Tuesday, January 29, 2013
You can't let adversity get you down. Keep smiling. --Violet Hensley
Violet's smiles certainly fit this category. She lights up rooms with her joy and energy, her fiddle playing and storytelling. We don't all smile quite so easily. Why is that? Some naively assume one's easy; individual circumstances determine the willingness to smile. A few hours with a soul like Violet convinces us otherwise. The work we've done, the environment we inhabit, the struggles we've had or have been free of do not determine our happiness, thus the frequency of our smiles. That's good fortune, in fact.
Smiling is first an attitude and then an action. We don't have to be bubbling over with inner happiness to smile. On the contrary, if something is bothering us, we may discover it will not loom so large if we focus our energy on smiling at a friend or even a stranger. Some would label it miraculous how changed a problem seems when we decide to put our energy into smiling at the passersby in our lives.
The separation we feel from others is what often gives rise to our problems, regardless of their details. Giving a smile and getting one in return diminishes our sense of separation. Problems diminish, too.
How do I feel today? Even a few smiles will lift my spirits.
From the book Keepers of the Wisdom by Karen Casey
For most of us, addiction was full of doubt. We stopped believing in ourselves. Our thoughts had turned to "stinking thinking." We didn't believe in much of anything. We didn't take risk. We always looked for the easier, softer way. In recovery, we start to believe again. We believe in the program. We believe in a Higher Power. We believe in people. And, over time, we believe in ourselves again. We become better at taking risk. We are able to stay sober because we believe,
because we take risk. As we stay sober, we can face almost anything---with the help of others.
My willfulness is still very much a part of me
and may always be a stumbling block to progress in my life.
So I will have to stay very close to AA, where my strength lies.
I am so full of human frailty that I think it is a miracle that I am here today at all.
It's only through AA.
- The Best of the Grapevine [Vol. 2], pp. 147-148
Thought to Ponder . . .
My life hereafter is from this moment on.
AA-related 'Alconym' . . .
A A = Always Alive.
You are there
You can’t complain your way to happiness. The more you try to do so, the more miserable you make yourself.
Yet the minute you stop looking backward and begin to look forward, your whole world can change. For no matter what may have happened to you or around you in the past, this moment is yours to create.
Things will not always go the way you want them to go. Yet that does not have to stop you from leading a rich and fulfilling life.
People will be rude and inconsiderate. Yet that does not have to stop you from finding something to value and appreciate about those people.
You have the amazing ability to find the good in a world that can often be disappointing and sometimes even frightening. You can focus on what works, on what has real value, and your very focus will strengthen those good things.
Though you cannot force anyone to make you happy, you can enjoy happiness and fulfillment at any time and in any place. Just put your thoughts where you want to truly be, and you are there.
— Ralph Marston