Kindness and Courtesy – Episode 211

unityHow do kindness and courtesy help us live live more serenely and happily? Can we be kind to our alcoholic or addicted loved ones?

Eric and Spencer share their experiences of how kindness and courtesy work in their lives.

  • What is kindness?
  • What is courtesy?
  • Ways of being kind and courteous:
    • Smiling and saying “hi” to people I interact with in my daily life — bus driver, checkout person at the grocery store, co-workers.
    • Realizing that the person who cut me off on the highway has their issues, and those are not mine is being kind to myself.
    • Responding courteously to anger keeps me calmer and may defuse a tense situation.
    • Keeping my mouth shut when I want to lash out!
  • We read from Al-Anon literature:
  • And from a couple of articles from Psychology Today:

Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email feedback@therecoveryshow.com with your questions or experience, strength and hope. Or just leave a comment right here.
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Living with death – Episode 210

Do you fear your loved one will die? How can recovery help us live with death of those we love? What if that death was long in the past?

This show is sort of a story in 3 parts.

First, Spencer talks about fearing the death of his loved one.

Next, D shares her experience and feelings around the death of her loved one.

Finally, Michelle explores the ways in which recovery has helped her in accepting the deaths of her parents, which occurred long before she found this program.

Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email feedback@therecoveryshow.com with your questions or experience, strength and hope. Or just leave a comment right here.
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My Body, My Codependency – Episode 204

The pit of my stomach is churning.
My neck and shoulders are tense.
I don’t have any energy.
My whole body is out of whack.

Do you feel this way? Have you felt like this? Let’s take a look at how living with alcoholism or addiction can our bodies and our health.

  • How was my body affected by the alcoholism in my house?
    • Laying awake at night worrying — tired and sleepy all the time.
    • “Knot in my stomach” — From “awfulizing” and “catastrophizing” the future and worrying about the present.
    • Anger and resentment — tension in my body — muscle pain
  • I had no energy for anything other than stewing about my situation.
    • No exercise
    • Poor eating habits (junk food)
    • Weight gain
    • Resulting in even less energy
  • The things I did to try to dull the pain.
    • Eating
    • My own drinking
  • Feedback effects
    • Not taking care of my body leads to loss of energy
    • Leading to depressed feelings.
    • And worry about my health.
    • Without the energy to “fix” it..
    • Leading to more not taking care of my body.
  • How does recovery change things?
  • Letting go
    • When I can “let go and let God”, I can loosen the knot of worry. I can relax the tension of anger and resentment. I can get go bed at a reasonable time, because I’m not sitting up late with worry or anger (or both!)
  • “Take care of myself”
    • Easier to do when I start letting go of taking care of my loved one.
    • Eat “right”.
    • Get some exercise.
    • Getting enough sleep.
  • Breathe
  • Meditate
    • Practice being still
    • Relaxing physical tension
  • HALT — Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired — When I am these things, I am more likely to “act out”. Being aware of the state of my body can help me live a calmer, more serene life.
  • Putting myself (my health, my well-being) first
    • Putting on my own oxygen mask
    • Learning to support rather than control
    • Practicing gratitude and acceptance

Readings

From Courage to Change: January 21, July 21, August 16, December 19.

From How Al-Anon Works: Chapter 12, Taking Care of Ourselves.

  • Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email feedback@therecoveryshow.com with your questions or experience, strength and hope. Or just leave a comment right here.

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Feelings – Episode 169

conflictHave you ever felt controlled by your feelings? What feelings could you identify in the past? How do you balance feelings and facts?

  • Were you able to identify feelings (before recovery)?
  • What did you feel?
  • Did you feel?
  • Did you think that certain feelings were “good” and others were “bad”?
  • Did it seem you had to act on/react to your feelings?
  • How did you deny/push down/hide from feelings?
  • Have you heard the saying, “feelings are not facts”?
  • What does it mean to you?
  • How do you use it now?
  • Have you found a “feeling vocabulary” in recovery?
  • How do you respond to feelings now?
  • How are you able to feel, but act from your head?
  • How can you accept that you have feelings, and that they do not have to control your actions?
  • How have your feelings changed?
  • What slogans or tools help you to deal with how you feel?
    • Let go and let God.
    • This too shall pass.
    • Just for today.
    • One day at a time.
    • Easy does it.
    • First things first.
    • Prayer and meditation.
    • Inventory
  • How have you become more aware of and able to feel?

Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email feedback@therecoveryshow.com with your questions or experience, strength and hope. Or just leave a comment right here.
Continue reading “Feelings – Episode 169”

Spencer’s Open Talk – Episode 168

DSC_9877What was it like? What happened? And what is it like now?

Spencer was invited to give an “open talk” recently, and he elected to use this traditional format.

It starts with “what happened?” With that moment when the reality of his powerlessness and the unmanageability of his life crashed down on him. When he heard that “You didn’t cause it, you can’t cure it, and you can’t control it.” And when those words lifted a weight from his shoulders that he hadn’t realized he was carrying. That he had been trying to accomplish the impossible: to make his loved one stop drinking.

He came to see that his journey to Al-Anon has really started much earlier. He believed that it was his job, his task in life, to “rescue” others. And so, maybe it is no surprise that he fell in love with and married an alcoholic. Because, who needs “fixing” or “rescuing” more than an alcoholic. Not that he recognized that at the time!

He came to his first Al-Anon meeting almost unwillingly. After all, he was not the one with the “problem.” But nothing was working, and his life was miserable, so maybe, just maybe, this Al-Anon thing would help.

His recovery story includes coming to understand what “working the steps” means, and learning to trust others with the reality of his life. It includes finding freedom from anger, fear, despair, and rage. It includes experiencing serenity, even when his life was still in the midst of chaos.

And, it includes finding an answer to what seemed an unanswerable question: “I can’t live this way, but I can’t leave either. What can I do!?” The answer turns out to be “I can live.”

Upcoming topics include sorrow and feelings. Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email feedback@therecoveryshow.com with your questions or experience, strength and hope. Or just leave a comment right here.