Abundance is Just Around the Corner

“Going it alone… is dangerous.” – As Bill Sees It

One of my favorite people, and a sponsee of mine, started putting a needle into his arm again. It’s heartbreaking. But our program always offers hope. With the consistent support, fellowship, and love from others in AA and AlAnon, we all have a chance at a great life, even after a relapse. By attending regular meetings, really digging in and doing the daily deal, and making it the number one most important thing in my life – even more important than my family, kids, work or money — I’ve been given a life beyond my wildest dream. Even so, no one, including me, is immune to relapse. My friend gets these messages, so I’ll say to him and everyone, however bad you may feel right now, this too shall pass if you get back into the solution, get to meetings, and work the program. You are loved and abundance really is right around the corner.  When I step up for myself, and make my program my number one priority, anything and everything wonderful is possible, and… ILML! 

– JamieQ

The Good News

“I am… a victim of my expectations… When I expect others to be what I want them to be and not who they are, when they fail to meet my expectations, I am hurt.” – Daily Reflections

Oftentimes I find myself hoping that someone else will live up to their full potential and be the person I want and know they can be, only to find myself disappointed, again and again. This usually happens when I’m so emotionally involved that I fail to see reality, which is that they’re simply not there yet. All the hoping, wishing, praying, encouraging, pouting and threatening won’t get them there either — instead it just sets me up for frustration, disappointment and anger. The good news is that, with the help of the program and others in it, I’m learning to assess situations more clearly and detach as needed. As our program says “lack of power is my dilemma”. So instead of hoping, expecting and waiting for them to change so both of us can be happier, by simply accepting them for who they are, and focusing on taking care of myself, ILML! 

– JamieQ

The Great Thing is…

“My recovery is a matter of balance.” – Hope for Today 

For an all-or-nothing multi-tasking people-pleasing driven type of person like me, that’s been a pretty big challenge. When I think of balance, even that can seem overwhelming. I start thinking “Ok, I’ll balance working with paying bills, being there for my wife and kids, being of service to my sponsees, working my program, doing my affirmations, my prayers, my yoga, journaling, reading from inspirational books, getting the car washed, working out, getting the laundry done, playing guitar, eating healthy, sleeping, taking care of my clients, meditating, getting into nature, cleaning the house, organizing, fixing some broken things, making some improvements, putting out fires, and sleeping. I’m sure I left out about 20 things, at least, lol. When my brain takes me there I simply say to myself “Breathe James, just breathe.” And then a smile creeps onto my face as I realize there really are no big deals, except to just enjoy this moment. The great thing is that when I stop and work the principles of the program on my own magic mind, it calms me down long enough for me to remember that ILML! 

– JamieQ

Don’t Should on Me!

“It is well, when one is judging… to remember that he is judging you with the same godlike and superior impartiality.” – Arnold Bennett, In God’s Care

This quote cracked me up. If there’s one thing that’s true, it’s that we all know how everyone else should act, what they should do, and what they should not be doing. Did you notice that I used the word “should” three times in that sentence? Have you ever heard the saying “Don’t should on me!”? The truth is, not a day goes by where I don’t take someone else’s inventory. Drivers in traffic, friends, family members, co-workers, people in meetings. I have a very keen eye for noticing what others are doing wrong. And as long as that’s my focus, I can’t be happy or at peace. These days I try to keep the focus on me — specifically on the great stuff in my life, and sharing it with others. Because as long as I’m focusing on things that make me feel grateful, ILML! 

– JamieQ

The Art of Responding

“…although I have no control over other people, I can change the way I react to them.”- Adapted from Courage to Change 

Choosing and using a reasonable response when I dislike or am hurt by another’s actions, words or behavior is one of the most important ways for me to achieve emotional sobriety and happiness. I am extremely sensitive. EXTREMELY! I have a history of not pausing when agitated, not being able to restrain my words or control my actions in response to feeling upset by another. And gracing the space between the impulse and the action has not come easily for me. But by consistently working a daily set of specifically outlined actions designed to increase my connection to the program and my higher power, I’ve managed, little by little, to become better at the art of responding rather than reacting. And when I’m able to do that, rather than jumping into another person’s anger, fears or frustrations, ILML! 

– JamieQ

Free From Suffering

“When we become devoted to loving ourselves and using that love as the standard by which we interact with others, all the riches of life will fall into our laps.” – Until Today 

Now, this is one of the truest secrets of all. We seek desperately to be liked, appreciated and loved by others, yet true abundance comes from learning to deeply love ourselves and our life, then “bringing it” into every relationship and situation we encounter in life. But I must remember that to love others at the expense of loving myself is ultimately unloving for everyone. I know that love is the most powerful thing in the universe. To me, God is Love — the two words are 100% synonymous. By connecting with love, I am propelled into a state of peace and gratitude that’s free from suffering — a wonderful place where ILML! 

– JamieQ

Grace the Space

“… an emotion is just an emotion. It comes, it stays for a while, and then it goes away… Relax when strong emotions come… Breathe in and out… pay attention to the rise and fall of your belly.” – Thitch Nhat Hanh
“And this too shall pass.” – 12 Step Saying

The saying “Feelings aren’t facts,” never resonated with me. Perhaps it’s because the fact that I’m feeling my feelings is a fact, and a good one at that! I no longer need to turn to alcohol, drugs, people or other distractions to get away from my feelings. When I’m feeling highly emotional, breathing is a great, healthy way to grace the space and pause when agitated. My uncomfortable emotions never last forever. When they do come around, I avoid unhealthy behavior by applying the tools I’ve learned in our program, and then, once again, ILML! 

– JamieQ