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Old 06-15-2017, 06:45 AM   #16
bluidkiti
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June 16

Daily Reflections

OPEN-MINDEDNESS

We have found that God does not make too hard terms with those
who seek Him. To us, the realm of spirit is broad, roomy, all
inclusive, never exclusive or forbidding to those who earnestly
seek. It is open, we believe, to all men.
AS BILL SEES IT, p. 7

Open-mindedness to concepts of a Higher Power can open doors
to the spirit. Often I find the human spirit in various dogmas
and faiths. I can be spiritual in the sharing of myself. The
sharing of self joins me to the human race and brings me closer
to God, as I understand Him.

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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

But even faith is not the whole story. There must be service.
We must give this thing away if we want to keep it. The Dead
Sea has no outlet and it is stagnant and full of salt. The Sea
of Galilee is clear and clean and blue, as the Jordan River
carries it out to irrigate the desert. To be of service to
other people makes our lives worth living. Does service to
others give me a real purpose in life?

Meditation For The Day

Seek God early in the day, before He gets crowded out by life's
problems, difficulties, or pleasures. In that early quiet time
gain a calm, strong confidence in the goodness and purpose in
the universe. Do not seek God only when the world's struggles
prove too much and too many for you to bear or face alone.
Seek God early, when you can have a consciousness of God's
spirit in the world. People often only seek God when their
difficulties are too great to be surmounted in any other way,
forgetting that if they sought God's companionship before
they need it, many of their difficulties would never arise.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may not let God be crowded out by the hurly-burly
of life. I pray that I may seek God early and often.

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As Bill Sees It

Progress Rather than Perfection, p. 167

On studying the Twelve Steps, many of us exclaimed, "What an order! I can't go
through with it." Do not be discouraged. No one among us has been able to maintain
anything like perfect adherence to these principles. We are not saints.

The point is that we are willing to grow along spiritual lines. The principles we have
set down are guides to progress. We claim spiritual progress rather than spiritual
perfection.

<< << << >> >> >>

"We recovered alcoholics are not so much brothers in virtue as we are brothers in our
defects, and in our common strivings to overcome them."

1. Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 60
2. Letter, 1946

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Keep It Simple

AA states that resentments is the "number one offender" among our members, that it puts more alcoholics in the graves than any other thing.---Stools and Bottles

We can get high on anger. That's why it's dangerous. We get a false sense of power from being angry. Our anger turns into resentments. Resentments turn into hate. Hate eats at our spiritual core.
We can get rid of resentments and hate through prayer and helping others. That's why we we're to pray for those who have wronged us, so our hearts don't fill with hate. This why, we use our energy in a healthy way. And our serenity will grow as we see that anger no longer has so much power over our actions.

Prayer for the Day
Higher Power, help me stop using anger, resentments and hate for control over other people and advents I don't like.

Action for the Day
I'll list all the people I'm angry at. I'll say a simple prayer for each of them.

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Walk In Dry Places

Solving our common problem
Recovery
Twelve Step programs bring together people who admit certain behaviors that society often views with pity or contempt. Some of these behaviors, such as alcoholism and gambling, are heavily stigmatized.
Though we often talk about "our common problem", the thing we have most in common with each other is that we're human beings who share the human condition. No one is really immune from the similar problems that beset us.
That's why somebody once remarked, only in half-jest, that "alcoholics are like normal people, only more so." We have to remember that the people around us are no different from us in that they are subject to such feelings as pride, resentment, self-pity, and discouragement.
Our common problem is really that we're human beings who need a spiritual life in order to become our true selves. This can turn a problem into a new life if we accept the program.
Today I'll look upon all people with understanding and acceptance. Everyone shares the same feelings that drive me, and everyone deserves my warmth and understanding.

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Each Day a New Beginning

Wisdom never kicks at the iron walls it can't bring down. --Olive Schreiner
God grant us the serenity to accept the things we cannot change. Many times--yesterday, last week, today, and even tomorrow--we'll come face-to-face with a seemingly intolerable situation. The compulsion to change the situation, to demand that another person change the situation, is great. What a hard lesson it is, to learn we can change only ourselves! The hidden gift in this lesson is that as our activities change, often the intolerable situations do, too.
Acceptance, after a time, smooths all the ripples that discourage us. And it softens us. It nurtures wisdom. It attracts joy and love from others. Ironically, we often try to force changes that we think will "loosen" love and lessen struggle. Acceptance can do what our willpower could never accomplish.
As we grow in wisdom, as we grow in understanding, as we realize the promises of this program, we'll stand ready, as women, to weather all our personal storms. Like the willow in the wind, we'll bend rather than break. And we'll be able to help our sisters become wise through our example.
My lessons are not easy. But they will ease my way. Better days begin, today.

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Alcoholics Anonymous - Fourth Edition

Chapter 10 - To Employers

Of course, this chapter refers to alcoholics, sick people, deranged men. What our friend, the vice president, had in mind was the habitual or whoopee drinker. As to them, his policy is undoubtedly sound, but he did not distinguish between such people and the alcoholic.

p. 149

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Alcoholics Anonymous - Fourth Edition Stories

FREEDOM FROM BONDAGE - Young when she joined, this A.A. believes her serious drinking was the result of even deeper defects. She here tells how she was free.

One morning, however, I realized I had to get rid of it, for my reprieve was running out, and if I didn't get rid of it I was going to get drunk--and I didn't want to get drunk anymore. In my prayers that morning I asked God to point out to me some way to be free of this resentment. During the day, a friend of mine brought me some magazines to take to a hospital group I was interested in. I looked through them. A banner across one featured an article by a prominent clergymen in which I caught the word resentment.

pp. 551-552

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Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions

Step Two - "Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity."

At this juncture, his A.A. sponsor usually laughs. This, the newcomer thinks, is just about the last straw. This is the beginning of the end. And so it is: the beginning of the end of his old life, and the beginning of his emergence into a new one. His sponsor probably says, "Take it easy. The hoop you have to jump through is a lot wider than you think. At least I've found it so. So did a friend of mine who was a one-time vice-president of the American Atheist Society, but he got through with room to spare."

p. 26

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"The secret of self-confidence and courage hinges on the kind of
thoughts you think. In the long run, your subconscious will send
up to you what you send down to it. Take charge of your mind and
begin to fill it with healthy thoughts."
--Norman Vincent Peale

Act on God's will, and you will be led to better things.
--SweetyZee

Education is what remains after one has forgotten everything he
learned in school.
--Albert Einstein

"Don't talk about what you have done or what you are going to do
--do it and let it speak for itself."
--Martin Vanbee

Thank God For What You Have,
TRUST GOD For What You Need.

If every man would sweep before his own doors, the city would soon be
clean.
-- Italian Proverb

Those who dance are thought to be quite insane by those who cannot
hear music.
-- Maggie Erotokritou

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Father Leo's Daily Meditation

LEARNING

"Anyone who stops learning is old,
whether at twenty or eighty.
Anyone who keeps learning stays
young. The greatest thing in life is
to keep your mind young."
--Henry Ford

My life is exciting today because I am learning and creating so much in
recovery. Even things that I thought I understood have a new "ring".
Words, ideas, relationships and the awareness of God are forever
changing - usually for the better.

Sobriety is not boring. It is not stuffy, rigid or restrictive - and
discussions (not arguments) within the fellowship of recovering people
produces fresh insights. Today I am involved in the life of God. I am
creating, healing and forever learning more about the mystery of love.

O Teacher of the Universe, let me seek beyond that which I
understand.

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There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in
Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but
according to the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in
Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.
Romans 8:1-2

“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
Matthew 5:43-48

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Daily Inspiration

Nothing is more important than your own peace of mind and ability to be happy. Lord, help me to remember that I must take care of myself because only then can I care for others.

Confront your problems so they don't gather like weights upon your back. Lord, help me to handle my concerns of today and lay them to rest.

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NA Just For Today

Accepting Life

"Some things we must accept, others we can change. The wisdom to know the difference comes with growth in our spiritual program."
Basic Text, p.92

It's relatively easy to accept the things we like-it's the things we don't like that are hard to accept. But remaking the world and everyone in it to suit our tastes would solve nothing. After all, the idea that the world was to blame for all our problems was the attitude that kept us using-and that attitude nearly killed us.

In the course of working the steps, we begin to ask ourselves hard questions about the roles we ourselves have played in creating the unacceptable lives we've lived. In most cases, we've found that what needed changing was our own attitude and our own actions, not the people, places, and things around us.

In recovery, we pray for wisdom to know the difference between what can and can't be changed. Then, once we see the truth of our situation, we pray for the willingness to change ourselves.

Just for today: Higher Power, grant me the wisdom to know the difference between what can be changed and what I must accept. Please help me gratefully accept the life I've been given.

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You are reading from the book Today's Gift.
Being alive is being creative. You need do nothing but affirm your aliveness. --Gay Bonner
What does it mean to be alive? Does it mean merely breathing, eating, and moving around, or is there more to it? Being alive can mean different things to different people. To some, it's sewing a baby quilt for a new life about to be born. To others, it's singing, or walking, or running. Still others find it in the exhilaration of skiing, or the tropical splendor they find when scuba diving.
Each of us has our own favorite activity that lets us feel our creativity and vitality, that lets us feel a part of the larger world. Two gifts these activities leave us with are joy and energy. Joy is one of the most creative forces we can call on, and energy gives us the power to do it well.
What will my creative activity be today?


You are reading from the book Touchstones.
It's not hard. When I'm not hittin', I don't hit nobody. But when I'm hittin', I hit anybody! --Willie Mays
It seems like some days everything goes our way. Everything falls together in a way that makes life easier for us. Other days are just the opposite; on a bad day we seem to be all thumbs. In our spiritual practice we know we don't control all that goes on around us.
We all are vulnerable to accidents, random misfortune, and illness. Yet, when we don't fight against the events of our lives, somehow things go better for us. We can remember that as difficult as a day may be, we are never alone because nothing can separate us from our Higher Power. When we accept the bad things that come, even though they are unfair, we give them less power in our lives. Then we are free to go forward and leave more room for the good things.
Today, I'll accept the problems I must confront and leave room for the good things.


You are reading from the book Each Day a New Beginning.
The pain of love is the pain of being alive. It's a perpetual wound. --Maureen Duffy
We live in one another's company. We grow to yearn for one another's company at a deeper level. The yearning reciprocated, opens the way to a love relationship, a relationship both blessed and torn by intimacies.
It's human to long for love, to want to shower it and receive it. But the pain of waiting for it doesn't match the pain that accompanies its arrival. Love heightens our sensitivities. Any separations, any discrepancies, physical or emotional, wound the partners in love. The pain that accompanies never having something is less than the pain of projected loss after its arrival.
Love should bring only happiness, we mistakenly think. But love, giving it and receiving it, beckons us to bare our souls, to expose our hidden selves. The fear of rejection, the anxiety that we'll be rejected "when they know the real me" is large and looms over our shoulders.
How lucky we are to have this program, these Steps, which if practiced in all our affairs will prepare us for love and loving. They will help us to live with the pain of love, knowing that it increases our humanity - that it deepens our awarenesses and thus, heightens our appreciation of all of life.
The pain of love increases my rapture.


You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go.
Feeling Good
Having boundaries doesn't complicate life; boundaries simplify life. --Beyond Codependency
There is a positive aspect to boundary setting. We learn to listen to ourselves and identify what hurt us and what we don't like. But we also learn to identify what feels good.
When we are willing to take some risks and begin actively doing so, we will enhance the quality of our life.
What do we like? What feels good? What brings us pleasure? Whose company do we enjoy? What helps us to feel good in the morning? What's a real treat in our life? What are the small, daily activities that make us feel nurtured and cared for?
What appeals to our emotional, spiritual, mental, and physical self? What actually feels good to us?
We have deprived ourselves to long. There is no need to do that anymore, no need. If it feels good, and the consequences are self-loving and not self defeating, do it!
Today, I will do for myself those little things that make life more pleasurable. I will not deny myself healthy treats.


Today I choose to see myself well and whole. Today I put all my energy into positive thoughts, knowing that my body is healthy and strong. --Ruth Fishel

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Journey To The Heart

Seek Freedom and Equality in Love

Are you deferring to someone in your life? When we relinquish control of our lives to someone else, we also relinquish responsibility for our happiness, our well-being, our joy, our growth, and our choices.

It’s healthy and normal to want to be nurtured. A partner can make our lives easier, take some of the load off. We are sent helpers, friends, and lovers. The Divine arm of love reaches out through people, through our loved ones, to bring us the support we need. Opening to and receiving that support are essential to well-being, to joy, to happiness. But there’s a difference between receiving help and support and being controlled. There’s a difference between surrendering to love and surrendering to control.

Relinquishing control can happen subtly, but its effects are powerful. We begin to believe we’ve lost our freedom. We begin to believe that someone has taken it away. We feel stifled, repressed.

Don’t make other people responsible for delineating your boundaries. It’s your job to take responsibility for your choices, your comings, your goings, your well-being, your path. If you feel you’ve relinquished your power, your freedom, take it back. Take responsibility for yourself. You don’t have to defer to anyone. The times of being controlled are past. You can accept nurturing without being manipulated. You can accept love without being controlled.

Set yourself free. Love exists only where freedom exists. Create relationships that are equal. There you will find love.

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More Language Of Letting Go

Deal with manipulation

A few years ago I was in Jordan on an excursion through the Middle East. I wanted to go to Pakistan, but when I got to the Pakistani embassy in Jordan, an official ordered me to go to the American embassy, miles away, saying, “You have to get a piece of paper from your government vouching for you. That’s the only way the government of Pakistan will even consider your request.”

I went to the American embassy in Jordan and stood in line there all day. Finally, when it was my turn, I told the gentleman why I was there. “That’s ridiculous,” he said. “There’s no such thing as an international voucher for people in the United States. That’s what a passport does. It says the American government is vouching for you, declaring you worthy and reliable to travel abroad.”

He began to speak more quietly. “He’s just messing with you,” he said, of the government official at the other agency. “Sometimes they like to play games with people, show them how much power they really have.”

I went back to the Pakistani embassy. When I returned, there was an elderly Muslim man sitting in the waiting room. He wore a turban. His head was bowed. He was reciting the Koran and rubbing his string of prayer beads.

He helped set the tone and reminded me of what I needed to do: calm down, be peaceful, stop resisting, and harmonize with the situation. It didn’t matter if the visa man was wrong and I was right. he had the power. I needed to go to him. I sat quietly waiting for my turn. When I went up to the counter, I deliberately acknowledged his point of view. Then I gently explained that I didn’t get the piece of paper he asked for from the American embassy, because that paper didn’t exist. I explained it was probably the only time in my life. I’d be in this area of the world. I pointed to the poster on the wall. “The Himalayas are so beautiful there,” I said. “If I don’t go now, I don’t know that I ever will. You have the power to say yes or no. And I have no choice but to go along with whatever you say. It’s in your hands.”

He told me to go sit down. I did. Five minutes later, he called me back to the stand. “Here,” he said, handing me my passport. “Enjoy your visit in Pakistan.”

We have a right to get as mad as we want, but sometimes harmonizing can achieve so much more than yelling in indignation or even fighting back. Next time you find yourself in a situation where you’re being manipulated, let go of your resistance and practice harmony instead.

God, teach me the power of moving gently, with humility and respect, through the world.

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In God’s Care

Once you accept the existence of God – however you define Him, however you explain your relationship to Him – then you are caught forever with His presence in the center of all things.~~Moris West
Having our Higher Power is an integral part of how we experience all the hours of a day (whether they hold burdens or blessings) heightens our awareness of the fullness of our life. Believing that God exists for us and in us profoundly changes how we see every aspect of our day. The day and our place in the drama that unfolds take on new meaning and purpose.

A number of us didn’t believe in God when we joined a Twelve Step program. Or if we did, many of us believed in a demanding or punishing God who had no relevance to our daily life. What a difference it makes to let a loving God take charge of our thoughts, attitudes, behaviors, and plans for the future. Nothing can stir much fear in us when we remember that God is right here, now, always.

Today God will be the center of all my activities.

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Day By Day

Taking off the masks

We’re not much different from other people (except that we couldn’t stop abusing mood-altering chemicals). Like other people, we, too, wear masks. We’re afraid that others will find out who we really are, especially since we no longer hide behind chemicals.

But if we work the program, we will get stronger, If we work the program, we won’t need our masks because we will accept ourselves (and others) more.

Can I stop wearing my masks?

Higher Power, help me work the Steps and to accept myself and my recovery.

Today I will practice treating myself well. I will practice being myself with…

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Start with the Heart
Checking in with Your Heart Daily

Every day we experience a magical twilight between our dreams and waking state. During this brief period of time, our minds still remember that all things are possible. We can smoothly transition into our physical world without losing a sense of hope when we check in with our heart center first, before we even get out of bed. Our heart center is the link between body and spirit, instinct and inspiration. It doesn’t take long to hold a thought of loving gratitude for the heart that beats within us. In a mere moment we can review all that we want to accomplish in the light of love. When we get into the habit of beginning our day from the heart, all of our activities glow with the infusion of conscious intent and all interactions are done with compassion.

We can restart our day right now by imagining how love and inspiration feel. As light glows from our heart center, radiating out through our bodies into the space around us, any feelings of stress or frustration seem to melt away. Now, we see each person we encounter as fellow travelers in the journey of life, and every activity becomes part of a spiritual partnership. As conscious participants in the cycle of giving and receiving, we share our light with others as we become enlivened ourselves, with our heart leading the way.

In the intersection where our body and soul meet, our physical heart beats in time with the rhythm of the universe. It does the physical work of supplying our body with life force without our attention, but for its spiritual work, we need to be conscious. When we concentrate on its rhythm and glowing light, we remember that we are spiritual beings having a human experience. Then we know that we can choose any time to check in with our heart center, and in doing so, experience the joy of being in love with life. Published with permission from Daily OM

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A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

The Ninth Step of The Program is: “Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.” To make restitution for the wrongs we’ve done can be extremely difficult, to say the least; if nothing else, it deflates our egos and batters our pride. Yet that in itself is a reward, and such restitution can bring still greater rewards. When we go to a person and say we’re sorry, the reaction is almost invariably positive. Courage is required, to be sure, but the results more than justify the action. Have I done my best to make all the restitution possible?

Today I Pray

May I count on my Higher Power to stop me if I start to crawl out from under my Ninth Step responsibility. May I feel that blessed, liberating wash of relief that goes with saying out loud, to someone I have harmed, “I was wrong. I made mistakes. I am honestly sorry.” May I not worry about cracking the brittle, cover-up crust of my ego, because the inside will be more mature.

Today I Will Remember

Restitution is blessed.

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One More Day

We do not live an equal life, but one of contrasts and patchwork; now a little joy, then a sorrow, now a sin, then a generous or brave action.
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

As our life experience unfolds, we live some days to the fullest and others in a very minimal way. If we focus too much on the less productive days or if we use them only as substandard comparisons to our best days, we may lose sight of the real value and meaning of the time we’ve been given.

A wholesome life, a productive life, a good life — whatever we call it — is not a shimmering length of perfectly woven cloth. It’s more like a patchwork quilt set together by resourceful hands. We cannot choose to discard a bad experience or a poor decision; instead, we piece it into the total colorful work that is life.

Today, I will be more aware of how the contrasts of my life create a unique and beautiful pattern.

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One Day At A Time

MIRROR, MIRROR
"Beauty is eternity gazing at itself in a mirror.”
Kahlil Gibran

As a child, I often looked in the mirror and wished I were a boy. I thought I was ugly, had a deep voice, and was a disappointment as a girl. Even as a young woman I could never enjoy my appearance. I never saw the truth in the mirror. I would always focus on my “problem areas” and feel devastated that this had happened to my body. I felt totally helpless and wanted to cry; but I didn’t cry ~ I ate instead. Compulsive overeating stripped me of my true self. It made me incapable of seeing the truth, feeling the truth, and perceiving the truth.

Since coming to OA the scales have fallen from my eyes. By reading the Big Book, going to meetings, interacting with my sponsor, and working the steps, I have been able to see things as they are. Now I see my true self in the mirror and I can deal with life as it is. I can feel my feelings and know that they are neither right nor wrong and they will pass and change with the wind. This healing has cleared space in my mind and spirit for me to connect with my Higher Power. It has made room for me to grow, to love and care for myself, and to appreciate the body God gave me. When I doubt my perceptions, my feelings, or what I’m seeing in the mirror, I just surrender and remind myself that God has given me new eyes and new tools for living my life. The 12 Steps of OA shine a light into my soul and show me the truth in all areas of my life and recovery.

One day at a time...
I will look at myself ~ in all areas of my recovery ~ and know that what I am seeing is the truth because the light of OA and the 12 steps are guiding my life today.
~ Karen

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AA 'Big Book' - Quote

As we look back, we feel we had gone on drinking many years beyond the point where we could quit on our will power. If anyone questions whether he has entered this dangerous area, let him try leaving liquor alone for one year. If he is a real alcoholic and very far advanced, there is scant chance of success. - Pg. 34 - More About Alcoholism

Hour To Hour - Book - Quote

Tomorrow is not a day to worry about. Yes, there are possible adversities, burdens, and fears but the sun will rise without our control and we know not whether it rises in splendor or behind a mask of stormy weather. Therefore, we leave tomorrow to tend itself.

Tomorrow is a day I will never meet so I stay focused in this hour and tend to my needs now--not project about unknown needs tomorrow.

Anger and Blame

Today, I accept my feelings of anger and blame without beating myself up for them. Feelings aren't facts; they are meant to inform me of what is going on inside me. When I constantly judge myself for what I feel, I make my difficult emotions much more complicated, and they last ten times as long. There is nothing inherently wrong with any feelings - so what if I am angry and feel like getting mad? Accepting this allows the feeling to pass through me. Fighting it keeps me tangled up inside with no way out. Judging myself doesn't help anyone, least of all me. Frightening feelings are just frightening feelings. I do not have to overreact to them.

My own feelings need not toss me in every direction.
- Tian Dayton PhD

Pocket Sponsor - Book - Quote

There are many times when crying is the appropriate thing to do. Tears let us know that you need to be supported and consoled. Do not be afraid to cry. Do not be afraid to support others when they cry.

Tears are liquid prayers.

"Walk Softly and Carry a Big Book" - Book

A good listener is not only popular everywhere but after awhile he knows something.

Time for Joy - Book - Quote

Today I choose to see myself well and whole. Today I put all my energy into positive thoughts, knowing that my body is healthy and strong.

Alkiespeak - Book - Quote

The world is so full of a number of things, I'm sure we should be as happy as kings. - Robert Louis Stevenson.
__________________
"No matter what you have done up to this moment, you get 24 brand-new hours to spend every single day." --Brian Tracy
AA gives us an opportunity to recreate ourselves, with God's help, one day at a time. --Rufus K.
When you get to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on. --Franklin D. Roosevelt
We stay sober and clean together - one day at a time!
God says that each of us is worth loving.
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