Thursday, July 31

Banishing Angels, Receiving Care, Singing, Enjoying Authenticity, Being True to My Values

       The innkeeper is tired, needing a break.   Rest is demanding my attention.   Tonight, I shall bed at an earlier hour---for me.   An important appointment awaits tomorrow.   At my best, I want to be.  I eagerly anticipate the visit, the most important of the entire week.  Tomorrow includes three additional clients beyond my normal schedule.  Busy, I will be.

   What am I thankful for? How about this?
1.  I had a two friends hear me out today, at length. One spent time with me in the afternoon, the other, tonight, when I got home from work. The care and companionship they offered helped me relax, feeling loved.
2.  I cleared out a storage unit I was renting.  Saving money is always good. The physical exertion was terrific too.  I needed it.  My work has its stress.  Hefting boxes was a practical way to discharge it.
3.  Last night I played the guitar with someone new.  I enjoyed sharing songs with him that he didn't know, as he played along.  It was nice, singing, too. I even shared a couple of songs of mine.
4.  I gathered with friends who are authentic, genuine, last night.  I love what each person said. No one dominated the evening.  I appreciate the rarity that this group provides. No one spoke from their head.  Everyone spoke from their heart, being present with those there. They didn't try to:
a.  Manage other people's impression of them.
b.  No one tried asserting control, by over-talking, or managing the outcome of the conversation.

      Instead, they said what was alive within them.  It gives me hope for the human race, being with people who can be vulnerable, yet stay in the solution.
5.  I will talk with a loved one soon.  I am eager to discover the outcome of our time. Our times meet my need for compassion, and self-expression.
6.  I am happy seeing someone getting stronger, less passive.  She has a cheating husband who has no conscience, and wants to continue his infidelity.  She stood for her values. Her abusive husband got angry, instead of apologizing for violating his marriage vows. What nerve. Creeps like that pollute our society.  I don't apologize for making this statement.  I don't mind taking a stand for the family and marriage.
7.  I used tissue paper, the kind for gifts to banish more than twenty angels from my house.  They were consigned to five cardboard boxes.  I am not done with this project.  Progress, not perfection.  But enough is enough.  I inherited multiple porcelain angels when moving into my house in June.

     It's great reducing clutter, it provides greater clarity, more peace of mind.

      Someone recently suggested a change to me.  I told him if he wanted to do that, go ahead.  He let me know he had it in mind for me, too.  I told him I wasn't interested.  He asked why.  I told him I didn't need to justify myself .

      His head rocked back when I said that quietly, but firmly. It didn't make sense to him, as he tried persuading me about his idea.  That's okay, the choices I make do not have to make sense to him or others.  They only need to seem right to me.  They do.  This is being internally referented.

      My friend was quiet the rest of the night.  The gratitude?

Gratitude Seven: I love making my own choices, having autonomy.  I enjoy being true to my values, while being calm and courteous towards those who see things differently.  I allow them the freedom to be themselves.  I only ask that they grant me the same right.

How About You? 
What are your gratitudes? Please share with us. Thanks.  

Wednesday, July 30

Gratitude, Entitlement, and Uncertainty ............ 7/30/14

      Tonight, I am introducing a new contributor to the inn.  Please welcome David F.  He is a life-long Bay Area resident, hailing from Palo Alto.  Thank you, David, for sharing your journey towards having greater gratitude!


      Currently my life is in a greater state of turmoil and uncertainty than it has been in a long time.  I’m homeless (well, crashing in a friend’s back room), have minimal income and savings.  The direction forward is not

Tuesday, July 29

The Innkeeper's Conversation With God, The Why of Life's Challenges 7/29/14

Even when the storm involves fighting circumstances
requiring patience, and I don't care to exercise it. 
       I was happy all day.  Speaking with someone special will do that.  Yes, I have a zest for life.  I am the wealthiest man on earth:  I enjoy the work I do, have great loved ones and am making the most of my abilities.

        Besides that, I am one grateful, happy guy.  Abundance is not in how much we have, but in how much we enjoy.  However, as mentioned here,  I am wrestling with a quality that can be tough on a motivated fellow who is action oriented.  Need I say what it is??  Yes, it is that word...

Saturday, July 26

A Lesson In Perseverance 7/26/14

     Saturdays can be a day of weariness.  I feel the weight of a busy, demanding week.  Serving others, dealing with depression, suicidal ideation, abusive relationships, OCD and anxiety takes its toll upon the innkeeper.

     Sleep seduced me.  I spent more time with her this morning.  Good.  A thousand pounds of

Friday, July 25

A Fantastic, Rare, and Unfinished Conversation. Wisdom, Greater Than Knowledge ..................7/26/14

A picture I took a couple of months ago, while at the shore of Half Moon Bay
About an hour before the sun said good night and sank into the Pacific Ocean. 
My Gratitudes for Friday:
1.  I am getting my sea-legs under me.  For the past month-and-a-half I have been getting acquainted with living in a new town, having a new schedule and multiple changes that overloaded my ability to cope, physically, spiritually and mentally. The dizzying effect of these changes, happening all at once,

Thursday, July 24

Grateful for Faith and the Source Behind It........... 7/24/14

     Engrossed in writing this post, I overlooked the deadline.  So, here I am, submitting a post at the earliest  time possible.  I am relaxed, anticipating all the good that will happen today, Thursday.  I am weary, though at ease.  The week has been

Tuesday, July 22

Grateful for Nonviolent Communication, Emotional Object Constancy and Emotional Maturity Gotten by Recovery........ 7/22/14

No, I am not a mortician. No. this is not a picture of
me. But, this is how it was tonight, but I was sitting.
 I know.  Yecch.
The picture below is another version of the same
 thing.  No, I am not a masochist, either. Far from it.
        A better day.  But, contending routinely happens on Tuesday night. Tonight was no exception.  If only it weren't so.  I am not Superman, or should I say, Sir Lancelot.  No one enjoys conflict, even me, the Attitude of Gratitude guy.  My body gets a clammy feeling, a cold sweat overcomes me, dread hangs like a

Monday, July 21

Surmounting Life's Challenges...... 7/21/14

Garin Park.  The San Francisco Bay in the Background. The
 thin strip of land beyond it is the San Francisco Peninsula 
      The innkeeper is happy introducing Poppy Richie, a guest blogger.  She is a long-term teacher in the East Bay.

        The Upper Ridge Trail in Northern California's Garin Park, is accessible after hiking a rigorous ascent with little shade.  The hills are green in the late spring, making this is a favorite hike taken with my Schnauzer-terrier dog Roxie.  The California poppy flowers paint the hills bright

Saturday, July 19

The Week In Review............ 7/19/14

       I am at a loss.  Confused.  Frustrated.  Also elated, encouraged, inspired.  Making sense of life can be futile.  It is often best not

Wednesday, July 16

The Dragon and the Gnat.......... 7/16/14

          Well, today, I faced the gnat that whined in the ear of my consciousness the past week.  I didn't say why I hadn't return his call.  He knew better than to ask.  When arrived at tonight's meeting, my emo-tional pulse was calm, collected.  Thank God for the fortitude gotten from hard work devel-oping my

Tuesday, July 15

Not Letting Others Define Us or Determine Our Moods................. 7/15/14

        I am interacting with difficult people.  Lately, I have been practicing patience and grace while relating with emotionally abusive people.  Now, I can see humor in situations that at one time would have had me shaking with the adrenaline associated with fear.

       My circumstances haven't changed.  I have.  I've learned to not

Monday, July 14

Experiencing An Unpleasant Controlling Person................ 7/9/14

     Hi, fatigued, I am, seeing six clients today.  Great day, though.  Each session was glorious, all were a unique adventure, challenging my training, education and stamina.  I have the world's best clients.

       Yesterday, I wrote about someone trying to control me.  Wrong move.  I am not

Sunday, July 13

An Outside Source is Trying to Control The Innkeeper ...... 7/13/14

I am not a puppet
         I am feeling the effect of a force trying to control me.  No, I am not assaulted by the telepathic powers of an alien from outer space.  Such a creature is not applying supernatural powers, to sway me, mentally.

         No, it is an everyday person who cannot handle the word "no."   Numerous times, this individual has applied different approaches to get my attention and coerce me into following his agenda, do his bidding. That is being controlling. This fellow is crossing boundaries.  I don't care for it.  He is not respecting my right as an adult.  I can disagree, free to make choices, whether he likes them or not.

          I am glad I am not codependent, otherwise I would yield to the pressure, doing something I don't care to perform, to please someone I don't know, who doesn't care about me or my values.

         Boy, is this person making a mistake using this approach to motivate me. Being emotionally coerced doesn't work for me.   I need to be respected.

My Gratitudes:
1.  I do not surrender to emotional bullies.
2.  I appreciate the discernment I have. Not all people are equals. I steer clear from those who do not consider my values, who try overruling my life, by not noting what I want nor my feelings.
3.  I am thankful for boundaries. They allow me to live with sanity, order and ease.

I'll write more later today.  I am tired, needing to sleep. I will see you after I get rest.

How About You? 
What are your three gratitudes for today? 

Saturday, July 12

The Innkeeper Getting High .......... 7/12/14

     This has been a killer week.  Today was particularly long.  This is when I review the week as it comes to a close.  Would it be possible to hear your high and low points for the past seven days?  Here are mine:

High Points
1.   I am connecting with someone who is exceptionally wise, gifted, and poetic.  My yin to this person's yang is marvelous.  My world is enlarged because of what we share. The caring, empathy and celebrating of life that happens between us is a gift from God I don't take lightly.
2.  I received a gift this week.  It let me know how much a friend appreciates me.  My confidence grows, and I thrive, when others root for me, genuinely caring about my happiness. I appreciate those in my life do not expect favors from me, wanting something from me.  I am a lucky man.
3.  I cried three times in one day, Wednesday.  Good tears.  This is a healthy sign on my emotional dashboard.  As a young man, I stuffed my feelings.  It was a form of not being alive.

      I love participating in life, being present, not trying to control it.  I am joyful about the wholeness that nurtures my spirit, mind and being, because of the recovery I have because of  Al-Anon 
Family Groups. 
4.  This week I got two client approval letters.  I am touched they are happy with how I serve them.  It makes what I do worthwhile.
5.  I was honest about my feelings with someone I treasure.  My heart fluttered as I was vulnerable with this person.  Yes, it was awkward.  Instead of camouflaging it, I spoke what was going on within. I also wanted to understand what was going on within this person.

      I value authenticity in relationships.  I am thankful it is a central characteristic in all the relationships I keep.

     This is enough for now.  I am tired. Soon, I will post my Low Points.  Please let me hear from you. 

Wednesday, July 9

Still Learning, Revisited ................ 7/9/14

       I am re-posting this.  Many of you were not around when I wrote this nearly three years ago.  May it encourage and inspire you.  Here it is:

Innkeeper's update: This ts the number one post.  I'd love hearing your response. What helps you overcome fear? It would be terrific if we could help one another, sharing what works, when confronting the bugaboo of anxiety.

A New Truth Learned This Month: 
         Earlier this month,  I agonized over a business meeting that loomed before me. I was wrenched with fear.  I was to lay out information regarding my finances during our time together. 
         I felt like I was about to be displayed, economically naked, before the two who were meeting with me. I feared they might critical or unsupportive.  Not cognitively, but emotionally, I was disturbed.  
         I called others, receiving support.  I sought prayer and insight about preparing for the upcoming conference. Even while doing so, I knew what I would show them would be fine; I've been writing outlines as a professional since my twenties.
        The two I met in the conference were impressed with what I wrote. I figured that would be the case. I knew this fact even while I was viscerally gripped with apprehension.
         At issue was the hurricane of emotions that violently circled within the innkeeper. The semi-dormant beast of having had a perfectionistic, critical father was raising its head. The creature would return me, emotionally, to a nine year old boy, if I wasn't careful.
       I'm happy letting you know that the steps I took during the days leading up to the business meeting allowed me to subdue this beast that once terrified me. He won't bother me for at least for another month. I'm grateful for the respite. 
       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. I've learned a new truth about personal growth, as I struggled with my feelings, earlier this month, even though outwardly I appeared calm.  During the wrestling match between my present and past selves, I focused on doing what I could, not one day at a time, but fifteen minutes at a time.
       I nourished my present, healthier self. This part of me was able to overcome the siren calls of the scarring, traumatic moments in my past that usually woos the weaker parts of me and awakens the fears that lurk within.
       I have believed recovery is a result of placing principles above the weak areas in our personality. Now, I know personal growth requires more. I'm learning to place principles above my fears, too.
       Regarding those who met with me: they were supportive, caring, open and enthusiastic about my presentation. They shared from their experience strength and hope; they offered excellent insight and asked outstanding questions that clarified what I want to do, to move forward, professionally.  
       Their affirming response was the opposite of my anticipated fears.
So, How About You? 
1. What dragons are you facing, currently?
2. How do you slay the dragons that live within you?
3. Is there anything you do that makes it easier to overcome them? 
4. Who are members of your supportive network?

Christmas in July....................... 7/9/14

      I am enjoying Christmas in July, brimming with presents gotten in different ways.  Receiving unexpected gifts from surprising sources, I am.  One is equanimity.  It is returning.  It took awhile for this to happen after moving several times in the last

Saturday, July 5

God Chooses the Character Defect He Wants Removed.............. 7/5/14

        Good evening.  I was thisclose to being impulsive.  Dangerously so.  No, I was not stand-ing at the edge of a precipice.  My life is so good I would never consider that.

          But, I lie.  I did stand on the edge of

Wednesday, July 2

A Rich Day ......... 7/2/14

Abundance is not in how much we have, but in how much we enjoy. 
         I'm enjoying plenty.

        Hi there.  Thank you, for visiting.  I am happy, proud, confused,  filled with a sense of ease.  Today, spending time with someone special---at length, was encouraging, uplifting. That filled the rest of my day with

Tuesday, July 1

The Antidote to Brittleness and Sharing a Room With a Lion......... 7/1/14

      Frustration reigned early this morning.  I wasn't happy.  But, life happens. The key during such times is responding, not reacting.  Key.

      I kept my presence of mind, regarding this opportunity to practice patience and breathe deeply.  I added a new resource that solves this morning's problem, I hope.  It is important thinking out of the box.  That is the difference between being a manager and a leader.  I am not a manager.  A manager arranges his priorities over

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.