Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Changed attitudes

I don't know about the rest of you, but I certainly intend to give it my best to live life with a song in my heart and a smile on my face. No matter how tough things tend to be, I know that there will be hope and optimism shared here and at meetings. I thank all of you bloggers for that.

I have often used an old defense mechanism from my childhood to re-create a world that was happy outwardly. No matter what was going on around me, I could find a way to get through the tough times and survive what seemed unbearable.

Today, that isn't so. It doesn't have to be. Al-Anon is a program of "changed attitudes." If I work the program, my life is more about acting on behalf of myself rather than reacting to the actions and behaviors of others. I can regard my life since Al-Anon as a blank canvas on which I can begin painting again at any time.

The choices are mine as to what I envision. I can create a new reality based on the truths I've learned about myself and not what I think the truth of others might be. I talked to a sponsee about that at our noon meeting today. Others have their own truths. I have mine that comes from within and from the unconditional love and support of myHigher Power.

I've learned these truths by listening in meetings, talking to my sponsor, and by risking to try new experiences and applying what I learned through the steps. For me at least, this is how I learned what I liked and didn't, what I was deserving of and when I was taking less than what I deserved.

Knowing my higher power is always there to ask for help as are those in this program is a very positive force in my life. So....even though I once wondered how people in Al-Anon ever got to that place of feeling serene with just an occasional slip, today I know or at least believe that a combination of what I've written above has brought me to that place too.

I am trying to look at life as one big ball of imperfect humanity of which I am a part. Working the program has helped me find humor in even the worst situations because .......well, there's no denying that some things are just funny (maybe a little more so when its over and I've gotten through it).

All I know is that building on the negativity and the miserable aspects of a situation only digs a deeper hole for me. Staying hopeful and looking to build on constructive possibilities, like what was learned from an uncomfortable experience, seems like a better bet than going into a downward spiral of self-pity. It doesn't mean I change the facts, it doesn't mean deciding everyone is a good person and not taking care of myself; rather, it means that I have an open mind when listening to others and that I ask my HP to help me identify my real feelings and to be true to myself.

I'm off to a work meeting out of state. I'll check back in when I can. Have a good day everyone.


  1. Whoo-Hoo.............love this POST............going to reread it a few times. :)

    Last night f2f was on Keeping the Focus on Yourself. :)


    Betty Ann ........ms. hen

  2. Syd your first paragraph had me thinking - Whoa - how did he know!

    Travel safe and have a good Tuesday!

  3. Syd, I know why I like you...you're a source of great wisdom--usually -grin!

    Seriously, this posting is "one of the finest" I've read in awhile.
    Thank you for so much stuff.
    Steve E.

  4. JUST what I needed to read ;)
    You always know just what to write,
    Syd.T xo

  5. the title has me singing Jimmy Buffet, though I think his song says changes in altitude.

    Have a safe trip.

  6. Great post,loved the bit about humour, that's one thing the program has given me - the ability to laugh at myself!

  7. Nicely put Syd. Do you think the value is in searching for a better life or accepting the one we inhabit at the very moment.
    Have a safe trip

  8. Hey Syd, good luck on your out of town meeting. Great post, as usual. Without humor, I would surely wither and die. It is a great part of me.

  9. the day i wake up and cannot find a song, cannot find a smile, cannot find the simple pleasure in the things around me, that day, well, i'd consider myself one of the walking dead... thank you syd.

  10. Great post. Just what I needed this morning.

  11. Imperfect humanity...an apt and perfect description of us all. When we learn to accept there is no such thing really as perfection, we begin to see things truly as they are. (Hugs)Indigo

  12. I love how a program of recovery lets us discover our own personal truths.

  13. I finished the fourth step workbook finally but a few other character defects have come out during the last month. Some I remember and some I forgot already. I have a horrible memory and need to write it down the second it comes to me.

    It seems to me that many of the tests I have had over the past few months were sent to me by my HP to assist me in learning some of my character defects and learning how to control them.


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