any time of the day) you can decide to do something that won’t in any way improve you at a time when part of you is telling yourself that you should really be working and that you are utterly lazy for wanting to chill out.

Do you remember going to a matinée performance at the theatre? When I was growing up it meant dressing up and once there perching on red velvet coloured seats at the King’s Theatre or Theatre Royal in Glasgow. It meant eating vanilla ice cream out of little round tubs with a small wooden paddle. It meant the smell of the makeup and the smoke machine.

It meant wondering about trap doors and how they changed the sets and costumes so quickly. It meant checking for home train times and coming out of the warmth of the theatre to  a wet Glasgow street to hurry down to Central Station, still full of wonder and still a little in the world created on the stage.

What memories does it bring back for you?

Could you allow yourself a matinée performance now? (even one at home, engulfed in a comfy blanket on the sofa.)

This week I have been enjoying a few ‘matinée’ performances after my little one has gone to bed. I’ve been rewatching the Harry Potter films.

I wanted to share with you the spell ‘expecto patronum’ as an intention for the New Year. Here’s more information about the spell on the Pottermore from J.K. Rowling site.

When ‘dementors’ of worries come your way it can be hard to summon up the faith that you will be safe and guarded. Harry summons up the power to complete this spell by thinking back to his happiest memories.

When you are losing faith when you are plagued with doubt can you summon up or write about your happiest memories?

What would your Patronus be?

Harry’s is a beautiful stag, which you can see an illustration of here. I will be meditating on what my Patronus is. I do know that I also have a flat coated retriever Patronus, who always reminds me of what is fun and good in life and is an expert at taking naps in the afternoon, which for him is a matinée perfomance in which he chases dream rabbits.

Having or choosing to have a Patronus is a way of feeling guarded and safe. Yours may be a guardian angel or more like Harry’s stag. I hope that you have a year of happy memories that you will be able to use whenever you need to summon up your own Patronus.