Daily Suggestions

Daily Suggestions

They are daily for a reason.

What if I don’t drink any water today? Does my body hydrate itself?

What happens if I don’t brush my teeth in the morning? Do they clean themselves?

What if I don’t wash my hands with soap? Does the bacteria just jump off?

No

These are but a few “suggestions” that better my physical health. If I don’t do them, it will be to my own physical detriment in some way or another. And the longer I neglect them, the more they disintegrate. They are all suggestions in a sense that nobody forces me to do them, yet I do them day after day. They have become non-negotiable habits.

But what of my spiritual health? The very thing that brings me serenity, humility, courage, acceptance, sanity, happiness, gratitude, honesty, faith, forgiveness and love. Why would I neglect my spiritual growth? Well I did for decades. I was stuck in ‘self’ and quite simply my life as a result wasn’t pretty reading. Not surprisingly, instead of living alongside the strengths above, I constantly lived in the spiritual malady with defects like resentment, fear, selfishness and dishonesty.

A quote on the word ‘spiritual’ from page 28 in the Orange Book reads ‘Simply stated, the word can be said to describe that characteristic of the human mind which is marked by the highest and finest qualities such as generosity, honesty, tolerance and humility.’

In my humble opinion, and bear in mind I know very little, this is what I get in return for embracing, taking advantage of and practicing each suggestion.

Prayer – humility, gratitude, thankfulness, selflessness, faith

Meditation – calmness, open-mindedness, serenity, mindfulness, high mindedness, spirituality

Gratitude List – gratitude, appreciation, serenity, happiness, contentment

Reading – wisdom, knowledge, open-mindedness, inspiration, motivation

Calling my Sponsor – honesty, willingness, commitment, humility, open-mindedness

Calling Two Members – selflessness, generosity, unity, service, love, compassion, kindness

Inventory – honesty, self-honesty, humility, self-evaluation, looking for the good

The Daily Suggestions, as they are fondly known, aren’t just thrown together without any thought. They are proven. They have worked for thousands of others. They each have the ability to take me out of self and better my spiritual health. For obvious reasons, I wouldn’t want to go a day without sleeping, why would I want to skip on suggestions that give so much back?

Spiritual health is not something I can reach, collect the certificate, and then put down again. Like going to the gym, I can’t get spiritually fit, stop working it and expect to stay that way. I need to look after and nurture it. They say ‘faith without works is dead’, well so is my spiritual health. My illness does not stop. To quote a fellow, ‘my illness is always there in the background doing press-ups’ waiting for me to take my foot off the gas.

Hence these suggestions are daily.

Disclaimer – other than the quote from the Orange Book the views above are expressed by me, an addict who cannot manage his own life, they are not the view of any fellowship as a whole, so take it as you please with a big pinch of salt 😉

Terms and conditions – the daily suggestions work best when part of a bigger program including the 12 steps, 2 home meetings with service and sponsorship 😉

How It’s Working

How It’s Working

Today I am grateful I can completely give myself to this simple program

Today I am grateful I am constitutionally capable of being honest with myself

Today I am grateful I am naturally capable of grasping and developing a manner of living which demands rigorous honesty

Today I am grateful I decided I want what you have and am willing to go to any length to get it

Today I am grateful I am not trying to find an easier, softer way

Today I am grateful I was fearless and thorough from the very start

Today I am grateful I did not try to hold on to my old ideas

Today I am grateful I found Him

Today I am grateful I experienced half measures availed me nothing

Today I am grateful I stood at the turning point. I asked His protection and care with complete abandon

Today is a good day

Another coin has dropped!!

50 days ago another coin dropped. There was no planning. No bolt of lightning moment. The only way I can describe it is: the time was right. I had been through what I needed to and went with the flow when the opportunity presented itself.

As a result I am 50 day’s free from chocolate, biscuits, cakes, pastries, fried chicken, Greggs, McDonalds and those salty ribs I get from the local chip shop. All of which can trigger me into compulsive eating and has done so for the last three decades.

Make no mistake – this a miracle!!

What’s more is, for the first time in my life I don’t want to relapse. A strange thing for someone to say when that someone has struggled with food for as long as he can remember, someone who has been on countless diets and whose weight has continued to go up and down like a yoyo. For a few years now, I have been aware of the insanity around my thinking but I continued to test the water, to put the feelers out and try again. Oh, the great obsession to be a normal eater.

But I have finally accepted my powerlessness over certain foods. Through bitter experience I know where that first bite will take me. It maybe instant, it may take a few days or a few weeks, but what’s certain is I will reach the point of no return. I will cross that invisible line into compulsive eating and the self-pity, self-delusion, self-loathing and dishonesty that comes with it.

So how did I get to this rather serene place? First of all my sponsor suggested I did 90 meetings in 90 days. Thankfully, I quickly committed before my ego got the better of me. And of course, the more meetings I went to, the more shares of experience, strength and hope I heard, the more service I got to do, the more literature I read, the more serenity prayers I said and the more fellows I got to know.

Unlike my other fellowship, I had to grow into this one. The magic wasn’t instant. I had to do the basics and ‘keep coming back’.

I am so grateful for this abstinence. If I take notice, miracles are happening to me on a daily basis – I can turn down a donut when they’re brought into the office, I am not weighing myself numerous times a day, I can leave food on my plate if I feel full, I can attend a buffet and not sample everything, and Christmas is not an inevitable binge.

Today I feel so much better about my relationship with food. I can enjoy what I eat without fear and that’s a blessing.

It’s like a game of ‘whack-a-mole’! What’s next? Bring it on!