Sunday, October 8

Spiritual Weightlifting----Developing Better Coping Methods 10/9/17

       As we grow in our relationships with others, diffi-culties will arise. Everyone has different values which at times will cause con-flict 

       Our past painful experiences, also leave us with emo-tional baggage. The combination of these two factors---differing opinions and our baggage----makes us rife with buttons and triggers that are easily set off when engaging others.  

       With recovery, we see these difficulties as opportun-ities. They are moments for spiritual weightlifting.  They help us develop our relationship skills. 

       We learn how to say what we mean, mean what we say, but not say it meanly

       Healthy principles are used instead of yielding to anger or passivity.  We are true to our values. We stand by them even when pressured to overlook them. 

    In other words, we are not codependent

    We get stronger when we stop using inadequate coping methods. We no longer react.  We respond, instead.  Re-sentment, fear, passivity, and anger lurk around the emotional corner if we rely on solutions used in childhood, the 3 F's: to freeze, fight or flee. 

      Our relational muscles get stronger when we overcome codependency.  Maturity is demonstrated when we stand in our power.  It is also evident when we using healthy principles instead of letting our insecurities reign.  

       Maturity is having integrity. It is being true to our values and feelings, even when pushed by dominating or manipulative others. 

      The road of life has the bumps and dips of conflicting with others.  One thing that smooths this relationship road is noticing our intent.  Are we connecting with the other person in order to relate, or are we trying to control the outcome of our conversation? 

      The relational road is also less bumpy when we are present and compassionate when relating.  Read  here, for more about that.

       Life is easier when we are connected with emotionally mature, supportive others.  These are our Balcony PeopleSee footnote.  They help us to achieve perspective.  After discussing our concerns with them, once frightening challenges are less disturbing.  

       Recovery reminds us that difficulties are moments where we want to place principles above the vulnerable parts of our personality.  Many times along the recovery road we see we are back at Step 1.  Our life has become unmanageable. 

      This is when Step 2 is handy.  In Step 2 we lean on a power greater than ourselves who can restores us to sanity.  We see things for how they really are.  

      We do not get stuck with defensive hope.  We are no longer immersed with a fantasy. We are in this unreal state when we see what we want to believe. And not the truth. 

      Step 2 is accepting the truth that smacks us in the face, when we are no longer drugged by fantasy or defensive hope. 

      It also helps when we are gentle towards ourselves.  Acknowledging the healthy steps we are taking---even if they are tiny, is a perspective that moves us towards progress and helps us to be patient with ourselves. 
"Perhaps I can let go of all condemnation for this one day.  I will recognize that I am on a spiritual path of self-improvement.  Every tiny step I take on that path moves me closer to wholeness, health, and serenity."   Al-Anon Family Groups Inc., Courage to Change, 2nd Edit.Virginia Beach, 1992, 19. Print.
      As we get stronger, we become more comfortable becoming true to our values, dreams, and decisions.  We realize it is okay to disagree. We are able to process conflicts that once would have been disturbing.  

       For more insight and skills that help when encountering a difficult or frustrating situation, click here.  

      During conflicts, the following is helpful:
After years of letting people take advantage of me, I had built up quite a store of anger, resentment, and guilt . …. So many times I wanted to bite off my tongue after saying,“yes, “ when I really wanted to say, “no.” Why did I continue to deny my own feelings just to  gain someone’s approval? ….
The answer became apparent:  What I lacked was courage. Was I willing to try to learn to say, “no,” when I meant no? Was I willing to accept that not everyone would be thrilled with this change? Was I willing to face the real me behind the people-pleasing image? Fed up with volunteering to be treated like a door mat, I squared my shoulders and answered, “Yes.”
..... Do I make a conscious choice about what I say? And when it is appropriate, do I say what I mean and mean what I say? If not, why not? All I have to offer anyone is my own experience of the truth.
‘There is a price that is too great to pay for peace… One cannot pay the price of self-respect.'   Woodrow Wilson     Courage, 207
           We are the average of the five people we hang out with.  Let's make sure these individuals are emotionally mature, kind and positive.  We deserve relationships like that, we really do.

Innkeeper's Note I am working on this post.  It will be revised over the next few days.  This is a rough draft.  In the meantime, "my best is good enough for today."  (Courage to Change, p. 9.)

How About You?
What spiritual weightlifting have you been doing?  Where are you been placing principles above your personality? 

     What a gift it has been, seeing my supportive family expand, as time goes by.  Not only have I a flesh-and-blood family, but an expanded family due to others who are a part of my life. They are my Balcony People.

     These dear ones love and accept me unconditionally.  They are in the grandstands of my life. They cheer me on, as I run the marathon of life.

     They don't give advice.  They share their experience, strength, and hope instead.  They empathize and are available. And that is enough.

Image: Countryside: "Wintry Pastoral" by Tim Blessed.  All rights reserved, used by permission. 

Tuesday, October 3

A Pensive, Subdued Innkeeper 10/3/17

       I am at a loss for words, saddened by the recent carnage in Las Vegas, Nevada.

      A lone assailant shot people who were enjoying an open-air concert.  The death tally so far

Monday, October 2

Perseverance Needed For Progress.......... 10/2/17

The Angel Oak on Johns Island in So. Carolina. 
   The oldest oak tree east of Mississippi. It is cer- 
          tainly one of the most beautiful. 

 It's 1500 years old.  It's 65 feet tall, over 6 stor-
ies. The crown covers 17,000 sq. feet. Its longest
         limb is 89 feet long.

         It's maintained by the city of Charleston. It 
         grew from one acorn. Here's to our growth
Patience With Our Progress

         Today, I'm leaving several quotes. May they help us maintain an Attitude of Gratitude. Avail-ing ourselves to God on a daily basis, seeking  His will, helps our patience

Friday, September 29

Courage and Support Helps Us Face Our Fears 9/29/17

      I hope your day was fantastic.                                                                             If not, you are at the right place.  Having an  Atti-tude of Gratitude is critical if we want to get the most out of life.  It is the for-ward driving perspec-tive that enables us to thrive. 

      For more about that, click here.

Sunday, September 24

Creating A Better Today................ 9/24/17

       Beyond pretense. That was our subject.

      A friend of sever-al decades-----a Bal-cony Person of mine, and I lunched. The freedom enjoyed when facing our vul-nerabilities was covered.

Thursday, September 14

Becoming Comfortable with Discomfort........ 9/14/17

        Feeling elated, frus-trated, excited and dis-appointed at the same time. Embracing multiple feelings, is a sign of emotional maturity.  When we have it, difficulties do not distract us from life's beauty.

         Living by healthy princi-ples---using recovery---crises no longer shock us.  They

Monday, September 4

A Helpful Thermometer of People's Character 9/4/17

Now they are lemon flavored, not lime
   The other day I was talking with someone.

    Not using discre-tion, and being unwise, I said something that made her feel awk-ward. (I bet you would like to know).  She stopped me.

     "I want to be

Thursday, August 31

A Wonderful Event 8/31/17

    There's a wonderful story I want to share.  It happened Tuesday.  I was wrong.

     Someone called me on something I said.  I wasn't wise.  Her correction excited me.  I am thrilled how present  I was when this event took place.

    When we justify what we

Tuesday, August 29

Gratitudes of Another Kind 8/29/17

    It is dismaying.

   The destruction and lives lost in Houston, Texas.  I am with you, I am alarmed and sad-dened with this part of the country devas-ted by Hurricane Harvey.  The Federal Emergency Management Agency says it will be

Saturday, August 26

Happiness Is A Choice, Revisited 8/26/17

       "As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he."

      Abraham Lincoln echoed this thought with,  "Happiness requires very little, it's all in our way of thinking."  [And, I

Quotes from the Posts

"I'm mindful that our thoughts affect the words we use, our words influence our actions, our actions shape our character and our character determines our destiny."

From "My Character Determines My Destiny." To read it, please click here.

"Progress not perfection, is better than no progress at all, especially when we're trying to rid ourselves from unwelcome dragons that dwell within the closets of our soul."

From, "Still Learning" which, within four days, became the most popular post
written. To read it, please click here.

"Worry does not empty tomorrow of its trouble, but it does empty today of its strength"
From the post: "Life Is Not a Correspondence Program." Click here to read it.

"Even though we cannot control our circumstances, we can control how we choose to respond to them."

From, "Handling Stress and Dealing With an Emotional Bully."Click here to read this post.

"Nope, being busy isn't exciting. Boring is good. Because boring is not boring; boring is being healthy, living a balanced life that has serenity"

From: "Do You Know What It Means If You Are Too Busy?" For more, please click here.