Wednesday, December 21, 2011
You can feel only your own feelings, not another person's.
Having empathy for those we love, and being able to share their joys and sorrows, is part of our nature as warm, caring human beings. Taken to an extreme, however, too much empathy can mean that we lose our boundaries as emotionally separate individuals. When that happens, nobody wins.
We're responsible for our own feelings. If we're too deeply involved in another person's emotional state, we may not be truly aware of our own feelings. If we take on someone else's response to a situation, we lose our own in the process.
In any situation, particularly one that is highly charged with negative emotions, we need to maintain a sense of self. If we allow ourselves to be swept up in the anger, fear, grief, or despair of someone close to us, we become less capable of giving help and support. Emotional maturity is one of the goals of recovery. We progress toward it as we differentiate how we feel from how another person appears to feel.
I can respect the feelings of others without making them my own.
From the book Inner Harvest by Elisabeth L.
Good Orderly Direction
Does guidance from our Higher Power always come through? We must believe that it does, even when we don't seem to receive a visible answer.
Spiritual guidance usually doesn't come as we think it should. What we're likely to find instead is that over time, a number of unrelated events come together for a good purpose. Although this appears to be chance or coincidence, very important outcomes often develop from simple happenings___ maybe just from meeting someone on the street.
We can never really determine how any chain of events will play out. The best we can do is to continue seeking guidance while following the highest principles in our program. Many chance happenings will be recognized as guidance when we look back at an entire chain of events.
Action for the Day: My best way to seek guidance is simply to remember today that my life and affairs are in my Higher Power's care and keeping. The highest good will come from this.
Going the whole route looked too hard -- until someone said to me, "One step at a time." So I looked ahead, along the path marked by the footprints of hope, commitment, and action. All around me were many happy, sober people who had walked that path. Listening intently to their stories, I heard some more horrifying than mine . . . It was plain that all these alcoholics had once felt the same hopelessness, fear, pain, and anger I had experienced. It was also obvious that people with drinking troubles like mine could come out of them and -- unbelievable as it seemed at first -- laugh at them!
Reprinted from The Best of the Grapevine (Vol. 2), Page 136, from the Grapevine. Reprinted with permission of The A.A. Grapevine, Inc.
Take the first step in faith. You don't have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step.
You can do
You can see, you can feel, you can imagine, and you can create. You can wonder, you can love, you can be amazed, and you can understand.
There is so much you can do. There is so much value you can bring to life in your very own, unique way.
When circumstances bring you down, you don’t have to stay down. You can pick yourself up, and move yourself positively forward, again and again.
What you don’t know, you can learn. What you must have, you can find or create.
You can forge meaningful, lasting connections with others, and greatly multiply the richness in life. You can cooperate and collaborate and bring about magnificent achievements.
Life can be challenging and difficult, and will ask much of you. That’s a great opportunity, because there is so much you can do.
— Ralph Marston