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.

Step 1: Powerlessness and Power – Episode 160

DSC_5353What does it mean to be powerless? How can admitting powerlessness give you power over the unmanageability of your life?

Spencer and Tom, joined virtually by Sara and Gerrie talk about Step 1, We admitted we were powerless over alcohol, and our lives had become unmanageable.

  • Why is it difficult to admit my powerlessness?
  • How do the effects of alcoholism make my life unmanageable?
  • What is my “First Step story”?
  • What keeps me holding on to the illusion that I have the power to change someone else?
  • How do I determine I am powerless over someone else’s behavior?
  • Do I accept that alcoholism is a disease? How does/did that change how I interact with the drinker?
  • How do I react when others refuse to be or do as I wish?
  • What would happen if I stopped trying to change others? ]
  • How can I let go of others’ problems instead of trying to solve them?
  • Do I say “yes” when I want to say “no”? What happens to my ability to manage my own life when I do this?
  • How can admitting powerlessness lead me to new power?
  • How does Step 1 help me let go of blame and shame?
  • What tools do I use to find serenity when my life seems unmanageable?

Upcoming topics include another “gift of Al-Anon”. “Courage and fellowship will replace fear. We will be able to risk failure to develop new hidden talents.” 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 “Step 1: Powerlessness and Power – Episode 160”

Made a Decision – Episode 67

20130814-130029.jpgI’ve titled today’s episode Made a Decision. I am going to relate my the story of my journey to and through Step 3, “Made a decision to turn our will and our live over to  the care of God as we understood God.” I started from unbelief, was told to “act as if”, found willingness, and eventually surrendered. But still, I must give my will over on a daily basis, because I continue to try to take it back.

  • My Story
    • What is this “God” thing of which you speak?
    • How can I turn my will and my life over to something I don’t believe in?
    • “Act as if”
    • Letting go of my loved one’s recovery (or lack thereof)
    • The meeting and the program as my HP
    • A later understanding of surrender — just going to meetings
    • Unmanageability as motivation
    • Evidence of God working in my life
    • Growing willingness
    • Surrender
    • God suggests — sometimes I listen
    • Daily practice
  • What holds me back?
    • My intellect
    • Fear (of losing control)
    • Desire for my outcome
  • What pushed me forward
    • Clear unmanageability of life
    • Seeing it work — when I listened
    • My will has often led me into trouble
  • Change requires changing — letting go of old ways — I can’t do it alone

Our topic for next week is Forgiveness. 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 “Made a Decision – Episode 67”