Gratitude List 11/02/2019: Fear Less

Gratitude List 11/02/2019

I feel a case of deja-vu! I’m sure I’ve written about this before (even the title) but it’s something I’m very grateful for.

I really feel like I’m living a new life. A second chance. Two lifetimes in one. To most, my life on the outside would seem very much the same. How it feels on the inside though is completely different. One of the biggest differences is the fear. It’s not like fear doesn’t exist in my life now, but in comparison I feel as free as a bird!

Today I am grateful I’m in less fear when a company do a credit check on me.

Today I am grateful I’m not in fear when my bill due dates are up and coming.

Today I am grateful I fear much less speaking in public.

Today I am grateful I do not fear getting through the day. Today I am grateful I do not fear a relapse.

Today I am grateful I’m in less fear when my phone rings. I don’t have to have it on silent and face down anymore.

Today I am grateful I’m not in fear when I see post on our doorstep.

Today I am grateful I no longer fear being inadequate.

Today I am grateful I fear less being honest and open. A tough one as this fear was so ingrained. Definitely getting better though.

Today I am grateful I’m in less fear when it comes to letting someone down. I never intend to do so, but it is inevitable.

Today I am grateful I’m aware I still fear being late. The consequences are NEVER that bad. One I need to hand over again.

Today I am grateful I do not fear being caught.

Today I am very grateful I am not in fear about my future.

Gratitude List 10/02/2019: Waking a little low

Gratitude List 10/02/2019

Sometimes I wake up feeling a little low. Feeling like there’s something wrong. Am I in fear? Did I say something the night before, something I’m now regretting?

After a short while I reflect on my life, my day, my fears and my resentments. What I realise is there’s nothing wrong at all. My life is good, I have nothing to fear and I’m not suffering with an emotional hangover.

Maybe I awoke listening to Radio Me and all I needed to do was get on my knees and kick-start another day. Did I wake with the spiritual malady intact?

Whatever it is, I really don’t mind. Today I am grateful I am aware of who I am. I am aware that my life is good and I have a lot to be grateful for. I am aware that this is a daily program. I am aware if I don’t do the necessary suggestions then that spiritual malady can manifest throughout the day. Today I am grateful and aware of what I need to do to quickly turn my day around.

Gratitude List 08/02/2019: Spiritual habits

Gratitude List 08/02/2019

My life thus far has created my lifestyle and within my lifestyle there are many things I do on a daily basis out of habit and not necessarily because I want to. Life is like that. I brush my teeth because its good for their health, I go to work because of the income and security, I’ve done exams to further my education and qualifications. I didn’t do these things because of the joy I got in return, I did them because in there own individual way, they are good for me.

Recovery has taught me how my spiritual health is good for me. Very good for me. I’ve learnt there are many things I can do on a daily basis that that will enhance my spirituality. Most of the time I want to do these things because I enjoy them and I feel fantastic afterwards. But I am only human and my list today reflects on the things that like brushing my teeth have become habitual. If I only did things when there was a desire, I wouldn’t get much done.

Today I am grateful that prayer is becoming a habit.

Today I am grateful that meditation is becoming a habit.

Today I am grateful that being honest is becoming a habit.

Today I am grateful that connecting with others is becoming a habit.

Today I am grateful that being selfless is becoming a habit.

Today I am grateful that reading recovery based literature is becoming a habit.

Today I am grateful that being considerate, humble, forgiving and loving are becoming habits.

Today I am grateful that doing things I enjoy is becoming a habit.

Today I am grateful that sharing and listening are becoming habits.

Today I am grateful that practicing gratitude is becoming a habit.

Gratitude List 06/02/2019: My purpose in life

Gratitude List 06/02/2019

Gratitude List 06/02/2019

For so long did I get up each day and just exist. Wander around, do what was expected of me, feed my compulsions, sleep and repeat. I had zero purpose, no goals, no aims and no ambition. Today I am grateful I have found my purpose in life. As the days go by, my purpose in life evolves and progresses alongside my recovery.

Today I am grateful I intend to go out and be the best person I can be.

To seek gratitude at all times, even during difficulties.

To do what is morally right.

To listen to people when they speak.

To remain teachable and open-minded.

To work as hard as I can.

To put in the diligent effort.

To love as much as I can.

To serve and give back to those who have helped me.

To do my bit for the unity. To connect with the people in my life.

To work the program to the best of my abilities.

To use tolerance and consideration when behaviours go against my values.

To be aware and honest with my own behaviours and action, promptly admitting when I’m wrong.

To set a good example to my children.

To improve my conscious contact with God as I understand Him.

To pass on the same message of recovery that was freely given to me.

Gratitude List 02/02/2019: My children ❤️

Gratitude List 02/02/2019

One of my goals in recovery was and is to become a better father to my children.

Today I am grateful I spend less time with my phone in my hand when I’m in their company.

Today I am grateful I take more time to take an interest and help them with their education.

Today I am grateful I show them a lot more tolerance and patience than I used to.

Today I am grateful I am quick to admit when my defects come out and quick to apologise.

Today I am grateful I am not rushing off and either leaving them in the house or the car just so I can feed my addiction.

Today I am grateful I am more open and honest with them.

Today I am grateful I don’t look at them with disappointment. This was a tough one for me to admit.

Today I am grateful I don’t manipulate their feelings into feeling sorry and guilty just so I get what I want.

Today I am grateful I think before I speak. I think about my choice of words and the manner I will speak them.

Today I am grateful our relationships have become closer and more loving. When I tell them I love them, I think they believe me.

Gratitude List 30/01/2019: ‘I can’t. We can.’

Gratitude List 30/01/2019

‘I can’t. We can.’

I have no idea of the science behind unity or whether there is any. But what is absolutely certain, is it works. Unity is empowering. Through unity I have been able to do things I could never do by myself, no matter how hard I tried, no matter what promises I made, no matter what lives I swore on.

All I have to do to practice unity is complete some simple actions. I can attend meetings with like minded fellows, share my experience, express how I am feeling, listen and relate to others, make phonecalls and meet up. When I look at each individual action, why is it I can gain power through unity? Should listening to someone give me power? Should sitting in a room full of like minded people give me power? I can’t see why they should, but they do!! Not just a bit of power, we are talking about an abundance of power which overpowers my compulsion to my illness. Something I am completely powerless over. Fellowships and their meetings have often been described as being magic and I truly believe that.

Unity, through doing some simple achievable actions has given me power. This power didn’t emulate from myself, but from the unity of the fellowship. If I can gain power from unity then I can gain even more through another greater power that can’t be explained? God perhaps.

Today I am grateful you guys and gals.

Gratitude List 29/01/2019: My illness v Recovery

Gratitude List 29/01/2019

My illness v Recovery

A daily battle in my life. Today, the victor was ‘Recovery’. Let me share with you how.

I needed to be honest and tell someone something. My illness created a fear and projected the worse case scenario, as it always does. This led to procrastination which then allowed time for me to become agitated and uncomfortable. Before I knew it, my head was spinning with devious plans to escape.

Prior to working the recovery program, I would have had no answers. I would have continued to suffer in silence. I would have slipped into self-pity and self-resentment. These defects would have festered inside of me and evolved into intolerance and anger. Once boiling point was reached I would have gone about it in completely the wrong way, at the wrong time and hugely harmed this person in the process. I would have stormed off, arrogantly certain I was in the right. That was of course, until the emotional hangover slapped me round the face the following morning as I started to comprehend my actions. ‘What was I thinking?’ I began to ask myself.

Today I am grateful I did not react in this way. Recovery’s counter attack to this fear was to first take me to a meeting, practice unity and give back to the fellowship that saved my life. Once there, the option to chair the meeting was made available to me. Knowing how much selfless acts including service can help my recovery, I wasted no time in grasping this opportunity. Shared experiences reminded me of how far I’ve come and made me realise how small this fear is in comparison to the ones that used to dictate my life. Further service followed as I chose to share the message and not the mess. A suffering newcomer needed to hear it. Leaving the meeting inspired, motivated and spiritually connected I wasted no time in praying to my greater power to remove my fear and direct my attention to what He would have me be. Almost mantra style, I also humbly repeated the third and seventh step prayers. Each time I said them, I felt my serenity, courage and wisdom build up. By the time the conversation came around, I was calm, composed, confident and connected. It wasn’t all easy but the conversation couldn’t have gone better. I was able to remain patient, considerate, tolerant and be 100% honest. I didn’t harm myself and as far as I know, I didn’t harm the other person either. Afterwards, I honestly reflected on this and the rest of my day by doing a daily inventory, promptly admitting when I was wrong. More prayers followed including a sincere thanks to my greater power for my abstinence and recovery. Finally, this list and sleep. It really works if you work it. Sweet dreams all.

Gratitude List 28/01/2019: Family time

Gratitude List 28/01/2019

Yesterday we went out as a family to celebrate two birthdays. Today, my gratitude is based on the simple fact I can enjoy these special occasions.

Today I am grateful I was able to afford a couple of cards and a small gift each rather than turning up empty handed. Again.

Today I am grateful I showed responsibility and didn’t spend more than I could. I stayed within my means rather than feeling guilty and trying to make amends for previous years.

Today I am grateful I didn’t have to manipulate another to help out me out financially so I could pay my share of the food bill.

Today I am grateful I was present and taking in the friendship, love and atmosphere rather than thinking and wishing I was somewhere else.

Today I am grateful for my senses. I was able to see the happiness, hear the laughter, taste and smell the lovely food, and feel the love.

Today I am grateful I was truly happy, enjoying the moment and not having to hide my true emotions with a fake smile.

Today I am grateful I realise how lucky I am to have a family. Its a true blessing. I love them all so much. I am grateful that my illness didn’t ruin any of our relationships. Those that found out have been nothing but supportive and understanding.

The line

Gratitude List 23/01/2019

Today I am grateful for poems like this…

Every minute someone leaves this world behind.

Age has nothing to do with it.

We are all in this the line without realizing it.

We never know how many people are before us. We can not move to the back of the line.

We can not step out of the line.

We can not avoid the line.

So while we wait in line –

Make moments count.

Make a difference.

Make the call.

Make priorities.

Make the time.

Make your gifts known.

Make a nobody feel like a somebody.

Make your voice heard.

Make the small things big.

Make someone smile.

Make the change.

Make yourself a priority.

Make love.

Make up.

Make peace.

Make sure to tell your people they are loved.

Make waves.

Make sure to have no regrets.

Less vulnerable

Gratitude List 22/01/2019

When I look back at the person I once was, it’s not surprising I did some of the things I did. I was riddled with defects – dishonesty, resentment, fear, intolerance, discontentment, courseness, irritability, lustfulness, laziness, arrogance, impatience, selfishness, self-centeredness etc etc etc the list goes on and on. Of course I had strengths of character too, but they were overwhelmed by the defects that were being empowered by my ego and controlled by my self-will. As a result I was very vulnerable to a number of negative reactions.

Through working the recovery program I have learnt how to lessen my defects and strengthen my strengths. Through practicing the principles in my daily life, having faith in a greater power and completing some simple suggestions I gain spirituality. I am improving as a person and that spirituality surrounds me like an invisible forcefield. This, along with the strengths of character that now play a more significant role in my life, I am less vulnerable to my negative reactions that more often than not, used to harm me and others.

Today I am grateful I am less vulnerable to relapsing.

Today I am grateful I am less vulnerable to unnecessarily snapping at my kids.

Today I am grateful I am less vulnerable to telling a lie.

Today I am grateful I am less vulnerable to people pleasing.

Today I am grateful I am less vulnerable to fear and resentment.

Today I am grateful I am less vulnerable to being arrested for a dishonest act.

Today I am grateful I am less vulnerable to acting out on my lustful thoughts.

Today I am grateful I am less vulnerable to living on the streets.

Today I am grateful I am less vulnerable to going insane.

Today I am grateful I am less vulnerable to self harm or suicide.

The last couple of years in recovery have proven I cannot take my foot off the pedal in terms of my recovery. If I do I simply become vulnerable to all of the above and I do not want any of them anymore!