Sunday, November 25, 2007

Just for Today

In the meeting last night, we talked about the meaning of this reading:

Just for today
I will try to live through this day only,
and not tackle all my problems at once.
I can do something for twelve hours that would
appall me if I felt I had to keep it up for a lifetime.

I have learned to live in this day and not get stuck in what happened in the past. I also don't dream about the future but do the best that I can to focus on what is happening today. I don't think too much about how permanent situations are but rather that difficult things will eventually pass with time.

Just for today
I will be happy.
This assumes to be true what Abraham Lincoln said,
that "Most folks are as happy as they make up their minds to be."

I don't have much problem most days with being happy. I can have a choice to be miserable or I can choose to focus with gratitude on what's good about this day. There are moments when I crash into the pit but then I remember that won't last. I am lucky in that the glass is generally half full and I don't look for the negative.

Just for today
I will adjust myself to what is,
and not try to adjust everything to my own desires.
I will take my "luck" as it comes, and fit myself to it.

Ah, now here is the hard one for me at times. I am still working at not having expectations. I'm working at giving up wanting things to go the way that I want them to. I know that I have to watch that I don't let myself look forward to feeling the way I expect to feel once something happens, because I can get quite agitated when that thing does NOT happen, or doesn't happen how I pictured it. I don't take disappointment well but am learning that if I temper or have no expectations then I'm not disappointed but pleasantly surprised when things go well.

Just for today
I will try to strengthen my mind.
I will study. I will learn something useful.
I will not be a mental loafer. I will read something
that requires effort, thought and concentration.

I don't have any problem with this since every day I'm working on something to strengthen my mind. It's my work. I sometimes think that I need the time when I can loaf and not think which is why I am glad to have the sailboat.

Just for today
I will exercise my soul in three ways.
I will do somebody a good turn, and not get found out;
if anybody knows of it, it will not count.
I will do at least two things I don't want to - just for exercise.
I will not show anyone that my feelings are hurt;
they may be hurt, but today I will not show it.

This is another big one for me. And it's a more complicated one with a lot to think about. I guess it's all about selflessness, though, and sacrifice. I really like doing nice things for people, but part of what feels nice when someone does something for me is knowing they have. So I feel it's sort of counter-intuitive of me to do nice things in secret. But maybe also I just want to feel like people are pleased with me.

Doing two things I don't want to do every day could pretty much solve almost every problem I've ever had. I'm working on this one, and it is helping. Usually the two things I don't want to do everyday involve paperwork of some sort.

When I first read the one about not showing that my feelings were hurt, I thought that that was crazy. If you've grown up in a household where someone drank and criticized and then were married to an alcoholic, well, you've probably spent a lot of time not expressing your feelings or treading easily for fear of doing something wrong. I thought that it would be important to not keep my hurt feelings to myself now. But then the more that I thought about it, I realized that I would feel hurt easily and that most of the time, I've felt that my problems were always my fault. Then I would sink into self pity and blurt out what I was feelings to whoever I trusted.

What I've come to learn is that feelings aren't facts necessarily and that I don't need to blurt out every little hurt because in doing so it's not fair or constructive. I also have to look at my part in why I feel hurt. What was my role? If I express my feelings, I need to be able to do so without holding someone hostage or having those feelings be resented for what they seem to demand.

Just for today
I will be agreeable.
I will look as well as I can, dress becomingly,
keep my voice low, be courteous, criticize not one bit.
I won't find fault with anything,
nor try to improve or regulate anybody but myself.

I think that one is over the top about the dress. I can see being agreeable if it's something I agree with. I can also be courteous and not judge or criticize others. I guess that I will look okay but I'm not going to put on a suit or dress to impress. It's not me. I also accept that I'm powerless and won't regulate anyone but myself.

Just for today
I will have a program.
I may not follow it exactly, but I will have it.
I will save myself from two pests: hurry and indecision.

I am grateful for the program. And I won't ever follow it exactly because it is progress not perfection. But the program is there for me. And I know that if I do the steps and go to meetings, I'll feel better.

I used to take on more than I could manage and would get stressed and hurried. Now I say NO to things that I don't want to do. I don't want to feel rushed. I want to think First Things First and Keep It Simple. What's the point of being rushed, when you don't even know what you are rushing toward?

I've never been indecisive about things related to work. But I do know that I've lived in unpredictable situations. And sometimes I felt reactive because of the situation. Now I just try to accept Life on Life's Terms and make decisions as things occur. I don't plan every day but think of it as a somewhat blank page. Then I deal with what comes up. I also like the idea of practicing the third step in which I made a decision to turn my life and my will over to the care of God as I understood him. That means I'm not always in control but can trust that my HP will help to guide me.

Just for today
I will have a quiet half hour all by
myself and relax. During this half hour, sometime,
I will try to get a better perspective of my life.

I do this in a number of ways. Taking walks on the beach and going sailing are my favorite ways to meditate. I also exercise and find that is a great way to let go of negative feelings.

Just for today
I will be unafraid.
Especially I will not be afraid to enjoy
what is beautiful and to believe that as I give to the world,
so the world will give to me.

I don't feel afraid of much any more. I also think that the world is beautiful and that there are many beautiful things every day to enjoy. I think that giving is far better than receiving. And there are many ways in the program to do service that will help make me a better person.


  1. thank you for your 'just for todays' and greetings from austin texas.

  2. Wonderful words, Syd and I clearly needed to hear them today.

  3. What a great meeting to explore this reading. There is so much to one day it seems strange that we can get too focused on yesterday or tomorrow.

    Thank goodness for such a spiritual foundation, some tools and the concept of progression!

  4. dressing becomingly doesn't mean suits or dresses to me. I sure have changed my style in the last year in particular. I will always wear a skirt or dress at the podium. I find myself in brighter colors these days---more becoming for me!


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