Forgive & Let go

We hear a lot about the importanceof forgiving those who have harmed us, but what about forgiving ourselves? Is that important as well? I believe that it is.

When we harm someone it is normal and healthy to feel bad about it, to experience regret and to wish we could take it back or do something to make the person feel better. What isn’t healthy is to continually beat ourselves up for our offense and to determine we are a bad person because of it. The first experience is generally thought of as guilt, while the second is considered to be shame. Shame and guilt can feel very similar—with both experiences we feel bad about ourselves. But guilt can be understood as feeling disappointed in oneself for violating an important internal value or code of behavior. Feeling guilty can be a healthy thing: it can open doors leading to positive behavior change. With shame one can also feel a disappointment in one self but no value has been violated. Shame is incredibly unhealthy, causing lowered self-esteem (feelings of unworthiness) and behavior that reinforces that self-image. As we are learning more and more, shame can be an extremely debilitating emotion.

I believe that self-forgiveness is the most powerful step you can take to rid yourself of debilitating shame. This is particularly true for those who have been abused, but it applies to everyone. Self-forgiveness is not only recommended but absolutely essential if we wish to become emotionally healthy and have peace of mind.

Magical thinking

“Too many people confuse real magic with magical thinking. Real magic isn’t a trick and it transforms our lives. Magical thinking is denial. Real magic is what happens when we break old belief patterns and have the courage to employ the native laws of the Universe” (J. Nordby)

Have a courage to change yourself and your life – you can make it happen 💚

 

Addiction is a family disease

When a family member struggles with active addiction, he or she usually under-functions and behaves irresponsibly. This, too, shapes the behavior of other family members. They typically respond by becoming more controlling and overly responsible. Whenever a family member struggles with any serious ongoing condition, everyone in the family is significantly affected. The equilibrium or balance of the family system shifts as each member changes and adjusts accordingly. These changes usually occur incrementally, subtly, and unconsciously.
The havoc active addiction creates in families and relationships stresses everyone in these “systems”—parents, children, siblings, spouses, partners, close friends, etc. Active addiction destabilizes the home environment, disrupts family life and muddling relationships, and often compromises finances, as well as mental, emotional, and physical health. Without assistance and unless family members and significant others learn and practice how to do things differently, these effects can be chronic and long-term.

Responsible Recovery

“…we accept responsibility for our problems and see that we’re equally responsible for our solutions.”

Basic Text, p. 97

Some of us, well accustomed to leaving our personal responsibilities to others, may attempt the same behavior in recovery. We quickly find out it doesn’t work.

For instance, we are considering making a change in our lives, so we call our sponsor and ask what we should do. Under the guise of seeking direction, we are actually asking our sponsor to assume responsibility for making decisions about our life. Or maybe we’ve been short with someone at a meeting, so we ask that person’s best friend to make our apologies for us. Perhaps we’ve imposed on a friend several times in the last month to cover our service commitment. Could it be that we’ve asked a friend to analyze our behavior and identify our shortcomings, rather than taking our own personal inventory?

Recovery is something that has to be worked for. It isn’t going to be handed to us on a silver platter, nor can we expect our friends or our sponsor to be responsible for the work we must do ourselves. We recover by making our own decisions, doing our own service, and working our own steps. By doing it for ourselves, we receive the rewards.

Just for Today: I will accept responsibility for my life and my recovery

Self Talk

Are you aware of your inner voice – the one that provides a running monologue? Cheerful and supportive or negative and self-defeating, this internal chatter is referred to as “self-talk.” Your self-talk combines your conscious thoughts with your unconscious beliefs and biases. It’s an effective way for your brain to interpret and process your daily experience. However, human nature is prone to negative self-talk, making sweeping assertions like “I can’t do anything right!” or “I’m a complete failure!” We know this negativity can be unrealistic or even harmful, but we do it anyway.

The good news is that you can learn to challenge that negative self-talk, and the  first step is becoming more aware of it.

“If you celebrate your differentness, the world will, too. It believes exactly what you tell it—through the words you use to describe yourself, the actions you take to care for yourself, and the choices you make to express yourself. Tell the world you are one-of-a-kind creation who came here to experience wonder and spread joy. Expect to be accommodated.” (quote: V. Moran)

The power of authenticity

Authenticity is everything! You have to wake up every day and look in the mirror, and you want to be proud of the person who’s looking back at you. And you can only do that if you’re being honest with yourself and being a person of high character. You have an opportunity every single day to write that story of your life” (Aaron Rodgers)

Being in touch with your feelings will make you a better person as well as a better parent and partner. Being true to your emotions can’t help but make you feel better about yourself, for you’re able to be authentic.

When we choose to bury our feelings, we act differently. We may not make ourselves available to others and may withdraw, or just not be fully engaged when we do spend time with other people. At other times, we can react inappropriately because our emotions are pulling us in a different direction from where we really want or need to go. When you express how you really feel (in an appropriate manner), problems get solved, relationship issues get resolved, and life is easier. In addition, you will like your life better because you’re not holding on to unhealed or confusing feelings.

Copdendency

 

Many of us live in denial of who we truly are because we fear losing someone or something-and there are times that if we don’t rock the boat, too often the one we lose is ourselves…It feels good to be accepted, loved, and approved of by others, but often the membership fee to belong to that club is far too high of a price to pay….

Are you codependent? If yes, would you like to change it?

Intensity seeking

Intensity-seeking is an enslavement of our own perpetuation. When we step out of the delirium of always seeking someone new, and meet the same old sad and lonely child within, our healing journey begins. Exhausting ourselves with novelty is a defense against our deepest pain, one that we cannot outrun. But once we stop and feel our losses, we can begin our healing journey and be the authentic, joyous person we were born to be.

Decision-making and addiction

  

The challenge of addiction is to understand how and why addicts are so insensitive to the future consequences of their drug use. When faced with a choice that brings immediate pleasure, even at the risk of experiencing future negative outcomes, addicts appear oblivious to the consequences of their actions. Even more challenging is the understanding of why this same choice is repeatedly made with the negative consequences. Understanding what motivates these decisions is a critical part of prevention and treatment of addiction.

Addiction arises when the automatic system wins the competition against the deliberative system for behavioral control. Both systems are important to forming decisions, and good choices appear most likely to emerge when the two systems work in concert.

Thus, addiction recovery includes restoring the balance between impulse and self-control. Eventually, there must be a connection between these two systems to control the impulsive system to treat the addictive behavior. For example, treating alcoholism is more than just stopping drinking alcohol, it requires to address the forces that compel needs for alcohol. Alcohol numbs the pain and allows one to think that one is doing just fine. Similarly, overeating (food high in sugar and fat) is used to deal with fear, doubt, and insecurity.

Bio-psycho-social model of addiction

In the light of modern knowledge, it should be assumed that there are many ways to develop addiction, and the coexistence of biological, psychological and environmental factors contributes to its formation. None of them is addictive, although in the case of different people, the influence and significance of individual factors may be different. The emergence of addiction must be preceded by a period of using/drinking, sometimes longer and sometimes shorter. Addiction is not a genetic disease. However, in some individuals, biological factors play a significant but not independent role in the formation of addiction.

Internal sources of factors that support addiction development include damage to the body as well as physical and mental illness, a deficit of practical life/social skills and a destructive life orientation. On the other hand, external, situational sources of activating factors include situations of stress and increased risk, permanent damage to important social relations, and negative social consequences of harmful drinking/using in the past. As you can see stop using or drinking is a good beginning of the whole process but to fight the addiction we need much more to change…