December 28 2012 | AA 12 Steps In Action | Step 12 Living Principles Alcoholics Anonymous Today's Daily Reflections: "suit up and show up… Under all conditions? And without conditions?" I used to avoid some situations, arguing with myself about not wanting to hurt another person by my actions, or not confront awkward situations… I realise now that my feelings were hurt by the actions of other people, and my lack of confrontation, was fear of the truth. That my feelings were hurt and not theirs. And any actions I might take when hurt inside me, would inflict hurt on them in order to pay them back in some way. In other words, I probably wanted them to suffer in some way, because I was hurt and I would withdraw… What nonsense that is!
Video For Today:
Better to suit up and show up without conditions and without entitlements and without a sense of power over any sort of situation. If we think we can control how other people behave by our actions or inaction, we are probably playing God in our own minds eye. Trying to punish people for their behaviour, simply undermines our own spiritual progress of getting on with life in the moment of now. If we befriend people without conditions, love unconditionally, we make no demands on the other person to respond in a like-minded way. Befriending people and loving them unconditionally does not mean that they can always be our friend and love us unconditionally. We give unconditionally and we receive unconditionally, but never expect it to be from the same person over and over again. Expecting another person to behave as you do is conditional, you are making them a slave to your love and dependent on you in an unhealthy way…
Suiting up and showing up in fellowship in an open honest and willing way. Learning how to love people and be loved back by people in this imperfectly perfect moment of now… If I asked you the questions, "do you know what love is, do you know how to love another person, do you know how to be loved by another person and do you know that each and every person learns to love, as life teaches them?" Love grows through time, there is no standard form of love, which fits every situation. If you are looking for love and compare it to a romantic novel, a romantic movie, an ideal, you will be looking for eternity and never find it… If you hold people to an ideal even you can't live up to, you are a hostage to your own ill-conceived notions of what love is all about. Love is a state of mind, a way to live and flows with life as life is today…
Attraction not promotion! Suit up and show up! In fellowship, what you see is what you get! In fellowship, we make progress and we are all imperfect! In fellowship, if you are expecting to be fixed, and the world will fall at your feet, you're not working the program, you are expecting the program to work for you and others will revere you for your sobriety, they won't do that, they will judge you as an arse. As you judge them, they have wandered off and happily enjoy being in their own world and not yours, not only just for today, but for every day you keep on judging, and forget the actions required to be included, in unity, service and recovery which are freely given and not with your conditions attached…
When we sit in judgement, we are observing, we are not doing anything other than judge others actions. If we are resenting, we have expectations far greater and entitlements far greater than our capacity to make life the way we want it. If we want the world to work to our own personal rule book, we will feel very lonely most of the time, we will feel very angry most the time, and being lonely and angry will exhaust us most of the time. And if we are angry, lonely and tired, we are hungry for everything and cannot find any sustenance physically, emotionally or spiritually. Always we need live and work together, without expectations and without entitlements in recovery, or there is no sober one day at a time… And what works in fellowship, works in all our worldly doings, providing we live the principles we learn and the experiences we have day by day, by day…
Dear higher power, how you feeling today? I keep learning a lot each day higher power, but the more I know the less I know seems to be true every single day. Is it the same to you? It must be because nothing stands still especially for humans. I keep learning from everyone around me, and it's frustrating, hard work but very rewarding. I must admit it feels good to be human just for a day…
“If it ain't broke, don't fix it.” Feels like a good proposition. But I didn't know what was broken and what needed fixing. And I didn't know what parts of me, emotionally and spiritually were never there. Today I learn my emotions as I go along, what was missing and what did not work. Feelings in the moment inform me, shape my thinking and my actions today. No more fixing, simply living and learning today…
“What does not kill me, makes me stronger.” Feels like a good proposition. I realise now what was killing me was not knowing how to love, be loved back and useful. With faith, courage and confidence, I am learning emotional and spiritual life. Learning what it is to be loved, to be able to love back without conditions and simply useful one day at a time. Strength in learning and humility keep me safe today…
December 28 2010 ~ twelve step living, to love, be loved back and included. "How am I feeling today, why and what can I do?" is being assertive. then I am half way there, "How are we feeling, why and what can we do?" is the second part of the equation, feeling empathy and understanding. Assertive and Empathy, one is not much good without the other today...
December 28 2010 ~ suit up and show up, part of being credible and trustworthy is simply a part of the answer. What is going on inside us, and our principles to be open, honest and willing. To set aside our wants and desires in helping others. Often we may be the right person, and often the inappropriate person when it comes to sharing our message of hope today...
AA Daily Reflections ~ "SUIT UP AND SHOW UP in A.A. we aim not only for sobriety - we try again to become citizens of the world that we rejected, and of the world that once rejected us. This is the ultimate demonstration toward which Twelfth Step work is the first but not the final step. AS BILL SEES IT, p. 21
The old line says, “Suit up and show up.” That action is so important that I like to think of it as my motto. I can choose each day to suit up and show up, or not. Showing up at meetings starts me toward feeling a part of that meeting, I can talk with newcomers, and I can share my experience; that’s what credibility, honesty, and courtesy really are. Suiting up and showing up are the concrete actions I take in my on-going return to normal living."
December 28 2007
DonInLondon - ‘Day In the Life’ - The God Of My Understanding
God Is Truth
Over and over it seems to me, that the truth will set us free. Everything we are and everything we experience develops into wisdom we can utilise today. There are dark parts to my past. Situations and experience which make me shudder looking back. And then I am released from the dark as I realise anything I may have experienced has happened a million times before and to others. Mankind is not so civilised, not so robust as we might at first assume as we learn the way to live a good life in good conscience. We cannot get to a place of good and good conscience without understanding the dark of living. And most often being dragged into endarkenment,
The opposite to enlightenment. I hear often these enlightened times. Yet as we know the public morality and codes of living are forever changing, so too is our understanding of light and dark. Shades of Grey. Somewhere in there is living and learning to good conscience.
Principles of Living
It was and is good to find the good in living. What we learn to be ourselves and be able to make life work reasonably in the one day at a time programme of my fellowship, Alcoholics Anonymous. I will be forever grateful to be relieved of that burden of drink and alcoholism.
Lifts To and From the Meeting Tonight - The Bolton’s “Courage to Change”
In the meeting it was good to sit and listen and hear a lot of the good people are encountering in recovery. Learning new skills and making new relationships, and surviving the ghosts of Christmas past.
And sometimes when we are in our Christmas gatherings, we feel the old times nag at us or tug gently and don’t disturb us too greatly. And we also maybe find big memories where life was definitely dark and we were powerless over past events, from our very young days. There are plenty of dark memories of many hues for me.
Sometimes we do not know the times past are pretty dark until we reach a certain age and understand what has happened has been plain wrong, and what we were taught was definitely not the right way to live. Those dark thoughts need outlet and sometimes much more professional help to resolve than AA and its fellowship for drink.
My Christmas so Far
A balance of helping others, being in company of family, and many happy moments just being…
And for many others a nightmare of calamity as old memories surge and old times lead to relapses in our serenity, just good maybe in a moment, and hour a day. No more than a day and then we have to recalibrate all over for a new day to either find serenity and simply sometimes endure.
High Noon Today
And at high noon today, it was a good encounter with some solid and simple enthusiasm for living with our wits clear and our memories resolved as best they can.
I recall loves from the past, and with great fondness its sometimes hard to work out why we can still love completely those who are no longer in our lives. Love is eternal, and transferable and persists as much as we live and cannot see another way to emote with people still with us in spirit if not present some way or somehow in how we behave.
Talking with a friend recently, I realise intimacy has been an issue with me, and will remain so. To cherish and be cherished is darn difficult sometimes as we shy away from love of self and others. We cannot always live as if abandoned, yet we still build strong defences not to be caught loving again and finding we are abandoned once more as what we are is not what another wants in this life. Hard indeed, the dark of endarkenment.
Listening over and over to the years of wisdom and my own wisdom which leads more to enlightenment than the dark. Even with less than I may have been and having crossed mid-point in living, I see the good in us all. And the dark which shrouds so many left feeling less than human by the touch of others.
We learn this absolute imperative over and over or we find that we live in torments as we cannot let go and let others face life so. We need find expression always and let the world or a smaller number know where we have come from, our experiences and our strengths and hope, maybe some still needing hope. We need let go and forgive everyone everything, and that also applies to ourselves.
We live our consequences, that is we live with ourselves, and we live with societies and civilisations judgment too. There are always consequences.
Hearing and wanting help another with their problems and seeing how unhelpful I might be in helping sometimes makes me realise always that for some I may be just right to help, for others I am not the right one at all. And there is me of course.
Progressing gently, nowhere near perfect, not on a pedestal , just gentle and supportive. Keeping faith that as time and days go by, my purpose and living will show me the way.
To be human.
Twenty-Four Hours A Day
A.A. Thought For The Day
A.A. may be human in its organization, but it is divine in its purpose. The purpose is to point me toward God and the good life. My feet have been set upon the right path. I feel it in the depths of my being. I am going in the right direction. The future can be safely left to God. Whatever the future holds, it cannot be too much for me to bear. I have the Divine Power with me, to carry me through everything that may happen. Am I pointed toward God and the good life?
Meditation For The Day
Although unseen, the Lord is always near to those who believe in Him and trust Him and depend on Him for the strength to meet the challenges of life. Although veiled from mortal sight, the Higher Power is always available to us whenever we humbly ask for it. The feeling that God is with us should not depend on any passing mood of ours, but we should try to be always conscious of His power and love in the background of our lives.
Prayer For The Day
I pray that today I may feel that God is not too far away to depend on for help. I pray that I may feel confident of His readiness to give me the power that I need.
As Bill Sees It
FAITH-A BLUEPRINT-AND WORK, p. 284 "The idea of 'twenty-four-hour living' applies primarily to the emotional life of the individual. Emotionally speaking, we must not live in yesterday, nor in tomorrow. "But I have never been able to see that this means the individual, the group, or A.A. as a whole should give no thought whatever to how to function tomorrow or even in the more distant future. Faith alone never constructed the house you live in. There had to be a blueprint and a lot of work to bring it into reality. "Nothing is truer for us of A.A. than the Biblical saying 'Faith without works is dead.' A.A.'s services, all designed to make more and better Twelfth Step work possible, are the 'works' that insure our life and growth by preventing anarchy or stagnation." LETTER, 1954
28th December 2006
Down At The Broadway
Yes tonight it was a bike ride down to Fulham Broadway for a meeting in the basement of the new Methodist Church. A great venue for me, far enough away to make the bike ride worthy of doing and keeping my circulation going too. Its becoming very obvious to me that exercise will combat the problem of not being able to walk very far. Cycling works, walking is a real pain, even to Sainsbury’s just over the road. Diabetic neuropathy is no joke. Having had it a long time and only recently diagnosed, I feel ok with it, because I simply know what it is. And then I can get to acceptance.
Text sent to a past Lover and Soul Mate
Why on earth would I want to send her a text? Of course I would, there are or have been issues in my own mind about my conduct through the years. Always driven to work hard, always certain of my love for partners too. A strong bond for another is not lost over the years, when love has been shared and the deep of any connection. And the loss.
Someone asked me after the meeting about ex partners. I had shared in the meeting that getting a text with the message “there is nothing to be sorry for” and a few other kind words, reduced me to tears. Actually it did and happily so, because there have been harsh and unhelpful words and feelings from me, and vice versa. Splitting up is never easy either way. And until now my part in the years since has been pretty much a wounding one. And I realise these days with a clear head, life is just life and we do need to let go that which is gone. What we start to discover as we grieve our loss, and revisit in our mind the love and good times, we can be pulled to negatives and misery too. And my part in the years leads me to sorrow for unkind words which were not appropriate whatever the pain I felt at being left.
And we discussed this a little further, as with death it’s a clean ending in a way, no more or less hurtful, but a conclusion beyond restoration. People can die of a broken heart over death of a loved one it happens all the time, and we can grieve on and on over the living who we don’t have to share our lives. In a way which is peculiar, acceptance of death can be easier than those who live on somewhere else. I have found it so, and it is not the fault of the other person who went, its how I deal with my grief.
After a short text today and with enough sobriety to be able to know where I am today, the tears were for harsh words spoken when love was all I really felt. Love though, today it is truthfully gone in the sense of desire and wanting her back. She is set to other destinations and me too. I accepted at last back in August it was done, and it took recovery and years to make this acceptable to me. Thank you AA, for helping me let go and recognise choice applies to everyone, and we choose more carefully with wisdom learned. And every element of life to now helps us make our decisions.
An old friend, well two years or more shared tonight. Smiles here when we work to the regime of a day at a time, with people like us, who can wander back to the old life given a shock or two. It was good to hear of their Christmas and Boxing Day. And how it was just ordinary and not extraordinary for it being an ordinary one. No fights, no drunk people, no arguments. Gifts chosen with care and with love. And a girlfriend too! What a turnaround for them. And it all felt good.
Many shares to the good of our choices, and to keep safe and to our desire never to drink again, simply a day at a time. Can you imagine a roomful of people who used to drink to deaths door sitting and talking happily about not being drunk to celebrate Christmas? Well we were. And with one exception or two, most felt ok.
Seeing the other side of this, when a person is new into recovery, is surrounded by family and temptation, it makes us all realise who near the next drink can be. Anyone who has sobriety, knows its never far away, unless we keep safe and keep with fellowship.
AA as some said tonight helps us stop self-harm through addiction to alcohol, at the same time, if we choose to stick around, we get to life and learn a new way of life. How to be ordinary, and still unique and authentic, be normal, and do normal things. A miracle indeed. And we can forget how easy it is to lose it all, by one careless moment and research to what if…
So overall tonight its been good. The day has helped me deal with a burden I have had over the years, my behaviour and awful feelings of failure. Sorrows are mended, and acceptance of life today.
I sat in café Nero for a quick coffee and wrote some thoughts down, I feel like doing some more small broadcasts for you tube. I have a blind friend who can access the internet. And a video diary of recovery may be an idea to pursue, if not me then most likely someone will do this and maybe it could be a collaboration, you tube might be a key to this. Maybe? Maybe..
As to Writing
I feel it’s a part of my way of letting go old ideas and trying new ones on. Cathartic.
We always spin around a lot because of our sensitive nature’s, we all have them, and in AA we get to understand much more as we just come along to meetings.
Last night was an odd meeting with the newcomer, and some of our Brethren were pretty off the planet, it worries me when we hear shares not aimed at keeping the newcomer in AA and more about the lunacy some of us experience as we get well. Or lunacy which never leaves some of us. Like any fellowship we have every type of human in it, and we never exclude anyone who has a desire to stop drinking, even and always because we are driven mad with drink before we get through the doors into the rooms of AA. I hope our newcomer does not take another few years like me to get to the next meeting. This is my hope tonight. And that I may rest in good conscience, having made quite a few amends in recent times and cleared most of my part in the difficult affairs of life. Forgiven and still with consequences, as life teaches and people choose.
December 28th 2005
Tortured mantle - Philosophers’ Stone
Our relationship with the unexplained, anything we cannot prove remains instinctive and beyond reason. We are an age into reason, we know and understand more than ever the complexity of our world. Our world...
I have pondered for all my life about belief and faith. I have found hard fact and hard words which condemned my easy judgments made with an empiricists gaze. I have watched many a philosopher argue this way, then that. Then the other and over and over until a conscious wall separates all de facto wisdom and leaves intellect hanging on ego's drift. Ego, our hapless fist, strident and right, makes our world go round. And when a metaphysic's gnarled reckoning sits across the divide, there is no answer than your own. Smile with the hefty weight of reason a blind faith as we find abundance in our quest to accept the inevitable end of a lifelong debate, ended with last breath and gasp... Another’s words follow, adding torture to the argument as free thinkers dwell betwixt and between, knowing the unknown, until next time?
Whether you believe in God or not is not important. Belief can be an obstacle to experience. The main thing is to keep an open mind, and be willing to start the conversation. The experience of so many people is that when they engage in a mental conversation, whether it's with a question or simply sharing what is in their heart, they get a reply. This is God as a personal experience, not just a voice in your head. Not your higher self. But the presence of the Source in your life. God is not a concept, or a belief. You cannot have a conversation with a concept. You cannot have a meaningful relationship with a belief. Worth a try? Dear God. Hold still my good conscience as fires combust and our reckoning is simply beyond our bidding
December 28th 2004
We now know that the true meaning of responsibility is response able or ability to respond. Whatever we may think, say, do, or feel - these are our responses for which we, and no one else, are responsible. This is easy to see but hard to live, for we have been taught to believe and think the opposite. So we don't consciously choose our response, we react instead, and then we blame others for our reaction. No wonder we feel imprisoned by others and our circumstances. The enlightened, on the other hand, have broken the spell, they see the illusion. They take full responsibility for their response abilities and as a consequence, they always hold their own destiny in their own hands. They are free spirits.
Just For Today And Every Day, Cherish Always...
“Awakening as the result of what? The result, or consequence of taking the 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous is a Spiritual Awakening. Please reflect that this step does not say the awakening comes as the result of taking steps 1 through 11, those preceding Step 12. On the contrary, the awakening comes as the result of taking these (all of the twelve) steps, including Step 12. (If you disagree, that is wonderful. Keep on digesting these steps.)” Big Book Bunch
December 2012 | Playlist About Step Twelve: Step Twelve Playlist
AA Official Online Site: Big Book And Twelve And Twelve
AA Official Online Site: Daily Reflections
December 2012 | Step Twelve Reading Video Link:
December 2012 | Video Reading How It Works:
December 2012 | Video Reading A Vision For You:
December 2012 | Video About Grief And Depression