Tag Archives: Higher Power

Abundant Life

A friend of mine brought a wonderful quotation to my attention, but she didn’t say where it came from. I apologise for not giving credit where it is due:

The Abundant Life begins when we give up all hope of ever having a better past

I am having some struggle with staying in the moment these days. I have quite a lot of big changes coming and I am sure that the uncertainty is enticing me to bring out The Controller and also to look back and think that if things had been different, these changes wouldn’t be necessary.

What insanity it is to look back and wish it was different? And even more so to try to control the future and others.

Imagine I could give up these very unhelpful behaviours, I would be free from the pain they cause, and abundance would be my prize. So the first step is to recognise all the things that I am trying to have power over, but in fact I have none. The second step is where I come to see that a Power greater than myself can free me from these behaviours. This Power can be as simple as Awareness.

The third step is very like imagining, but it is more directional and more specific. I have to decide to hand these behaviours over to that Power and to know that in this way they can be resolved. I came a little unstuck before, when I handed things over and within a few days/weeks/months, I would find that these behaviours were back in my brain, bouncing off the walls. The third step makes no statement about how many times we must hand over. In my experience, the more entrenched the behaviour is, the more often I need to hand it over.

After two years in recovery and 6 months ‘sabbatical’, it turns out that I need to return to step 1, 2 & 3.

That’s the way recovery goes….

 

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Recovery for Non Believers

When I first came into recovery, I was definitely not a believer. I had worked through my supply of hope and was ready to give up the fight, that was my life. I felt abandoned by the world, my family, God. I vehemently believed that if there was a God (as per the stories that were regularly shoved down my throat), then God was a He and wasn’t around for me, because I was flawed.

When I stopped crying in fellowship meetings long enough to hear the words that were being spoken, I was disappointed to hear talk of Higher Powers because I thought that if I didn’t have a God, I also couldn’t have recovery.

The talks went on and I came to understand that although I had suffered great pain and abandonment as a child, the one inflicting the most pain & abandonment on my grown up, was me. I came to see that I didn’t take good care of myself, I allowed others to treat me badly and I joined in (or led) the devaluing of my work, opinion, time, body, mind, etc. I did all of this because that’s what I learnt to do as a child growing up in a home wrecked by alcoholism & dysfunction. As a grown up I had to take responsibility to parent myself in healthy ways of behaviour & belief.

I began working the steps and while it was really simple to see that my life was unmanageable and that I was powerless to change it, I hit a brick wall at step 2. I didn’t believe that a power greater than myself a) existed or b) cared about me enough, to restore me to sanity. If that was possible, why was I in the situation I was in? If I had not wanted change or something better so desperately, I would have abandoned recovery and carried on my miserable way.

I needed help so badly, that I kept coming back. Anyway, it felt good to be with people that understood what I was feeling. Through listening at fellowship meetings and reading the writings of others in recovery, I realised that I didn’t have to believe that a Higher Power could restore me to sanity, I just had to be willing to believe. I also realised that I didn’t need to know how I could be restored to sanity, just that I could be. It took a few months but eventually I got to a place where I believed that being restored to sanity was possible.

Here I came upon another barrier, I had to turn my life and will over to a God that I really didn’t understand. Some say that the understanding is part of step 3, but I say, even without understanding, we can still progress in recovery. I got a beautiful box out of the cupboard and started writing notes to my ‘higher power’. I asked for strength and clarity and help (with the mosquitos that were keeping me out of sleep that I desperately needed). Slowly, the things that I asked for were being delivered to me. I started getting more sleep at night, I was feeling stronger and started seeing more clearly how to recover.

About a year after I took step 3 for the first time, I revisited the step (read it here) to work out again what I understood about my Higher Power. I also worked out what I could physically do to strengthen my connection to HP Source and the way I do that is by keeping a gratitude journal, leaving notes in my God-box and being out in nature. Through being connected I am developing my belief that I am good enough to love, to save and to be happy.

I am really glad that I didn’t abandon recovery because I didn’t believe in God. My connection with my Higher Power is one of the most precious things in my bag of tricks. I keep revisiting the steps and every time my connection & belief grows stronger.

 

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Daily Gratitude – Inspiration

I am so grateful for inspiration. Inspiration comes from being connected to my Higher Power, which comes from practicing gratitude (among other things). It feels like excitement, but comes from down deep and it moves me to act. It feels as delicate as a bubble and as worthy as a gem.

After I started my new series of Daily Gratitude yesterday, I immediately started getting some inspired ideas about how I could change my life for the better. Because there is so much energy in the ideas, the thought of acting on them, brings possibility & hope that overrides my feelings of fear and not-good-enough-ness.

Some ideas are so full of inspiration that they shine like genius. I am so grateful that my HP Source offers inspiration for me to ride on.

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Surrender

Seemingly, there is magic in numbers and dates. On 11/11/11, I drew one of my AngelⓇ Cards and Surrender was inscribed on it. On the same day, Melody Beattie wrote a post titled Surrender. I completely ignored both nudges from my HP Source until days later when I suddenly saw clearly… when I’m clinging too tightly to my own way, I’m caught up in ego and Surrender is required.

When it’s too hard for me to back down, to admit that I might not have all the answers, to consider that there may be another way, then I know that I am heading toward unmanageability in my life. If it’s too hard to loose face at work/home/with friends, maybe I can turn to my Higher Power and surrender my willfulness and desperate clutching. Our 3rd steps say: Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of the God of our Understanding.

The dictionary puts it like this: to give oneself up, as into the power of another; submit or yield and the Thesaurus gave one example as White Flag. I really like the image that this provides and device for a physical gesture that I can make when I’m aware that its time to surrender.

It is so comforting to know that once I have becoming willing, I can then turn to my Higher Power to surrender the weight I have dragging around behind me. The thought feels like sunshine on my skin.

Image Copyright (c) 123RF Stock Photos

Why Do I Forget?

This morning, when I opened my RSS reader, I had 30 unread entries from 8 different feeds. It was going to take me all day to read that much stuff. So I began immediately.

The post that got my attention above all the others was this one:

Prayer changes things. It changes me.

via TALKING ABOUT …. | Melody Beattie.

I know this to be true, so I wonder why I so easily forget to talk to my higher power. Last night I fell asleep whispering to ‘HP Source’, asking for help, pleading actually, listing all the reasons why I deserved to be helped. How hard I tried, how good I was….. I handed over a very important phone call that I needed to happen.

This morning, I completely forgot that I had gone to sleep last night, sharing my pillow with ‘HP Source’, and I stepped instantly into worry and anguish over that phone call. If I had given God a chance, I would have come to see that my prayer had been answered by 9am.

My hope for the future is that I learn to start the day with prayer, as well as ending it that way. I know that a healthy, intimate relationship with my higher power, will keep me on the path of straight, narrow & level.

Stories I Tell Myself

I did it today, I told myself a story. I think that I do it everyday, but often I don’t notice.

I tell wealth limiting stories – they perfectly match my reality. I tell myself stories of rejection, abandonment & loathing. I tell myself stories of misery, poverty & calamity. I tell stories about living under a bridge, of being alone and having nothing. I tell stories that end, as they would, if I was worthless and had nothing to offer the world. Continue reading

Easier Said Than Done?

I had nothing on my mind today (except the changes to Facebook), until I came apon the Daily Love‘s post for today. I’ve reblogged it here, because I think that the message is a really good one. It says to Love yourself.

I agree wholeheartedly, that is why I am in the program, to learn to Love myself & others. Where I get stuck is on the how to Love myself. Well the answer came in a brilliant post by Chris Brogan:

YOU ARE YOUR OWN SUPERHERO

We’ve already agreed that you know what to do. We realize that part of what we have to do involves getting stronger with our choices. We know that letting the emotions and thoughts of others affect how we see ourselves is a problem and that we have to get untangled. We’ve thought about how important discipline is to our world. We know that we have to say no faster. So what’s left?

The work.

You are your own superhero. No one has to save you. You don’t have to say “if only.” You just have to do the work. Do you need to make more money? Then start working on that. Do you need to lose weight or get healthy? Today’s the day.

Superheroes are part of a very powerful mythology that says this: you’re not strong enough, so some outside force will have to come and help you.

That is, unless YOU are the superhero. Right? Mmmmmm. Isn’t that neat?

via Chris Brogan‘s You Are Your Own Superhero

Saving myself is the best way that I can think of to show myself Love. The blog goes on to describe how to take on Superhero qualities, and they are all great ways for me to take care of myself. Taking care of myself also brings me closer to my Higher Power which gives me strength.  I know that as I move from being the victim to being the hero, great things start to happen and hopefulness fills my world.