Gratitude List 28/02/2019: Definition of a Mature Person Part Four

Gratitude List 28/02/2019

Definition of a Mature Person Part Four

Also see part 1, part 2 and part 3

15. We are not chronic “fault finders”?

Today I am grateful I am not a chronic fault finder. Well at least I think I’m not. Because I now tend to see the good in people and situations, I rarely speak out loud about it. Fault finding tends to be something I keep in my mind, but even that is a rare occurrence. I’m also grateful for the awareness to not be a chronic fault finder when it comes to myself.

16. We plan things in advance rather than trusting in the inspiration of the moment?

Today I am grateful this is getting much better. I was awful at planning. I’d even go as far as saying I didn’t plan at all. I think I was so scared of my future which was once so uncertain. I took ‘trusting the inspiration of the moment’ to a whole new level! I am aware of the fine line between planning and taking my own will back. But through my higher power (and my incredibly organised girlfriend) I find myself more prepared than ever before.

In terms of spiritual maturity:

l. We have faith in a Higher Power?

Yes yes yes! Today I am humbly grateful I have a Higher Power! To say this is vital to my own recovery is an understatement. It grew from a willingness, to a belief, to a faith. Letting go of control is a true blessing. Every time I let go my faith is enhanced by the results that come my way. There’s no better way to find a faith than to take a leap of faith.

2. We feel an organic part of mankind as a whole, contributing our part to each group of which we are a member?

Today I am grateful I do feel part of mankind, especially when I’m spiritually well. Addiction was such a lonely place. Even when I was surrounded by people I (a) felt lonely and (b) craved to be alone and left to my own desires. I also contribute to the many groups I belong to much more than ever before, whether it be the fellowship, my family, my friends, my colleagues. I care little if anyone else does, as long as I do my bit. I do want to contribute a little more to my community, that is an area for improvement.

3. We obey the spiritual essence of the Golden Rule: “Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself?”

Today I am grateful I have learnt to love myself. I am proud of who I am becoming. I have a growing spirituality in my life. Now I love myself I can now love those around me.

Gratitude List 27/02/2019: Definition of a Mature Person Part Three

Gratitude List 27/02/2019

Definition of an Mature Person Part 3 (see part 1 and part 2)

10. We can endure defeat and disappointment without whining or complaining?

Today I am grateful the most positive thing about enduring defeat is I rarely feel defeated. Not in an arrogant ‘I never lose’ way, because I don’t win much either. Plus my football team often get defeated when I don’t expect them too! What I mean is I rarely whine or complain and if I do it doesn’t last long. Wow it used to so different!

11. We do not worry unduly about things that cannot be helped?

Today I am grateful I don’t worry for the right reasons. Before, I didn’t worry about things because I utilised surpression instead, I didn’t have the strength to cope with life’s challenges. Today, I don’t worry because of acceptance. I do my upmost to accept the things I cannot change. I do my best to accept life on life’s terms.

12. We are not given to boasting or “showing off in socially unacceptable ways?

Today I am grateful this has hugely improved. I still occasionally feed my ego and join in with unhealthy banter or gossip, but I do try not too. My boasting has been cut down and replaced with humbleness. I used to crave recognition for everything from everyone. Today I find myself giving praise to others.

13. We are honestly glad when others enjoy success or good fortune. We have outgrown envy and jealousy?

Today I am grateful I do enjoy it when others are successful or have good fortune. I really do. I am quick to congratate them. My envy and jealousy always led to self-pity. Now, I am outgrowing these defects. Practicing gratitude has played a huge role in me appreciating what I have instead of always desiring what I do not.

14. We are open-minded enough to listen thoughtfully to the opinions of others and do not become vigorously argumentative when our views are opposed?

Today I am grateful open-mindedness is now in my life. I admit I had to Google the meaning to start with. Listening to the opinions of others? Me? Never! It was my way or the highway and I would vigorously argue until I proved it. Or I would sit in silence and let resentments spin out of control in my mind. Today, I remind myself to accept people for who they are and accept that people’s views and values will differ from mine.

Gratitude List 26/02/2019: Definition of a Mature Person Part Two.

Gratitude List 26/02/2019

Definition of a Mature Person Part Two. (see part one here Part 1)

5. We meet emergencies with poise?

Today I am grateful this is something I have definitely improved on. For me, I could’ve turned anything into an emergency. I loved to make a mountain out of a molehill! Today, not only do I do not do that, I do seem to be more calm when it comes to pressured situations, including a recent big test.

6. Our feelings are not easily hurt?

Today I am grateful that despite the fact my feelings still get hurt, it’s not as often as before. Sometimes they are hurt easily but when they are, I am aware they shouldn’t be and I can use the tools I’ve gained through recovery to see me through. As a result I respond to any harm (intended or not) so much better than before and less harm is caused in return.

7. We accept the responsibility of our own acts?

Today I am grateful I am quicker to accept responsibility for my acts. Again, I’m no way near perfect but it’s definitely getting better. These days, I tend not to blame everyone else for how I feel. This is hugely down to the fact I learnt where I was to blame in past situations.

8. We have outgrown the “all or nothing” stage, recognising that no person or situation is wholly good or bad and begun to appreciate the Golden Mean?

Today I am grateful I now see the good in people and not only the bad. I used to see so much bad, that even if the good was glaring in my face I would ignore it. This includes the good in myself. As for the Golden Mean, I do feel like I’m living on a more level plane. No more am I riding a corkscrew of a roller-coaster. There’s still ups and downs but it’s more of a caterpillar ride.

9. We are not impatient at unreasonable delays. We have learned that we are not the arbiters of the universe and that we must often adjust to other people and their convenience?

Today I am grateful for my awareness that this needs to be improved. I am still too quick to lose my patience, whether it be with my kids or the traffic. At least I can admit this now and know I’m in the wrong. In the past it was more a case of other people needing to adjust themselves to my convenience. Despite the need for improvement, I’ve come a long way since then.

Gratitude List 25/02/2019: Definition of a Mature Person – Part One

Gratitude List 25/02/2019

l. We accept criticism gratefully, being honestly glad for an opportunity to improve?

Today I am grateful I am learning to accept criticism gratefully. This is not easy, because my default position was to react with arrogance, self-pity, anger and resentment. But I am getting better, I am learning how to deal with my emotions, characteristics and how to let go. Even when criticism does cause me harm, if I manage to bite my lip, I often see the lessons to be learned once the red mist clears.

2. We do not indulge in self-pity and have begun to feel the laws of compensation operating in all life?

Today I am grateful for a huge improvement with regards to self-pity. Sure, it still plays a part in my life but in contrast to what it used to, it’s a million times better. When it comes to ‘the laws of compensation’ (after Googling the meaning) I can safely say I have begun to feel it in my life – it’s very evident in my recovery.

3. We do not expect special consideration from anyone?

Today I am grateful for the progression in this. Early on in my recovery I craved recognition for my abstinence and my efforts. Prior to that I desired sympathy for the difficulties I created. The humility I have gained through the step work has made me realise I am not the arbiter of the universe. I am no more special than my neighbour, I am a being, just like the billions of others.

4. We control our temper?

Today I am grateful for my improved control over my temper. With regards to my girlfriend I feel it has come on tenfolds. I still lose my temper with my kids, but far less often and when I do, at least I have control in a sense of my awareness and desire to keep improving.


Gratitude List 24/02/2019: Beauty

Gratitude List 24/02/2019

An absolutely beautiful (very) early spring day. Its hard not to be outside and enjoy the beauty.

Today I am grateful I can see the beautiful array of blooming flowers.

Today I am grateful to hear the birds singing amongst the silence.

Today I am grateful to feel the sun’s warmth.

Today I am grateful for the fresh air in my lungs.

Today I am grateful to experience everyone’s happiness.

Today I am grateful for the vast, perfectly blue sky.

Today I am grateful for my ability and freedom to go where I want.

Today I am grateful for the sun’s light and the colour it brings.

Today I am grateful I’m in a place where I can enjoy nature.

Gratitude List 23/02/2019: A positive spin

Gratitude List 23/02/2019

My list today reflects on my ability to see the positive side of things. I used to only see the negatives and this naturally led to fear and resentment. These two defects are incredibly disabling. They would physically and mentally stop me from doing something.

In contrast, having a positive outlook means I am inspired and able to enjoy my journey through recovery with hope and strength.

Today I am grateful I saw the positives whilst completing each step of the recovery program.

Today I am grateful I see the positives in doing some simple daily suggestions.

Today I am grateful I can see the positive side of forgiving someone even my ego tells me they don’t deserve it.

Today I am grateful I see the positives in being completely honest with myself and others.

Today I am grateful I can see the positive side of being criticised.

Today I am grateful I see the positives of reflecting on my past.

Today I am grateful I see the positives in making a diligent effort.

Today I am grateful I see the positives to having humility and a greater power in my life.

In the past it was very easy for me to only see the negatives. With that viewpoint I would never have experienced the gratitude I have expressed above.

Gratitude List 22/02/2019: Greater Powers

Gratitude List 22/02/2019

I hope this makes sense…. There’s a point in there somewhere…

Came to believe in power greater than myself. The second step in the program and one I used to stumble on.

Step one was far easier – admitting I was powerless over my addiction and that my life had become unmanageable. But by completing step one, hadn’t I already acknowledged a power greater than myself – my addiction? I’m not suggesting that anyone should hand their lives over to their compulsions, that’s what got me into trouble in the first place. But what of the polar opposite – recovery? In my own experience recovery has overpowered my addiction, it is stronger. Therefore the concept of ‘recovery’ can definitely be one of my greater powers. Recovery is a God of my own understanding. Like my addiction, recovery has given me experiences I never thought possible, so making a decision to turn my will over to the concept of ‘recovery’ is an easy choice and one I have faith in.

My addiction is but one of the many things I can struggle with. My life was unmanageable because of them. Each of them can overpower me if my spiritual connection is low. But today I am grateful for the fact that every negative has an opposite which is positive and even more powerful. I am therefore, surrounded by things that are more powerful than me.

Where there’s addiction there is recovery.

Where there is insanity there is sanity.

Where there is fear there is serenity.

Where there is isolation there is unity.

Where there is self there is selfless.

Where there is dishonesty there is sincerity.

Where there is arrogance there is humility.

Where there’s hate there is love.

Where there is a rock bottom there is hope.

Where there is death there is life.

I would happily get down on my knees and pray to any of them. And do it with a faith that help will come.

Gratitude List 21/02/2019: Another new chapter

Gratitude List 21/02/2019

Bearing in mind moving is traditionally known as a stressful time, the last couple of days have been a breeze. It’s been very busy but other than that, it’s gone as well as it could have done.

Today I am grateful for the preparation that went into the move. I’ve never been so prepared for anything. My girlfriend and recovery have been my guiding forces.

Today I am grateful for the relationship I have with my girlfriend. I don’t think we’ve argued or disagreed once during the move. Seems like a miracle to me!

Today I am grateful for how everyone pulled together. We had help from my son, brother and my dad. We’re very lucky to have their support.

Today I am grateful the boxes are being unpacked. The place is starting to take shape and already feels like home.

Today I am grateful for having a garden. The coinciding sunshine has meant a few cups of tea have already been enjoyed outside in the fresh air.

Today I am grateful I was able to reassemble the IKEA Pax wardrobe with only a few f-bombs. Another miracle!!

Today I am grateful thing have begun to slow down, allowing me to venture in town to a meeting. Time for some fellowship and unity.

Gratitude List 20/02/2019: A blessed time

Gratitude List 20/02/2019

An end of an era at our home as we move to pastures new. 90% of our time here has coincided with my two years in recovery so there are many fond memories.

Today I am grateful for the introduction of gratitude at dinner where all four of us say three things we’re grateful for.

Today I am grateful for all the gathering we’ve had with friends and family. Filling the home with unity and togetherness

Today I am grateful for all the happy celebrations – birthdays, Christmases, New Years, Easters…

Today I am grateful for all the lessons I have learnt.

Today I am grateful for all the jokes and pranks shared between us. My son putting salt in my tea was one I remember well!

Today I am grateful for the growth of the relationship between my girlfriend and my children. A lovely little family.

Today I am grateful for the hope this time has given me for our new home.

Gratitude List 19/02/2019: Awareness

Gratitude List 19/02/2019

This gratitude list refers to my awareness of a particular struggle I’m going through. At this point, I have an awareness and a desire, but no power. Its about time I held my hands up and admitted defeat again. This powerlessness refers to food, and some (including me) may think ‘oh well, it’s not that bad.’ But there are so many similarities between this and my primary addiction and the concerning fact is the similarities are increasing. I need to be honest with myself and get this down in writing.

Today I am grateful I have a growing awareness of the certain’ trigger’ foods I need to abstain from.

Today I am grateful I have an awareness that despite my growing knowledge of certain trigger foods, I am powerlessness over that first purchase/pick up/bite.

Today I am grateful I have an awareness of my powerlessness over the phenomenon of craving. Once I start I cannot stop.

Today I am grateful I am aware I have crossed that invisible line into compulsive eating. I am now, not a normal eater.

Today I am grateful I have a growing awareness of the insanity around my thinking when it comes to my eating.

Today I am grateful I am aware that my compulsive eating is becoming more secretive. As soon as there’s an opportunity to be alone, my mind starts to get excited about what I can eat. I’ve felt this before!

Today I am grateful I have an awareness that being secretive means I’m being dishonest. Not just on a food front but I’m spending money I shouldn’t too.

Today I am grateful I have an awareness of the lack of fight and will power when it comes to eating.

Today I am grateful I am aware of that feeling of inevitability. Accepting I’ve already done the deed before I have. Truly baffling.

Today I am grateful I have an awareness of what I need to do (recovery, unity and service) and what I need to less of (trying to deal with it by myself).

Today I am grateful this awareness and self-honesty has given me some power. Going to Greggs on my way to work seemed inevitable earlier but I’ve managed to walk past with some fight to spare.