Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Daily Motivation 4-23-2014

Wednesday, April 23, 2014
Today's Gift

Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear not absence of fear. —Mark Twain

It is not unusual to feel afraid. It is unusual, however, to hear anyone admit to feeling afraid. Sometimes we think there are some people who are so cool and calm that they never feel afraid. This may make us think we're not as good because we know how often we feel afraid. This is why it is important to think about what courage really is. It is not the absence of fear. Courage is not letting fear stop us from doing what we need to do.

We might have to get up in front of a group to give a speech. We could give in to our fear and not give the speech, or we could admit our fear to those who love us, and then go ahead and do the best we can. To go ahead in the face of fear is courage.

What am I afraid of?

From Today's Gift: Daily Meditations for Families ©


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Twenty-Four Hours a Day

Keep It Simple

He has not learned the lesson of life who does not every day surmount a fear. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson ~

In his book Stairway to Success, Nido R. Qubein reports that a naval aviator once told him that many pilots die because they choose to stay with a disabled aircraft. He writes, “They preferred the familiarity of the cockpit to the unfamiliarity of the parachute, even though the cockpit was a deathtrap.”

Whenever you choose to remain with what is familiar, what you have previously tried, or what you already know does not work, you will continue to experience the same outcomes. After all, when you keep doing the things that have never worked with the expectation that things will turn out differently, you are setting yourself up for certain defeat.

Like the pilots, you may feel much safer staying in a familiar environment than by taking the leap and venturing out into the unfamiliar. But if you have not tried something before, how do you know it will fail? It is only when you leave what is familiar and try something you have never tried before that you have the greatest possibility for success. There will be times in your recovery when you simply must face your fears and take the leap.

Action for the Day: Today I can feel fearful before I try something new, but I will try it anyway.

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One Day At A Time

Step Four
"Made a searching and fearless inventory of ourselves."
Step Four is our vigorous and painstaking effort to discover
what these liabilities in each of us have been, and are. . .
Without a willing and persistent effort to do this,
there can be little sobriety or contentment for us.
- Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, pp. 42-43

Thought to Ponder . . .
I am responsible for the effort -- not the outcome.

AA-related 'Alconym' . . .
W H O = W
illingness, Honesty, Open-mindedness.

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Daily Motivation

Positive alternatives

The more you focus on any possibility, the more power and substance you give to it. It is by giving your persistent attention and energy to the possibilities that you make them real.

The same dynamic works for both the desirable and the undesirable possibilities. Whether you strongly fear or strongly desire, the power of your unrelenting attention will work to create whatever you focus upon.

Choose, then, to make your focus a positive one. Instead of living in fear of the bad stuff, live with a persistent desire and appreciation for the good stuff.

Be sincerely thankful for the goodness you already have, and your gratitude will create even more. Imagine in detail how your world can be a better place, and your time and energy will go toward making it so.

Not only does fear itself bring you down, it also enables you to bring yourself down. Avoid all that not by avoiding your fears, but by turning your attention to their positive alternatives.

Your attention has great power. Remember always to focus that power in a desirable direction.

— Ralph Marston

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Daily Motivation 4-22-2014

Tuesday, April 22, 2014
Today's Gift

Each day is different and has a surprise in it, like a Cracker Jack box. --Alpha English

It's interesting to ponder the notion of surprise. Not every one of them is all that welcome. Hearing bad news about a friend or having a special trip we'd been counting on canceled can leave us dismayed and worried, right along with surprised. Seeking solace from others while cultivating a willingness to accept that all things happen for a reason gives us the armor we need to make the best of every situation and disappointment.

It's an interesting image to think of each day as a box of Cracker Jacks. The moments of our lives have been very tasty. Some were sweet, some were a bit salty, and there were always wholly unexpected moments, the surprises that we were ready for even though we may not have imagined as much. We can look forward to the same daily agenda throughout the remaining years.

Does it help to know that there is a divine plan unfolding in our lives? Many of us find comfort in that. All of us can cultivate that belief.

I am ready for my surprise today! It is meant for me at this time.

From the book Keepers of the Wisdom by Karen Casey


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Twenty-Four Hours a Day

Keep It Simple

The first springs of great events, like those of great rivers, are often mean and little. ~ Jonathan Swift ~

Our lives are like streams which flow through time. Looking at the flow of our whole lives, we see the interconnections of many days that seemed minor. Each day contributes to the stream of goals and faith and relationships. As we look at the flow of a whole river, we see at its beginning a little trickle of water here, joining another trickle there, slowly gathering together a stream that develops force and direction.

We may look for intensity in our lives and ignore the quiet. Much of our lives may have been lived on a roller coaster of major crises. As terrible as it seemed, it was not dull. Today may seem rather boring. But in later in life we learn to appreciate the more subtle trickle that a good day can be. Simply continuing with the flow—of our new life, of faithfulness to our values, of being emotionally present in our relationships—adds up to a rich life.

Action for the Day: May I see the continuity of my life in the simple moments of this day.

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One Day At A Time

A New Beginning
I knew I had to have a new beginning, and this beginning had to be here.
I had to let go of the past and forget the future.
As long as I held on to the past with one hand and grabbed at the future with the other hand
I had nothing to hold on to today with. So I had to begin here, now.
- Came To Believe . . ., p. 46

Thought to Ponder . . .
My life hereafter is from this moment on.

AA-related 'Alconym' . . .
S I T = S
tay In Today.


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Daily Motivation

Peacefully engaged

Peace is not arrived at by merely doing nothing. On the contrary, peace is attained by doing substantive and significant things, and doing them without conflict.

That means living with purpose, with love, compassion, forgiveness and genuine tolerance. It means putting your very best into the effort while at the same time detaching your sense of self worth from the result.

Your life, your work and your whole world are all filled with conflicting interests. Yet that doesn’t mean you must handle them by fighting.

In fact, diverse and conflicting interests can absolutely be resolved in much more positive ways, and it happens every day. That is one of life’s great challenges, and working through the challenge produces great value.

Seek not merely to do significant things. Seek to achieve what you achieve with a peaceful heart, for that is true and sustainable achievement.

Be fully engaged in life while also being completely at peace with who you are. It is indeed a powerful and fulfilling combination.

— Ralph Marston



Monday, April 21, 2014

Daily Motivation 4-21-2014

Monday, April 21, 2014
Today's Gift

In grief, healing helps us make peace with the meaning of death, which cannot be understood except as an unknown part of life. —Alla Bozarth-Campbell

It is a sad occasion when we must say goodbye to a loved one or pet who has died. But grief is the only way we can come to understand our losses, and sharing grief helps us experience it more fully.

Perhaps we wish to grieve for something else we've lost, like fading youth, a job, a possession, or a habit we had come to enjoy. It's natural to feel grief over things like this, too.

We can share stories and good memories with other grievers, and give free reign to our tears. Sometimes it seems the more we talk, the sadder we feel about our losses, but when we share these feelings with others, we turn our losses into gain. We heal ourselves, pay tribute to those we grieve for, and share an intimate sense of loss with someone else.

Do I have grief to share?

From Today's Gift: Daily Meditations for Families ©


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Twenty-Four Hours a Day

Keep It Simple

To look backward for a while is to refresh the eye, to restore it, and to render it the more fit for its prime function of looking forward. ~ Margaret Fairless Barber ~

When we contemplate last month, last year, the period of time just before we came into this Twelve Step program, we can see many changes, good changes, have come our way. But we take the changes for granted sometimes. Or maybe we fail to reflect on them at all. We get caught up in the turmoil of the present, believing it will last forever, forgetting that yesterday’s turmoil taught us much that we needed to know.

The past, for most of us, was rife with pain. But now we have hope. We have gained on life. We may be back in the good graces of our family. Perhaps we have patched up some failed relationships. A career has beckoned to us. Good experiences have come to pass. But we aren’t free of difficulties. They need not get us down again. Hindsight assures us that this, too, will pass. It also guarantees that we will move forward, just as we have again and again, if only we have faith.

Today’s Action: I will take this moment to look back at last year or the last binge. I can rest assured that I am moving forward. I will continue to do so.

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One Day At A Time

Help Others
Showing others who suffer how we were given help
is the very thing which makes life seem so worthwhile to us now.
Cling to the thought that, in our Higher Power's hands, the dark past is the greatest possession you have -- the key to life and happiness for others.
With it you can avert death and misery for them.
- Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 124

Thought to Ponder . . .
Only in giving do we receive in full measure.

AA-related 'Alconym' . . .
H E L P =
Hope, Encouragement, Love, Patience.
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Daily Motivation

There is so much to value

Getting uptight won’t get anything done. Relax, enjoy the moment, and you’ll get more positive value out of it.

The work may be difficult, complicated and challenging, but that doesn’t mean you must fight against it. Be genuinely thankful for the opportunity to make a difference, and the difference you make will be a beautiful one.

Being resentful about what you must do will only make it more burdensome. You can choose instead to be enthusiastic, and you’ll immediately feel a great weight lifted off your shoulders.

There is so much to value, appreciate and enjoy about life. It really makes no sense to fight against it.

Take a deep, relaxing breath and remind yourself how good you have it. Choose to use your considerable energy to live your best possibilities.

Embrace your precious, unique and wonderful life. And live it with the peaceful, positive power that is always yours to choose.

— Ralph Marston




Friday, April 18, 2014

Daily Motivation 4-18-2014

Friday, April 18, 2014
Today's Gift

Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery, none but ourselves can free our minds! --Bob Marley

Many of us were oppressed and victimized as children. As adults, we may continue to keep ourselves oppressed.

Some of us don't recognize that caretaking and not setting boundaries will leave us feeling victimized.

Some of us don't understand that thinking of ourselves as victims will leave us feeling oppressed.

Some of us don't know that we hold the key to our own freedom. That key is honoring ourselves, and taking care of ourselves.

We can say what we mean, and mean what we say.

We can stop waiting for others to give us what we need and take responsibility for ourselves. When we do, the gates to freedom will swing wide.

Walk through.

Today, I will understand that I hold the key to my freedom. I will stop participating in my oppression and victimization. I will take responsibility for myself, and let others do as they may.
From The Language of Letting Go by Melody Beattie ©


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Twenty-Four Hours a Day

Keep It Simple

Patience is needed with everyone, but first of all with ourselves. ~ St. Francis de Sales ~

How do you treat yourself? Do you talk to yourself with a kind and loving voice? We can’t be kind and loving to others until we learn to be kind and loving with ourselves. To live this way, we must give ourselves the gift of patience.

Let’s practice patience with ourselves daily. Practice talking to yourself in a kind, loving voice. Over time, this will become your everyday voice. Your voice will be that of a loving parent who helps a child with a new task. Your Higher Power is willing to be patient with you. Give yourself the same gift.

Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, I pray that I’ll treat myself and others with the same loving patience You’ve shown me.

Action for the Day: I will listen to how I talk to myself. I will practice talking to myself with a kind, loving, and patient voice.

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One Day At A Time

Inventory
We want to find exactly how, when, and where our natural desires have warped us.
We wish to look squarely at the unhappiness this has caused others and ourselves.
By discovering what our emotional deformities are, we can move toward their correction.
Without a willing and persistent effort to do this, there can be little sobriety or contentment for us.
- Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, p. 43

Thought to Ponder . . .
Trust God. Clean house. Help others.

AA-related 'Alconym' . . .
A B C =
Accept, Begin, Continue.

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Daily Motivation

The richness of now

Right now is an exceptional moment. Be here with all you are, and experience its richness.

Feel the energy that is already available to you. See the value that is already in front of you, right now.

Let go of any thoughts of limitation or conflict. Let yourself see the unique beauty that is here and now.

Instead of obsessing over how things should be, tap into the great value of how things are. Instead of longing for the past or wishing for the future, live with joy, satisfaction and gratitude in the present.

Right now, let yourself be genuinely happy, and you will be. Right now, let yourself be more fully alive than ever.

Reach out and touch the exquisite world that is yours to experience right here, at this very moment. Feel the joy, feel the substance, and feel the love as you fully live the richness of now.

— Ralph Marston

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Daily Motivation 4-17-2014

Thursday, April 17, 2014
Today's Gift

The purpose of learning is growth, and our minds, unlike our bodies, can continue growing as we continue to live. --Mortimer Adler

In some areas of our lives we are right on target. Our level of maturity is exactly as it should be, and we are going through the stages that people of our age ought to be going through. In other areas, this is not so. We are complex people, irregular, uneven. In all of us there are areas fixated in some emotional ice age, areas that have not felt the freeing warmth of the sun.

We cannot expect ourselves to move forward all at once. Not only is it okay to move slowly — it's often the only way it can be. Confusion, conflict, or pain may have caused us to let our memories or feelings be frozen safely away. This has been a long process, and we can allow ourselves more time to heal. The task now is not to deny or hide from these changes, but to have confidence that the healing warmth of the our Higher Power will reflect on all areas of our lives and help make us whole.

I am thankful I am given both time and patience in which to continue my growth.

From the book Days of Healing, Days of Joy by Earnie Larsen and Carol Larsen Hegarty


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Twenty-Four Hours a Day

Keep It Simple

Possibilities and miracles are one and the same. ~ Anonymous ~

Many of us have seen happiness as a goal we couldn’t find. When we were children, we were taught that “life is a hard row to hoe.” We carried that over into our adult lives.

Seize the day! We let too many of our days just slide by. None of those hours can be replaced. Why worry over past failures if there is a victory to win? Why keep thinking about our faults when we could be practicing virtues instead?

Seize the day! Hold each moment tight and look at each one with wide-open eyes and mind. They are our lives, special to each of us. The moments pass swiftly into memory. Let those memories be good ones, filled with joys large and small.

Action for the Day: Yesterday’s unhappiness can’t be changed, but today’s happiness is my own responsibility.

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One Day At A Time

Fear
For all its usual destructiveness, we have found that fear can be the starting point for better things.
Fear can be a stepping-stone to prudence and to a decent respect for others.
It can point the path to justice, as well as to hate.
And the more we have of respect and justice, the more we shall begin to find the love
which can suffer much, and yet be freely given. So fear need not always be destructive,
because the lessons of its consequences can lead us to positive values.
- The Language of the Heart, April 2014

Thought to Ponder . . .
Breathe in faith, breathe out fear.

AA-related 'Alconym' . . .
O D A A T
= One Day At A Time.

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Daily Motivation

Transform weakness into strength

Weakness is nothing to be ashamed of. It is something to be worked on.

It’s good to improve on your strengths. It’s even better, though, to make improvements in the areas that are your weaknesses.

When you improve on your strengths, you get good incremental gains. Yet when you can transform a weakness into a strength, you get major, life-changing gains.

Be willing to admit what you don’t know, what you are not experienced at doing, and what you don’t understand. Then get busy learning, developing your skills, and increasing your understanding.

Instead of using your weaknesses as excuses, use them as pathways for improvement. Instead of resigning yourself to whatever’s holding you back, challenge yourself to find a way around it.

Be honest and realistic with yourself about where you are coming up short. Then do the work, transform that weakness into strength, and move forward faster than ever before.

— Ralph Marston





Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Daily Motivation 4-16-2014

Wednesday, April 16, 2014
Today's Gift

No one can make you feel inferior without your consent. --Eleanor Roosevelt

In this moment, we are the best we can be. Today, we can work at loving the best in ourselves and not fearing the worst. We are truly wonderful and growing people with gifts and qualities that make us who we are. No one can make us feel inferior without our consent.

Now, we are in charge of our lives and growth. We can choose to let go of old negative thinking. We can choose to think positive, loving thoughts about ourselves. We never need to be victims again to dysfunction or to other people. We have options today. We can choose to grow in a positive way. We can choose to have loving, affirming people in our lives.

Today I will stick with the winners. I am a winner today and every day.

From the book Our Best Days by Nancy Hull-Mast


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Twenty-Four Hours a Day

Keep It Simple

I have wept in the night
For the shortness of sight
That to somebody’s need made me blind;
But I have never yet
Felt a tinge of regret
For being a little too kind.
~ Anonymous ~


We have only to turn on the evening news to be deluged by all the unkindnesses in the world. Natural disasters destroy and kill. People murder. Governments oppress and torture. People discriminate against others. But if we turn off the evening news and take a look at our own lives – at our relationships – we can see that unkindness is just as prevalent.

Kindness is like a beautiful flowering plant. Pay attention to it, water it, nourish it, tend to its needs, and it will flourish. One flower will open, then another, with a reward of brilliant colors. Show it no kindness, and it will close up its beauty and die.

Action for the Day: There are flowers all around me. I need to cultivate my garden with kindness.

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One Day At A Time

Pride
Some see pride as just a minor issue. I see pride, and resistance to change,
as the deadliest character flaw every alcoholic deals with on a daily basis.
The only answer I've ever found in dealing with such a high level of denial,
is written about in the Big Book,
and can be found in action at just about any AA meeting in the world.
The AA Grapevine, April 2014

Thought to Ponder . . .
Into action, out of self.

AA-related 'Alconym' . . .
P R I D E = P
ersonal Recovery Involves Deflating Ego.

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Daily Motivation

What you do next

Don’t define yourself by your past. Define yourself by your possibilities.

The version of you that now matters is the version of you going forward. See your life in those terms, from that perspective.

The only thing that can really hold you back is your reluctance to fulfill your best possibilities. Though progress is rarely easy, it is always possible.

You cannot just walk away from the obligations you’ve incurred in the past. However, you absolutely can choose to honor those obligations by going above and beyond them.

No matter what the past has been, today is an opportunity. You are alive, capable, motivated and in a position to make a positive difference in some way.

Look forward, see that opportunity, and dive into the fulfillment of it. What really matters now is what you do next, so make it something great.

— Ralph Marston


Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Daily Motivation 4-15-2014

Tuesday, April 15, 2014
Today's Gift

Just be what you are and speak from your guts and heart - it's all a person has. —Hubert Humphrey

Some of us have doubted our inner voice so completely that we abandoned it totally. Many of us have discovered it the hard way, that by our denial we had violated our inner voice with lies, even to ourselves. Now we question whether we can trust our instincts, and we may not know what we feel.

Spiritual recovery is a return to our guts and our heart. Standing up and speaking from our hearts may be difficult at times, but our self-respect rises as we do. That is where we go for our final decision-making. We develop better reception for the inner voice as we live are truth. We accept that we are never absolutely right. We continue with humility, knowing we may be wrong and listening to others and our Higher Power. Yet we must live with our choices.

I will seek the courage to be faithful to my own instincts.

From Touchstones: A Book of Daily Meditations for Men ©


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Twenty-Four Hours a Day

Keep It Simple

Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom. ~ Thomas Jefferson ~

We see our true selves when we don’t resculpt our bodies, change the style of our hair, or try to imagine someone else instead of us. If we see ourselves as we honestly are, then we will see the imperfections that make us who we are: perhaps too much weight or not enough, a not-so-clear complexion, or being too short or tall. We will never look the way we really want because our desires are usually impossible to attain. We can certainly make some changes, but we need to learn to see an honest picture of ourselves.

The first step to get to know who we are is to know what we look like. We can start by taking off our clothes and standing naked in front of a mirror. That’s us, no matter how much we may want to look away or cry or laugh out loud. We may wish that wasn't what we looked like, but that’s because we've learned to look at others rather than ourselves. We can take the first step toward wisdom and maturity by seeing our honest reflection, and accepting it.


Action for the Day: I will gather up courage to really look at my reflection. I will accept the good as well as the bad.

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One Day At A Time

Understanding
Gradually, however, my Higher Power began to clear my channels
so that real understanding began to come.
Then was the time when full realization and acknowledgement came to me.
It was realization and acknowledgement of the fact that I was full of self-pity
and resentment, realization that I had not fully given my problems to 
my Higher Power.
I was still trying to do my own fixing.
- Experience, Strength and Hope, p. 22

Thought to Ponder . . .
Get it - Give it - Grow in it.

AA-related 'Alconym' . . .
A A = A
chieve Anything.


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Daily Motivation

This is going to be

This is going to be a beautiful day. The way you can know that is because you will make it so.

This is going to be a productive day. You can live its moments with your awareness focused on bringing new value to life.

This is going to be a unique, memorable day. You have the opportunity right now to make the memories great ones.

This is going to be a joyful day. Wherever you are, whatever you’re doing, whomever you’re with, you can add your own joy to the mix.

This is going to be a meaningful day. For you can use its many moments and possibilities in the service of what truly matters.

The way this day turns out depends on what you choose to do with it. And what you can choose, right now, is to make it the best one yet.

— Ralph Marston




Monday, April 14, 2014

Daily Motivation 4-14-2014

Monday, April 14, 2014
Today's Gift

The fastest way to break the cycle of perfectionism and become a fearless person is to give up the idea of doing it perfectly - indeed to embrace uncertainty and imperfection. ~Arianna Huffington

Life is an individual process that necessitates making mistakes, struggling through problems, and facing tough issues.

Expecting ourselves to be perfect slows this process; it puts us in a guilty and anxious state. Expecting others to be perfect is equally destructive; it makes others feel ashamed and may interfere with their growth.

People are human and vulnerable, and that is wonderful. We can accept and cherish that idea. Expecting others to be perfect puts us in a codependent state of moral superiority. Expecting ourselves to be perfect makes us feel rigid and inferior.

We can let go of both ideas.

We do not need to go to the other extreme; tolerating anything people throw our way. We can still expect appropriate, responsible behavior from ourselves. But most of us can afford to loosen up a bit. And when we stop expecting others to be perfect, we may discover that they're doing much better than we thought. When we stop expecting ourselves to be perfect, we'll discover the beauty in ourselves.

Today, I will practice tolerance, acceptance, and love of others as they are, and myself as I am. I will strive for that balance between expecting too much and expecting too little from others and myself.

From The Language of Letting Go by Melody Beattie ©


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Twenty-Four Hours a Day

Keep It Simple

A person who is looking for something doesn't travel very fast. ~ E. B. White ~

What do men really want? What are we seeking? Many of us have felt driven and still feel restless or compulsive at times. We frantically followed our impulses to self-destructive extremes. Even those painful actions of our past were motivated, at the bottom line, by a spiritual search. What did we really seek in the bottle, or in the passionate bed, or in our work? Slowing down enough every day to let ourselves know what we are looking for gives us a much better chance of finding it.

Today we can slow down by taking twenty minutes for solitude and quiet, for meditation or prayer. We can call a friend simply for a moment of contact. We might read something to give ourselves some ideas to ponder, or we can listen to music which will transport us to another world. Perhaps we can simply walk more slowly from our cars or the bus stop to our homes. Often it is not the events in our lives that bring change but the space between events.

Today’s Action: Today, I will try to remember that slowing down may help me find what I am seeking.

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One Day At A Time

Acceptance
And acceptance is the answer to all my problems today. . .
Until I could accept my dysfunctions, I could not get past them;
unless I accept life completely on life's terms, I cannot be happy.
- Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 417

Thought to Ponder . . .
My serenity is directly proportional to my level of acceptance.

AA-related 'Alconym' . . .
A B C =
Acceptance, Belief, Change.

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Daily Motivation

The power to choose

The pains, disappointments and frustrations tug at you. And yet, you are infinitely more powerful than all of them put together.

With your very next thought, you can rise above any kind of negativity. With your next action, you can begin to put real distance between yourself and whatever was bringing you down.

You have the power to choose the way you see life, and the way you experience life. You can take whatever comes, and make something positive out of it.

The more you make a conscious, intentional choice about how to live, the stronger you become at doing so. Over time, as you continue to exercise your power to choose, you add real richness and fulfillment to your life.

Look at this day, with all its problems and challenges, and see the positive possibilities. Look inside yourself, and find the dreams, goals and desires that have the strength to push you forward.

Choose to live a life of unique greatness, and to give that greatness to your world. In every moment you have the power to choose, so choose the very best.

— Ralph Marston



Friday, April 11, 2014

Daily Motivation 4-11-2014

Friday, April 11, 2014
Today's Gift

I have learned this: it is not what one does that is wrong, but what one becomes as a consequence of it. —Oscar Wilde

There are countless ways to take shortcuts in life or to grab for pleasures. We could cheat on our income taxes, excuse a food binge, or lie to a loved one about where we've been. We say, "It won't hurt anyone!" "I wouldn't do it if it weren't for the other guy." Or, "Everyone does it." But if we are to like and respect ourselves, we need to live by the rules we believe in. Whether we get caught or not isn't the point. We cannot hold values and then repeatedly justify breaking them.

What does it do to us if we constantly fudge on our values? It undermines our self-esteem and damages the faith we have in ourselves. We do not expect to be perfect, but we must be accountable. If we are honest with ourselves, we admit our wrongs and reestablish our self-respect.

Today, I will take care to make choices that match my values.

From Touchstones: A Book of Daily Meditations for Men ©


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Twenty-Four Hours a Day

Keep It Simple

Self-control is one of the greatest skills I've learned. --Jim Burns

Most of us assume we have mastered self-control by now. And perhaps we have. A good test is to monitor how we respond to a nagging spouse or a disrespectful postman or vile-mouthed teenager. Do instances such as these make us angry or resentful? If so, we aren't exerting adequate self-control. Letting another's behavior, no matter how petty, disturb our inner peace means we aren't in control of ourselves. But we can be. There is still time to learn how, and most of us have all the time we need.

Why is self-control so valuable? Getting agitated feels good sometimes. We may think it's superior to boredom. But in truth, losing control of our emotions means we are always in the control of someone else. That too often means we are on a rollercoaster of ups and downs that exhaust us. Illness can even result. Another benefit of self-control is that we can lessen the turmoil around us, rather than add to it. The impact of any action or thought or quiet response is never ending. It's quite analogous to the pebble skipped across the pond. We are making subtle contributions to the world around us whether we are conscious of it or not. Let's be more careful of our input.

Action for the Day: I will consider my input in all situations carefully today. What someone else does need not determine my actions.

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One Day At A Time

Turn It Over
Any of us can handle just one day;
all each of us has to try at is our own job, our own family life.
We don't have to try fixing up the whole world or understanding
what no theologian of any faith has ever understood.
We simply stop messing in our Higher Power's business. . .
when we stop messing and worrying, we have turned our will
and our lives over to God (or Good) as we understand (or don't understand) Him.
- Came To Believe . . ., p. 116

Thought to Ponder . . .
Our Higher Power seldom becomes a reality until our Higher Power becomes a necessity.

AA-related 'Alconym' . . .
G O D =
Good Orderly Direction.

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Daily Motivation

Make the effort to make it happen

Don’t just hope to get it done. Take the time and make the effort to make it happen.

The things you get done are the things you make a specific time for in your schedule. If it’s important enough to be an intention, then it’s important enough to get it scheduled.

Don’t relegate your valuable intentions to an open-ended to-do list. Put them on your calendar.

There’s only so much time in each day, so scheduling your intentions will force you to prioritize them. That will help you make sure the most important things actually get done.

Thoughts and intentions are important because they can define your direction. For your direction to actually matter, though, you must get yourself in motion.

Go beyond wishing, hoping, planning and talking. Take the time, take the action, and get it done.

— Ralph Marston



Thursday, April 10, 2014

Daily Motivation 4-10-2014

Thursday, April 10, 2014
Today's Gift

Celebrate your life and hear your spirit sing. -- Elisabeth L.

"What's to celebrate?" some people ask. We all get our fill of the cynics. Their negativity can weigh down our spirits. But we don't have to let them control how we see our lives or theirs. To keep our own perceptions positive, it helps to detach from the naysayers. We will improve our chances if we consciously focus on gratitude for even the tiny blessings rather than on whatever might be wrong.

Becoming grateful is the strongest, safest means of feeling good. Not only does it readily alter our mood, but it changes our perspective on every detail of our lives. To be thankful rather than "thankless" is a small price to pay for unqualified happiness coupled with serenity.

We've all known people who radiate a singing spirit. They love life, themselves, and others. We seek out their company. We can be like those people for the travelers sharing our journey. Let's do it!

I will practice gratitude today and be a blessing in everyone's life.

From the book A Woman's Spirit by Karen Casey


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Twenty-Four Hours a Day

WALK IN DRY PLACES

DESERVING HAPPINESS

Emotional Control
Somewhere in the course of living, we should realize that we can deserve to be happy. If happiness is eluding us, the fault may lie in a peculiar guilt from our past. In a perverse way, we may be using unhappiness as penance for our past wrongs.

We deserve to be happy if we are doing the things that should bring happiness to ourselves and others. Thinking and living rightly is a path to happiness. Meeting our obligations to society and others contributes to personal happiness.

Happiness is always in the direction of love and service, never in anything selfish. We deserve to be happy, but we must plant seeds of happiness by our thoughts and actions.

Action for the Day: I’ll be happy today. If I’m worrying about something, I’ll suspend the worry and let myself be happy in spite of it. I deserve to be happy and I am usually the person who is responsible for this happiness.

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One Day At A Time

Emotional Sobriety
How to translate a right mental conviction into a right emotional result,
and so into easy, happy, and good living --
well, that's not only the neurotic's problem, it's the problem of life itself for all of us
who have got to the point of real willingness to hew to right principles in all our affairs.
Even then, as we hew away, peace and joy may still elude us.
That's the place so many of us AA oldsters have come to. And it's a hell of a spot.
- The Language of the Heart, p. 237

Thought to Ponder . . .
Spiritual and emotional growth does not depend so much upon success
as it does upon failures and setbacks.

AA-related 'Alconym' . . .
H O P E =
Hang On! Peace Exists.


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Daily Motivation

Your job

Today is already beautiful and full of promise. Your job is to make it great.

There is already abundance in every direction. Your job is to make something valuable out of it.

Today, you’ve been given so very much. Your job is to give it meaning.

Choose today to make fewer judgments and to make more joy. Choose today to stop second guessing your intuition and to live the richness of your authentic purpose.

You are standing right in the middle of a whole universe that’s filled with great possibilities. Let yourself feel the immensity of that opportunity, then step forward and do something wonderful with it.

Your job today is to add new, meaningful experiences to the story of life. So get going, enjoy the challenges and the magnificent rewards your efforts will bring.

— Ralph Marston