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21
Meditations and ponderings / Re: Just For Today
« Last post by CD on April 08, 2015, 08:17:33 PM »
April 8 , 2015

Happiness

“We come to know happiness, joy, and freedom.”

Basic Text, p. 91

––––=––––

If someone stopped you on the street today and asked if you were happy, what would you say?  “Well, gee, let’s see...  I have a place to live, food in the refrigerator, a job, my car is running...  Well, yes, I guess I’m happy,” you might respond.  These are outward examples of things that many of us have traditionally associated with happiness.  We often forget, however, that happiness is a choice; no one can make us happy.

Happiness is what we find in our involvement with Narcotics Anonymous.  The happiness we derive from a life focused on service to the addict who still suffers is great indeed.  When we place service to others ahead of our own desires, we find that we take the focus off ourselves.  As a result, we live a more contented, harmonious life.  In being of service to others, we find our own needs more than fulfilled.

Happiness.  What is it, really?  We can think of happiness as contentment and satisfaction.  Both of these states of mind seem to come to us when we least strive for them.  As we live just for today, carrying the message to the addict who still suffers, we find contentment, happiness, and a deeply meaningful life.

––––=––––

Just for today:  I am going to be happy.  I will find my happiness by being of service to others.

Copyright © 1991-2015 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved
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Meditations and ponderings / Re: Just For Today
« Last post by CD on April 06, 2015, 08:35:18 PM »

April 6 , 2015

Growing honesty

“On a practical level, changes occur because what’s appropriate to one phase of recovery may not be for another.”

Basic Text, p. 105

––––=––––

When we first came to Narcotics Anonymous, many of us had no legitimate occupation.  Not all of us suddenly decide we’re going to become honest and productive model citizens the moment we arrive in NA.  But we soon find, in recovery, that we are not so comfortable doing many of the things we once did without a second thought when we were using.

As we grow in our recovery, we begin to be honest in matters that probably hadn’t bothered us when we used.  We start returning extra change a cashier may have given us by mistake, or admitting when we hit a parked car.  We find that if we can begin to be honest in these small ways, the bigger tests of our honesty become much easier to handle.

Many of us came here with very little capacity to be honest.  But we find that as we work the Twelve Steps, our lives begin to change.  We are no longer comfortable when we benefit at the expense of others.  And we can feel good about our newfound honesty.

––––=––––

Just for today:  I will examine the level of honesty in my life and see if I’m comfortable with it.

Copyright © 1991-2015 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved
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23
Meditations and ponderings / Re: Just For Today
« Last post by CD on April 05, 2015, 07:08:59 PM »
April 5 , 2015

Identification

“Someone finally knew the crazy thoughts that I had and the crazy things I’d done.”

 

––––=––––

Addicts often feel terminally unique.  We’re sure that no one used drugs like we did or had to do the things that we did to get them.  Feeling that no one really understands us can keep us from recovery for many years.

But once we come to the rooms of Narcotics Anonymous, we begin to lose that feeling of being “the worst” or “the craziest.”  We listen as members share their experiences.  We discover that others have walked the same twisted path that we’ve walked and still have been able to find recovery.  We begin to believe that recovery is available to us, too.

As we progress in our own recovery, sometimes our thinking is still insane.  However, we find that when we share the hard time we may be having, others identify, sharing how they have dealt with such difficulties.  No matter how troubled our thinking seems, we find hope when others relate to us, passing along the solutions they’ve found.  We begin to believe that we can survive whatever we’re going through to continue on in our recovery.

The gift of Narcotics Anonymous is that we learn we are not alone.  We can get clean and stay clean by sharing our experience, our strength, and even our crazy thinking with other members.  When we do, we open ourselves to the solutions others have found to the challenges we face.

––––=––––

Just for today:  I am grateful that I can identify with others.  Today, I will listen as they share their experience, and I’ll share mine with them.

Copyright © 1991-2015 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved
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24
Meditations and ponderings / Re: Just For Today
« Last post by CD on April 04, 2015, 04:48:07 PM »

April 4 , 2015

Guarding our recovery

“Remember that we... are ultimately responsible for our recovery and our decisions.”

Basic Text, p. 103

––––=––––

Most of us will face choices that challenge our recovery.  If we find ourselves in extreme physical pain, for example, we will have to decide whether or not we will take medication.  We will have to be very honest with ourselves about the severity of our pain, honest with our doctor about our addiction and our recovery, and honest with our sponsor.  In the end, however, the decision is ours, for we are the ones who must live with the consequences.

Another common challenge is the choice of attending a party where alcohol will be served.  Again, we should consider our own spiritual state.  If someone who supports our recovery can attend the event with us, so much the better.  However, if we don’t feel up to such a challenge, we should probably decline the invitation.  Today, we know that preserving our recovery is more important than saving face.

All such decisions are tough ones, requiring not only our careful consideration but the guidance of our sponsor and complete surrender to a Higher Power.  Using all of these resources, we make the best decision we can.  Ultimately, however, the decision is ours.  Today, we are responsible for our own recovery.

––––=––––

Just for today:  When faced with a decision that may challenge my recovery, I will consult all the resources at my disposal before I make my choice.

Copyright © 1991-2015 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved
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25
Meditations and ponderings / Re: Pocket Sponsor - Book - Quote
« Last post by CD on April 04, 2015, 04:46:57 PM »
Pocket Sponsor - Book - Quote     4/4/15


The diversity of people seeking recovery is extraordinary. Whether an old salty dog, young gang member, grandparent, or teen with attitude, we remember: as cancer is no respecter of victims, neither is addiction. Same disease, same recovery.

'We all came on different ships, but we're all on the same boat now.'
~Martin Luther King
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Meditations and ponderings / Re: Elder's Meditation of the Day
« Last post by CD on April 04, 2015, 04:45:57 PM »
Elder's Meditation of the Day       April 4 , 2015
"You can pray for whatever you want, but it is always best to pray for others, not for yourself."   
--John Fire Lame Deer, LAKOTA
When you are selfish and you pray, you are requesting things to flow only to you. When you are selfless, you are praying for things to flow to others. The old ones say this is the highest form of prayer. Praying this way is according to the Natural Laws.
Great Spirit, today, let my thoughts be about others.
27
Saturday, April 4, 2015
You are reading from the book The Language of Letting Go
Negotiating Conflicts

Recovery is about more than walking away. Sometimes it means learning to stay and deal. It's about building and maintaining relationships that work.
  —Beyond Codependency

Problems and conflicts are part of life and relationships - with friends, family, loved ones, and at work - problem-solving and conflict negotiation are skills we can acquire and improve with time.

Not being willing to tackle and solve problems in relationships leads to unresolved feelings of anger and victimization, terminated relationships, unresolved problems, and power plays that intensify the problem and waste time and energy.

Not being willing to face and solve problems means we may run into that problem again.

Some problems with people cannot be worked out in mutually satisfactory ways. Sometimes the problem is a boundary issue we have, and there is not room to negotiate. In that case, we need to clearly understand what we want and need and what our bottom line is.

Some problems with people, though, can be worked out, worked through, and satisfactorily negotiated. Often, there are workable options for solving problems that we will not even see until we become open to the concept of working through problems in relationships, rather than running from the problems.

To negotiate problems, we must be willing to identify the problem, let go of blame and shame, and focus on possible creative solutions. To successfully negotiate and solve problems in relationships, we must have a sense of our bottom line and our boundary issues, so we don't waste time trying to negotiate non-negotiable issues.

We need to learn to identify what both people really want and need and the different possibilities for working that out. We can learn to be flexible without being too flexible. Committed, intimate relationships mean two people are learning to work together through their problems and conflicts in ways that work in both people's best interest.

Today, I will be open to negotiating conflicts I have with people. I will strive for balance without being too submissive or too demanding. I will strive for appropriate flexibility in my problem-solving efforts.
From The Language of Letting Go by Melody Beattie ©1990, Hazelden Foundation. All rights reserved. No portion of this publication may be reproduced in any manner without the written permission of the publisher.
 
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Meditations and ponderings / Re: Just For Today
« Last post by CD on April 03, 2015, 06:46:41 PM »

April 3 , 2015

For you alone

“The idea of a spiritual awakening takes many different forms in the different personalities that we find in the fellowship.”

Basic Text, p. 49

––––=––––

Though we all work the same steps, each of us experiences the spiritual awakening resulting from them in our own way.  The shape that spiritual awakening takes in our lives will vary, depending on who we are.

For some of us, the spiritual awakening promised in the Twelfth Step will result in a renewed interest in religion or mysticism.  Others will awaken to an understanding of the lives of those around them, experiencing empathy perhaps for the first time.  Still others will realize that the steps have awakened them to their own moral or ethical principles.  Most of us experience our spiritual awakening as a combination of these things, each combination as unique as the individual who’s been awakened.

If there are so many different varieties of spiritual awakenings, how do we know if we’ve truly had one?  The Twelfth Step provides us with two signs:  We’ve found principles capable of guiding us well, the kind of principles we want to practice in all our affairs.  And we’ve begun to care enough about other addicts to freely share with them the experience we’ve had.  No matter what the details of our awakenings are like, we all are given the guidance and the love we need to live fulfilling, spiritually oriented lives.

––––=––––

Just for today:  Regardless of its particular shape, my spiritual awakening has helped me fill my place in the world with love and life.  For that, I am grateful.

Copyright © 1991-2015 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved
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29
Meditations and ponderings / Re: Just For Today
« Last post by CD on April 02, 2015, 06:04:15 PM »
April 2 , 2015


Attraction

“Our public image consists of what we have to offer:  a successful, proven way of maintaining a drug-free lifestyle.”

Basic Text, p. 75

––––=––––

Yes, we are attracting new members.  More and more addicts are finding Narcotics Anonymous.  But how do we treat our newest members when they arrive, worn out from their struggles with addiction?  Do we reach out to newcomers who are standing by themselves at our meetings, confused and uncertain?  Are we willing to give them rides to meetings?  Do we still work one-on-one with the addict who suffers?  Do we give out our phone numbers?  Are we eager to go on a Twelfth Step call, even if it means getting up from our comfortable beds in the middle of the night?  Will we work with someone who has a different sexual orientation or is from another culture?  Are we generous with the gift of our time?

No doubt we were met with love and acceptance by our fellow addicts.  What attracted many of us to Narcotics Anonymous was the feeling that we had finally found a place where we belonged.  Are we offering that same sense of belonging to our newer members?  We cannot promote Narcotics Anonymous.  But when we put principles into action in our lives, we attract newer members to the NA way, just as we were attracted to recovery.

––––=––––

Just for today:  I will work with a newcomer.  I will remember that I was once a newcomer myself.  I will seek to attract others with the same sense of belonging I’ve found in NA.

Copyright © 1991-2015 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved
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30
Meditations and ponderings / Re: Just For Today
« Last post by CD on April 01, 2015, 06:21:45 PM »

April 1 , 2015

Love and addiction

“Some of us first saw the effects of addiction on the people closest to us.  We were very dependent on them to carry us through life.  We felt angry, disappointed, and hurt when they found other interests, friends, and loved ones.”

Basic Text, p. 7

––––=––––

Addiction affected every area of our lives.  Just as we sought the drug that would make everything alright, so we sought people to fix us.  We made impossible demands, driving away those who had anything of worth to offer us.  Often, the only people left were those who were themselves too needy to be capable of denying our unrealistic expectations.  It’s no wonder that we were unable to establish and maintain healthy intimate relationships in our addiction.

Today, in recovery, we’ve stopped expecting drugs to fix us.  If we still expect people to fix us, perhaps it’s time to extend our recovery program to our relationships.  We begin by admitting we have a problem—that we don’t know the first thing about how to have healthy intimate relationships.  We seek out members who’ve had similar problems and have found relief.  We talk with them and listen to what they share about this aspect of their recovery.  We apply the program to all our affairs, seeking the same kind of freedom in our relationships that we find throughout our recovery.

––––=––––

Just for today:  Loving relationships are within my reach.  Today, I will examine the effects of addiction on my relationships so that I can begin seeking recovery.

Copyright © 1991-2015 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved
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