Posts tagged Courage

More Fun

When I was learning how to be a different kind of person, a member of a group rather than the leader, I had a lot to learn.  One of the simplest things was how to have fun.  At work they made us use these day planners in which we made lists each day of what to accomplish with our jobs.  It worked well for me and helped me be very productive, get noticed, and get promoted.  I figured if it worked so well on the job, it would probably work for the rest of my life as well.

So, I started a list of fun things to do for the year.  To remind myself of my options it made sense to hang it some place obvious – on the refridgerator.  And it worked.  On the list were; try 3  new restaurants this year, go out dancing with friends, have a potluck party, putt-putt golfing, socialize after meetings, playing games and cards, guided meditation, yoga class, go for walks, vacation someplace new, window shop (my budget was limited), museum visits, botanic garden membership, hike in the mountains at least twice a month, skiing, ceramics class, hot air balloon crewing on Saturdays, sketching, day road-trips.  Later, as my budget allowed, I made a list of more restaurants that people said were good and set out to try each one with friends.  It really helped me to have these goals.

Now the list was pretty varied, but for me it was well rounded and got me out of my trend of isolation.  Using a list to spark my imagination about activities really broadened my horizons and nurtured my sense of adventure, my courage and my curiousity.  And, I learned to have fun.  People in the program were great examples to me about the value of getting out of my comfort zone, and trying new things.  I stopped playing it safe and felt the freedom that comes from having new adventures.  It can be exciting.  The trick is to make the time to make the plan to do these new activities.  Then take action on it.  It helps to have a few people to buddy up with too.  But, many times I threw myself into these activities with new people, strangers, and there I made new friends.  Some, I did on my own when necessary.  Many learning opportunities were available because I was into action for me.  And it’s still working!  Perhaps it will work for you too.  Try it and see.

Affirmation for the Day – ” I am trying new things. ”

Remember to say the affirmation at least 3 times whenever you remember it, preferably in front of a mirror.

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Courage Pays

It takes great courage to face our darker side, the wreckage of our past.  When we honestly review the hurtful things we’ve done to others, and to ourselves it can be very painful.  We experience the actual feeling of emotions that we’ve avoided for years, or in some cases decades.

And we are not alone in this.  Most everything that I’ve heard when listening to someone’s 5th Step I’ve heard someone else talk about before.  These verbal revelations do not make me think any less of the people who share them.  On the contrary, I think more of them for having the courage to be so rigorously honest and allow themselves to be vulnerable with these disclosures.  It is a great honor to be entrusted with this information as a confidential partner in their recovery journey.  The fear involved can be paralyzing, even causing some people to stop breathing until I gently remind them to take some deep breaths.

And, they are not alone.  The stories they’ve carried around with them all these years that have caused shame and guilt and self-loathing are finally released and so are they from the darkness and isolation each story imposed.  The pain maintained by these secrets has less to feast on as people continue working through the Steps.  From Step 4 through Step 9 and 10, we are purging the obstacles to a happy, joyous and free life.  Free of restrictions from experiencing a new paradigm of how life can be for us.  We begin to see what is working, we can live in fellowship with others and things do get better.  The people in 12 Step programs will be there for us as we approach, and take the leap of faith over each hurdle on the journey.

Affirmation for the Day – ” I am walking through the fear.”

Remember to say the affirmation at least 3 times whenever you remember it, preferably in front of a mirror.

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Courage

 2005-01-21-water-lilies-1

The people I sponsor face new situations on a regular basis.  Since most of them are new to the program and/or still working through the 12 Steps they are learning to face life on life’s terms from a new perspective.

I’m inspired each week by the courage and compassion they’re demonstrating and learning as they use the tools of the program to help them.  They’re learning that they never have to face anything alone because this is a “We” program.  They call me and others in the program for support.  Some of them still call way after the fact.  Their opportunity is to learn to call in the midst of a situation, or before it comes up if that’s possible.  Some do call prior to events, when they find themselves confused about choices and options.  They now have people in the program from whom to glean “what works”.

Choosing from these new options, they now go forward knowing they are never alone.  Courage doesn’t mean there is no fear – the fear is just a signal of potential change.  New members meet that change with the support of AA and Alanon.  Their Higher Power guides and is present for them in the face of every challenge they encounter.  Now, they can let that connection with their Higher Power and the sharing of others demonstrate how to bring compassion and respect into these life events, and help them practice the Principles in all their affairs.  They too become examples of experience, strength and hope to share back with the rest of us.  They are examples of courage and dignity.

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Affirmation for the Day – ” I am Divingely supported and guided.”

Remember to say the affirmation at least 3 times whenever you remember it, preferably in front of a mirror.

Course In Miracles Lesson – I am entrusted with the gifts of God.

Practice – I am entrusted with the gifts of God.

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