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1/26/15 2:33 A

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1/25/15 9:56 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

In order to arrive at possessing everything, desire to possess nothing.
- St. John of the Cross

Expectations can cause havoc in our daily living. We all have a basic right to be treated with dignity and respect, but that doesn't mean life will always go our way. The twists and turns of life often carry us up rivers of disappointment to shores we never chose to visit.

Facing life as fully involved travelers, without expectations about outcomes, is perhaps the brightest way to travel. Making plans without setting up for certain outcomes makes us flexible people who learn to go with the flow. It has been said that there is a direct proportion between our level of expectation and the amount of stress we have in our lives. Trusting the results to a larger plan allows us to relax and enjoy the adventure of the journey.

As we grow closer to our Higher Power, we find we can let go. We are more peaceful and confident, less frantic and controlling. Trusting that our Higher Power will protect us, no matter what we encounter on our journey, helps us face the future with a calm and loving heart.

Today let me relax into life and let go of my expectations.

Let's walk!


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1/24/15 1:59 P

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1/24/15 10:19 A

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Today's thought from Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

First Things First - Order

Busy people often declare, with some exasperation, that they cannot do everything at once. People with emotional problems, a group that includes many alcoholics, often feel that they are trying to do everything at once. Quite often, this pressure means that we waste our time fretting about all the things facing us, becoming totally ineffective as a result.

The simple slogan "First things first" shows us how to set priorities in an orderly way. In every situation or problem, there is always one step we can take that is more important than the others. Following that, we find a step of second importance, another of third importance, and so on. Sometimes, a certain action comes first simply because other things depend on it.

By using "First things first" as a guiding principle in our lives, we can live in an orderly, disciplined manner. If we have work to do today, we can plan to do the most important things first. If we have to reduce our activities, we can decide which activities we ought to retain. Having made these decisions, we can be at peace about our choices. We cannot do everything at once and we need not feel guilty about it.

Knowing that order is Heaven's first law, I'll do things today in an orderly manner.



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1/23/15 4:15 P

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Edited by: CETANISTAWI at: 1/23/2015 (16:17)
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1/23/15 3:31 P

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Moving Forward

Time past is gone forever, and we can never go back to it. Even our disease progresses forward. We cannot expect to control it by a return to measures which may have worked for a time in the past. Those methods eventually failed, and trying them again will only bring us to the same point of failure.

The only way to avoid repetitious failure is to move forward creatively as our Higher Power leads us. Each day is a new creation, and each day brings new lessons and opportunities. We build on what is past, but we do not need to repeat it.

Moving forward involves risking what is unknown. The old, familiar rut, depressing as it is, is a known quantity. Moving out of it requires that we have courage and that we trust in One who knows and cares. To move on, we must act. Insights do not produce growth until they are accompanied by specific actions.

May I risk new actions as You lead me forward.

Let's walk!


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1/22/15 11:38 P

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Letting go is a decision.

The obsession to pressure other people to see things our way keeps us agitated. In contrast, the wisdom to understand that every person's view has validity, at least for that person, is a gift we receive from working the Twelve Steps. Our daily assignment, then, is to be patient and listen so that we may learn this lesson from women and men who have walked this path already, women and men who have come to understand that letting go of others and their addictions promises relief from the obsession that troubles each of us.

Look around. All of us have tried to force solutions that didn't fit. And we drove ourselves crazy trying to control the behavior of others, certain that "doing it our way" was not only reasonable, but right. Our past sometimes may appear to be a series of failures. But our present experience can be peaceful, hopeful, and successful. It's our decision to let go. A small decision that we can make many times today, every day.

"Let go" are tiny words with huge rewards. If I want to, I can give up my attempts to control someone today. Peace will be my reward.

Let's walk!


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1/22/15 1:59 P

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1/21/15 9:01 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Make yourself at home.

It was night, only a few months after I'd begun my skydiving adventure. It was too cold to stay in my tent; I had rented a cabin near the drop zone. Now I'd come back to hang out for a while, before retiring for the night.

One of the skydivers I'd met recently was sitting in a lawn chair, under the tarped area between the rows of trailers that had been turned into team rooms and student training areas. The evening lights had been turned on. He was wrapped up in a sleeping bag, reading a book under the hazy glow. He was one of the full-time skydivers, who had been attracted to the gypsy lifestyle of the skydiving community as much as the sport itself.

"What are you doing?" I asked.

"I'm in my living room, reading a book," he replied. "Do you like the view of the backyard?" he asked, making a gesture toward the rolling hills that cascaded gently in the background. "That's my patio," he said, pointing to a small area just around the corner. "The morning sun hits there. It's a warm place to sit and eat breakfast. Sometimes I sleep in that tent," he said, pointing off to the side." And sometimes I take my sleeping bag and curl up under the stars in the landing area, over there."

I looked around, almost envious of his freedom.

Sometimes, we get so busy and involved creating a "home" for ourselves that we create a structure that's too safe, limiting, and confined. We forget about our real home, the planet earth. It's good to sleep indoors. It's nice to make ourselves comfortable in our home. But don't let your cozy nest become a locked, confining box.

Stretch your arms, Push the lid off the box. Get out into the world. Walk around. Move about. See the hills, the lakes, the forests, the mountains peaks, the valleys, the rivers.

See how big your world can be. See how connected everything is. See how connected you are, too to all that is. Make yourself comfortable, wherever you are. Make yourself a home and be at home in the world.

God, help me relax and make myself at home in your bountiful world.

Let's walk!


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1/20/15 11:16 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

What a man thinks of himself, that is which determines, or rather indicates, his fate.
--Henry David Thoreau

Let us think of ourselves as made of dust, and allow us to be as proud of it as if it were true. For dust is everywhere. We see it in solemn rooms streaked by sun, dancing like fine angels in a cathedral light. It is the stuff of life. And it drifts down on fancy tables where the richest people eat. It cannot be denied a place. And it returns time and time again like the seasons. It is one of the wonders of the world. And when no one sees or cares, it finds a secret corner in which to keep a solitary peace. It intends no harm. We find it at home on old leather books, the ones that preserve our noblest thoughts. And from where we stand, it seems that even the stars are made of it.

When we feel low, unworthy, or useless, let's remember that these feelings are only a small but important part of us, that even great things are made of small parts and that we, as whole beings, are always greater than the sum of these parts.

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HLTHAPPINESS4C's Photo HLTHAPPINESS4C Posts: 21,681
1/19/15 6:25 P

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Another emoticon one! emoticon emoticon

God Bless!

Cynthia~~~ A follower of Jesus Christ!!

Proverbs 3;5-6
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; acknowledge him, and He will make your paths straight.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


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1/19/15 9:56 A

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1/19/15 8:43 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Slow Down and Live

Many of us rush through our days as well as rush through our meals. Often we let ourselves get so busy that we do not enjoy what we are doing or what we are eating. We swallow life in great gulps instead of savoring it moment by moment.

Hurry and busyness are forms of self-will. Deluded by an exaggerated sense of our own importance, we deem it crucial to perform all tasks and activities according to our personal schedule. Impatient with traffic tie-ups, other people's slowness, or unavoidable delays, we make ourselves tense and miserable by our refusal to accept life as it comes.

Time spent each day in quiet meditation can give us glimpses of God's timelessness. We see that our schedule is not that important after all, when measured against eternity. As the presence of God seeps into our consciousness, we relax into the fullness and peace of each moment. Trusting our Higher Power to order our lives, we can slow down and enjoy God's gifts.

May I exchange hurry and busyness for Your peace.

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1/18/15 9:50 A

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1/18/15 9:37 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Imagination has always had powers of resurrection that no science can match.
--Ingrid Bengis

In the imagination are transmitted messages, from God to us. Inspiration is born there. So are dreams. Both give rise to the goals that urge us forward, that invite us to honor this life we've been given with a contribution, one like no other contribution.

Our imagination offers us ideas to ponder, ideas specific to our development. It encourages us to take steps unique to our time, our place, and our intended gifts to the world. We can be alert to this special "inner voice" and let it guide our decisions; we can trust its urgings. It's charged with serving us, but only we can decide to "listen."

The imagination gives us another tool: belief in ourselves. And the magic of believing offers us strength and capabilities even beyond our fondest hopes. It prepares us for the effort we need to make and for handling whatever outcome God has intended.

My imagination will serve me today. It will offer me the ideas and the courage I need to go forth.

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1/18/15 1:31 A

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1/17/15 9:41 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Celebrate who you are

Today, celebrate who you are. Yes, you have much in common with other people. But you're also uniquely you.

Grab a piece of paper and something to write with. Now write down:

1. A lesson that you have learned in life.
2. A talent that you have, no matter how quirky.
3. Your favorite meal.
4. The name of a friend who respects and likes you for who you are.
5. An activity that you enjoy.

Now, pick up the phone and call your friend. Invite him or her to a celebration with you. Do the activity that you enjoy go for a walk, go to a ballgame, sit at home and watch videos, whatever you like to do. Then prepare your favorite meal or go to a restaurant and have them prepare it. Show your friend your talent remember this person likes and respects you for who you are. So if you can balance e a ping pong ball on the tip of your nose, go ahead and do that. Show him or her how good you are. Talk to your friend about the lessons you have learned, and invite him or her to share a lesson learned from you.

Instead of fussing and worrying about how different you are, be grateful that you're unique.

Celebrate being you.

God, thanks for me, too.

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1/17/15 3:06 A

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What a powerful and beautiful reminder that will help me get a closer relationship with God, my HP. Thank you for sharing! emoticon emoticon

Cynthia~~~ A follower of Jesus Christ!!

Proverbs 3;5-6
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; acknowledge him, and He will make your paths straight.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


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1/16/15 5:11 P

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1/16/15 8:47 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

There is no right way to pray.

Prayer is not a requirement of Twelve Step programs like Al-Anon. In fact, the program has no requirements. It has only suggestions that if followed will change how we see our experiences. This, in turn, mysteriously changes our very experiences. One suggestion is that we seek, through prayer and meditation, to know God and God's will for us.

The idea of prayer scares some of us initially. It seems religious. However, we learn from other people, if we're open to their words, that the program is not religious but spiritual. This means that we can expect help from a Power who wants to safeguard our lives. All we have to do is let that Power in, using any method that feels comfortable. Kneeling to pray isn't for everyone. Having friendly casual "chats" appeals to some. Others seek knowledge of God in a bird's song or a flower's blossom. Whatever is comfortable is not only adequate but appropriate.

Praying in our own special way becomes a wonderful habit. It protects us all day long, giving us strength every time we need it.

I will relish my moments with God today. They will help me in every circumstance. I'm never alone as long as I remember God.

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1/15/15 12:54 P

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1/15/15 8:44 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

The human brain forgets ninety percent of what goes on.
--Jan Milner

There were two women who shared a house and raised their daughters, two toddlers, together. Then one of the women got transferred to another city and moved with her daughter.

Ten years later, they had a reunion. The mothers asked their kids what they remembered about living together. Did they remember all the books? No. Did they remember a mom in the kitchen every morning, fixing eggs and toast? No.

What they remembered was playing in the pink bathtub for hours, pulling the pink shower curtain shut for privacy. And the morning the mothers sneaked in, turned off the lights, threw plastic cups and spoons over the curtain and cried, "It's raining spoons!" They laughed and laughed.

We are lucky in this life - our minds think laughter is what's worth remembering.

What laughter from yesterday can I remember today?

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1/14/15 9:52 A

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1/14/15 8:56 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

When we are feeling unloved and depressed and empty inside, finding someone to give us love is not really the solution.
--Gerald G. Jampolsky, M.D.

Each of us wants to be significant to someone else. And we are - we're significant to all the lives we're touching at this very moment.

The emptiness we sometimes feel is a good reminder that the women and men in our lives need our attention. Too much self-focus fosters our feelings of loneliness, and then with desperation we look to others to fill us up. The paradox is that we heal ourselves while offering our attention to another who is, by design, on our path.

It is not by chance our lives are intertwined. Loving someone today will heal two wounds, ours and theirs.

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1/13/15 9:53 A

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1/13/15 8:55 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

You love me so much; you want to put me in your pocket. And I should die there smothered.
--D. H. Lawrence

Adult children often try to control people to keep them from moving away. To ensure that we won't be left alone, we might smother-love them with everything we have.

Of course, we become obsessed with the person we're trying to control. But even worse, this caretaking behavior eventually leads us to become more addicted to the problem than to the person. We become good at solving other people's problems and wiping away their tears; that's our skill. And that's why we so often end up attracting and being attracted to people who have monumental personal problems.

Oftentimes, our very hanging on guarantees the relationship will fail. When we try to control those we love we stand the chance of crippling our loved ones and ourselves. We must first aim for being healthy ourselves - only then can we learn to be part of a healthy relationship.

Today, I will let my loved ones face their own problems. I can love these people without fixing them.



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1/12/15 2:35 P

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1/12/15 8:45 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Recovery is civil war, but it is a war that can be won.
--Sister Imelda

How often do we hear people say, "Sure, I know it's the right thing to do - but it's easier said than done!'' But "it," whatever "it" is for each of us, is actually easier done than not done. As hard as it is to turn our will and our behavior toward recovery, failing to recover is much harder. Ultimately, any price we pay for recovery is far less than the cost of giving up everything we've gained.

Some of us have a very difficult time making phone calls. Others are scared to death of speaking at meetings, talking to strangers, or admitting that we have feelings. But the alternative has simply been too painful. Whatever we have to do is worth it. The payoff is immense. How many of us, when we did attend that meeting that frightened us, felt an enormous surge of self-confidence and happiness? How often, when we have stood our ground and found it did not kill us, have we felt that we could lick the world? The payoff is that we learn to like ourselves more, and that is as good as it gets.

I will make sure today that I am not forgetting the benefits of recovery and only considering the price of recovery.

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1/11/15 1:16 P

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1/11/15 12:41 P

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Simply Beautiful! emoticon for sharing!

Cynthia~~~ A follower of Jesus Christ!!

Proverbs 3;5-6
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; acknowledge him, and He will make your paths straight.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


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1/11/15 9:35 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

When I feed on resentments and anger, I am giving someone else rent-free space in my head.
--Kathy Kendall

Becoming consumed by our emotions is all too familiar. It was a favorite pastime before we got clean and sober, and it still may "own" us. Much to our dismay, sponsors remind us that we're getting a payoff or we wouldn't continue the practice. They also tell us it's never too late to give it up.

We can begin immediately. Let's breathe in the positive. It takes the same effort as dwelling on resentments, and the outcome is so much healthier. Let's bring our blessings to mind first. Breathe in the images of friends and the smiles we share. Breathe in the image of our Higher Power and those comforting arms. Breathe in the bright light of healing that is the program's gift. Breathe in the peace that comes with knowing all is finally well.

Giving our minds over to loving images heals us. The hurts of the past can reach us no more if we breathe in the good.

I will breathe in my Higher Power today. I will dwell on the safety and serenity of my journey.

Edited by: AJDOVER1 at: 1/11/2015 (09:36)
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1/10/15 12:42 P

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1/10/15 12:37 P

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Who Knows Best?

Others do not know what's best for us.

We do not know what's best for others.

It is our job to determine what's best for ourselves.

"I know what you need." . . . "I know what you should do." . . . "Now listen, this is what I think you should be working on right now."

These are audacious statements, beliefs that take us away from how we operate on a spiritual plane of life. Each of us is given the ability to be able to discern and detect our own path, on a daily basis. This is not always easy. We may have to struggle to reach that quiet, still place.

Giving advice, making decisions for others, mapping out their strategy, is not our job. Nor is it their job to direct us. Even if we have a clean contract with someone to help us - such as in a sponsorship relationship - we cannot trust that others always know what is best for us. We are responsible for listening to the information that comes to us. We are responsible for asking for guidance and direction. But it is our responsibility to sift and sort through information, and then listen to ourselves about what is best for us. Nobody can know that but ourselves.

A great gift we can give to others is to be able to trust in them - that they have their own source of guidance and wisdom, that they have the ability to discern what is best for them and the right to find that path by making mistakes and learning.

To trust ourselves to be able to discover - through that same imperfect process of struggle, trial, and error - is a great gift we can give ourselves.

Today, I will remember that we are each given the gift of being able to discover what is best for ourselves. God, help me trust that gift.

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1/9/15 11:23 P

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1/9/15 8:40 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

If you do not express your own original ideas, if you do not listen to your own being, you will have betrayed yourself.
--Rollo May

Those of us who go around trying to be right and do everything right are likely to betray ourselves. We stifle our impulses and control our intuition because we can't be certain that we are correct. As a spiritual exercise, we could stop now and listen to our inner selves and state our own ideas. What comes out may break the illusion of perfection and free us to proceed with life.

We all have original ideas if we just notice them. What images come to mind while listening to music? What do our dreams tell us? New insights sometimes come by physical activity. Conversation with a friend can help lead us to our wisdom. Our growing strength in recovery requires that we listen to our own messages and then take some risks to express them.

Today, I will take risks by stating my ideas. I will stand up for myself by listening to my intuition.

Let's walk!


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1/9/15 8:40 A

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Prayers for you, Cynthia!
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1/9/15 12:01 A

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emoticon emoticon emoticon for sharing this powerful mediation.

I have had a hard time putting faith and trust in God. I mean I know he loves and I believe that when I pray for others he in his perfect time will answer;even if it's not the answer we might not want. The thing for me is that I have trouble trusting and believing that he loves me and cares about me. This is a self esteem issue and feeling unworthy. Yes I know from past experience when my faith has been strong or even weak He has been faithful and that he always will be. I wish I could just nail that down and keep believing with faith.

I really needed to hear this tonight! God bless!

Cynthia~~~ A follower of Jesus Christ!!

Proverbs 3;5-6
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; acknowledge him, and He will make your paths straight.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


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1/8/15 12:54 P

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1/8/15 8:52 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

God does not require that we be successful, only that we be faithful.
--Mother Teresa

It is probable we have never equated success with faith. Being successful meant accomplishing worthy goals and receiving the expected praise. We may have even considered that relying on faith to help us was a cop out. Fortunately, so much about how we interpret life has changed since joining this journey through recovery.

In Step Three we learn that God wants us to have faith. We are coming to see, in fact, that acting as if we have faith begins to feel like faith. Coming to believe that God's only expectation is that we turn within for guidance makes every circumstance far less threatening.

Practicing faith promises that we will begin to feel successful in all our experiences because we are walking through them peacefully, trusting fully that God is at hand. Believing in God, being truly faithful, can be the greatest success of our lives.

I can be faith-filled today if I turn my life and my will over to the care of God. I will remind myself of this every time I get in the "driver's seat."

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1/7/15 9:53 A

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1/7/15 8:41 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

A controller doesn't trust his/her ability to live through the pain and chaos of life. There is no life without pain just as there is no art without submitting to chaos.
--Rita Mae Brown

It is very hard for most of us to see how controlling we are. We may feel uptight or careful, but we haven't seen it as controlling ourselves or controlling how people respond to us. We may be worried about a loved one's behavior or safety, but not realize our hovering over that person is a controlling activity. We may be keenly aware of other people's controlling behavior with us, but unaware we have equaled their control by monitoring them and trying to change their behavior.

What a moment of spiritual adventure it is to risk living through the pain! When we do not seek an escape or a quick fix but have patience with the process, new possibilities often do develop. We can only let go of our control - or turn it over to our Higher Power. And we will do it and forget, taking control back within minutes or within an hour. Then we let go again.

Today, I will submit to the insecurity of a changing universe and have faith that I can live through the process and grow.

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1/6/15 2:29 P

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1/6/15 8:48 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Life is for enjoying. It is not a race to see how much you can get done.
--Jill Clark

Before we quit using alcohol and other drugs, we wasted precious hours, days, maybe years. Consequently, we feel we must make up for lost time. We make promises and commitments we don't have the time or the energy to fulfill. This is a normal response to hindsight. After all, we missed many wonderful opportunities when our focus was on getting and staying high.

Making up for the past is different from making the most of each twenty-four hours. It's not how much we accomplish in life but how we treat others along the way that counts. We can accomplish our daily tasks while being kind to other people. But choosing the latter as the more important action will bring a far greater sense of well-being than succeeding at "moving mountains."

I will get done everything I really need to do today if I focus on being kind to the women and men who cross my path.

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1/5/15 10:26 A

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1/5/15 8:19 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Let Go and Let God.
--Twelve Step slogan

Some days we might ask ourselves, Is it worth it? We feel alone. No one seems to care. Life seems hard. Recovery seems hard.

This is when we need to slow down and take a look at what's going on. We're feeling this way because we're off our recovery path. We may be back into wanting people to see things our way, or do things our way. We want control.

Remember, all problems are not our problems. All work is not our work. We can't have everything the way we want it. But we can do our part and let go of the rest. Then we can feel better.

Prayer for the Day
Higher Power, help me remember my only work today is to do Your will for me. It is not my job to be You.


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1/4/15 6:12 P

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1/4/15 9:37 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

"All too often," confesses a gal, "I get so caught up in hurry and worry that I ignore my own needs. I push myself so hard to get this and that done that I make myself physically ill before I have the sense to rest. There's got to be a better way!"

Some of us, it seems, have to learn the importance of rest and relaxation the hard way. We push ourselves to the limit, often to the point of illness or injury, before we allow ourselves to stop.

We can avoid this vicious circle if we realize our limitations. One of those limitations is found in the law of "Supply and Demand." We cannot meet demands if we have depleted our resources. Just as a fire cannot burn without fuel, so our bodies and minds cannot function without food and rest.

Today before I drive myself to the point of complete exhaustion, I will set aside as much time as I need to fill my depleted energies. I will get more rest, participate in an enjoyable activity, or have an inspiring conversation with a friend to renew my strength and courage.

Let's walk!


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1/4/15 3:58 A

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1/3/15 3:57 P

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

When I came in, they told me, "Let us love you until you can learn to love yourself."
--Anonymous

It takes a long time to learn to love ourselves. So many things we've done seem hard to forgive. We might be trying to dig out from under tons of negative garbage, negative images. Fortunately, our friends in this program do love us. That will sustain us as we try to get the picture of ourselves back into proper focus.

The thing we must get locked firmly in our mind is that it's all right to be who we have been and who we are now. We know how to repair the damage now. Our program shows us the way to recovery, the way back to genuine esteem in ourselves as God's creations. God made us, and always loves us just the way we are.

I will try to love myself, remembering that God and other people love me as I am.

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1/2/15 9:12 P

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1/2/15 10:05 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

The new is but the old come true; each sunrise sees a new year born.
--Helen Hunt Jackson

We know that a totally new life can begin on any day of a year, at any hour of the day, or at any moment of an hour. That new life began the moment we decided to surrender and admit to powerlessness over a substance or an impulse. It began when we accepted the fact that we needed help and could receive it simply by asking.

Many of us used to choose New Year's Day as a time for making good resolutions and swearing off bad habits. When we failed, we simply shrugged and said, "Maybe I can start tomorrow, next week - or next New Year's Day." We were always going to "turn over a new leaf."

Now, in recovery, we no longer depend on doing it all alone. We know we can stay abstinent only by sharing with fellow members.

Let me remember, each day in recovery is another milestone. I no longer have to use a calendar.

Let's walk!


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1/1/15 1:52 P

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1/1/15 9:37 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Reflection for the Day
In the old days, I saw everything in terms of forever. Endless hours were spent rehashing old mistakes. I tried to take comfort in the forlorn hope that tomorrow would be "different." As a result, I lived a fantasy life in which happiness was all but nonexistent. No wonder I rarely smiled and hardly ever laughed aloud. Do I still think in terms of "forever"?

Today I Pray
May I set my goals for the New Year not at the year-long mark, but one day at a time. My traditional New Year's resolutions have been so grandly stated and so soon broken. Let me not weaken my resolve by stretching it to cover "forever" - or even one long year. May I reapply it firmly each new day. May I learn not to stamp my past mistakes with that indelible word, "forever." Instead, may each single day in each New Year be freshened by my new-found hope.

Today I Will Remember
Happy New Day.


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12/31/14 12:26 P

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12/31/14 9:37 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Time is a circle. The end is the beginning.

Day by day, a year comes and goes. Today's end is the beginning of the rest of our lives. We take with us what we have learned today. We are the same and not the same.

As long as we are alive, we will continue to wrestle with questions, seek answers, and solve problems. Let's be gentle with ourselves and others, choosing to respond with non-judging love and acceptance instead of unrealistic demands of perfection.

We have found a blueprint for recovery. Our preoccupation with not enough and too much has led us to a spiritual solution. Each day brings us new opportunities to express our development - a more patient response to a traffic jam, the ability to empathize with a child's embarrassment, the acceptance of a disappointment. Today is another day to learn how to be serene, to nurture body and spirit so that we may function as an integrated totality. We will continue to learn and grow toward recovery.

I will begin and end today by listening to my inner voice.


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12/31/14 7:41 A

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thank you for these posts!

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12/31/14 3:04 A

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12/30/14 8:00 P

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Being less than perfect.

It was not a perfect year. But is there ever a perfect year? Being clean and sober does not purport or offer perfection. It gives us a chance to strive for progress. When we keep our Higher Power in our thoughts and actions, we come closer to perfection all the time.

Despite the disappointments of our complex lives, we are finally beginning to learn how to live. We are finally making progress.

Am I content to be less than perfect?

Higher Power, I pray that I may continue to strive for progress and be satisfied to be an imperfect human.


Let's walk!


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12/30/14 9:42 A

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12/29/14 4:34 P

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Has it been a year of growth?

As any year draws to a close, we should reflect on how we have grown in sobriety. We should also identify changes during the year that enabled us to overcome bad habits and to move closer to better patterns of living.

Though we never are guaranteed favorable outcomes, we should always remember that sobriety is its own best reward. We want a full life, of course, but it must begin with a decision to seek and to maintain sobriety at all costs.

We find that with sobriety, lots of other problems seem to solve themselves. Even if they don't, we have the tools to move forward and to achieve goals that always eluded us while we were drinking. Every year in sobriety is a year of growth.

I'll be conscious today of recent improvements I've made in my life and all my affairs. With sobriety, these improvements will go on for a lifetime.

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12/28/14 1:54 P

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12/28/14 11:24 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

One needs something to believe in, something for which one can have wholehearted enthusiasm.
--Hannah Senesh

Life offers little if we sit passively in the midst of activity. Involvement is a prerequisite if we are to grow. For our lives' purposes we need enthusiasm; we need enthusiasm in order to greet the day expectantly. When we look toward the day with anticipation, we are open to all the possibilities for action.

We must respond to our possibilities if we are to mature emotionally and recover spiritually. Idly observing life from the sidelines guarantees no development beyond our present level. We begin to change once we start living up to our commitment to the program - its possibilities and our purpose - and it's that change, many days over, that moves us beyond the negative, passive outlook of days gone by.

The program has offered us something to believe in. We are no longer the people we were. So much more have we become! Each day's worth of recovery carries us closer to fulfilling our purpose in life.

I believe in recovery, my own; when I believe in success, I'll find it. There is magic in believing.


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12/27/14 9:59 P

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12/27/14 7:07 P

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Love-ability

A friend of mine recently told me how he met his wife. He had watched her walk by his store every day for a year with her young son. She also happened to be a friend of his neighbor.

"Fix me up," he suggested to his neighbor. "We'll go on a double date. I really want to meet her." Unfortunately, the neighbor never got around to setting up that first date.

Finally my friend devised a plan. Every day when she walked by the store, they said hello to each other, but she never stopped to chat. This day, he was ready. He had his store keys in hand. "Would it be all right if I walked with you for a while?" he asked when she walked by.

"Don't you have to mind your store?"

"I'll lock it up," he said.

"You don't have to do that," she said. "We can sit here and chat."

That Friday, they had their first date. She was nervous.

The next weekend, they went out again. She was still nervous. He turned to her, "You can relax," he said. "I'm not going to try anything inappropriate. I just want to enjoy your company." As time passed, she did relax, and they continued to become friends. Three years later, they were married in a small ceremony. "I didn't want to overwhelm her son," my friend recalled.

He wrote his wedding vows. He promised to love her and care for her all of his life. He promised to love her son and protect him, as if he were his own. She lit up his life, he said, and he was grateful for her promise of companionship for the rest of their lives.

My friend is a lucky man, but not just because he found someone he truly loves. He is lucky because he is able to recognize the gift of his wife's love. Most of us have the ability to see when we have been harmed, hurt, or slighted, when we're not loved or treated the way we'd like to be. But we can learn to see those acts big and small when someone shows us love. They are the greatest gifts of all.

Call it believing we deserve love, lovability, or love-ability, the value is opening our eyes and hearts so we can see and receive love from others, friends, family, romantic involvements, and God.

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12/26/14 12:41 P

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12/26/14 12:00 P

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Working today

As we approach a new year, many of us feel fear. We look back on the past and worry about the future. But if we remember we only have today, we can work to make that future better. We have found true friends in our fellowship, and this is a time to be with them.

Am I ensuring a fruitful future by working with all I've got today?

Higher Power, I pray for guidance for today and for freedom from worry about tomorrow.

Let's walk!


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12/26/14 2:41 A

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12/25/14 10:59 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Celebration is a forgetting in order to remember. A forgetting of ego, of problems, of difficulties. A letting go.
--Matthew Fox

A holiday presents us with an opportunity to practice the letting go of this program. This is a special day to set aside our work and our routines, to put our problems and burdens on the shelf. Let us join with others who are also letting go on this day and celebrate. Maybe we can learn from them how they do it.

We may have been too compulsive on past holidays to celebrate. Or perhaps our holidays are clouded with painful memories. We might miss loved ones or we may recall disappointments for the chaos of earlier holidays. There is no need for perfection in our celebration. We can have some tension, or pain, and yet set it aside as we join with others for a special day.

Today, I will set my ego aside and let go of the usual things in my life in order to reach out to others and participate in celebration.


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12/24/14 9:03 P

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12/24/14 6:56 P

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

... [To] take something from yourself, to give to another, that is humane and gentle and never takes away as much comfort as it brings again.
--Thomas More

We take different kinds of pleasure in giving. Perhaps the purest is the gift to a child so young it doesn't really know who the gift came from; the pure joy that the teddy bear or pull-toy produces is our regard, unmixed by any expectation of return.

When children get older, we want something back from them: gratitude, respect. The gift is less pure. When lovers exchange gifts, their pleasure is often tinged with anxiety: Did I give more than I got? Did I get more than I gave? Or with power: He'll always remember where he got that shirt; she owes me something for the fur jacket.

To friends and relations our gifts reflect many things: our appreciation of their lives, our shared memories, our prosperity. We tend to give in a spirit of self-expression.

Perhaps the closest we can come to a pure gift is an anonymous one; a gift of volunteer work, of blood, or a contribution to a charity. Such a gift which can never be acknowledged or returned by those it comforts can heal our spirits when they are wearied by too much ego.

The gift of myself can be a gift to myself.

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12/23/14 9:58 A

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12/23/14 8:41 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

To practice five things under all circumstances constitutes perfect virtue; these five are gravity, generosity of soul, sincerity, earnestness, and kindness.
--Confucius

Some of us were raised to decline generosity - to argue over who pays the restaurant bill, not to accept money for helping someone out, not to accept food or drink at someone's home. Some of these beliefs have strong cultural ties. Others are just a fear of imposing. We don't want to be a bother.

Generosity is a two-way street. It's just as important for someone to be generous as it is to accept the offerings. Most of us like to be generous. When we're being genuine, from the heart, with no strings attached, being generous makes us feel good -- it makes us feel great. We have no reason to deny others that feeling (unless, of course, there are strings attached). In fact, our own generosity is probably just coming back to us.

Today I will allow others the opportunity to be generous.

Let's walk!


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12/22/14 9:55 A

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12/22/14 8:30 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Keep your recovery First to make it Last.
--Anonymous

We all encounter places, people, and times of the year which trigger memories of our old lifestyle, pleasant or painful events. Holidays and family gatherings may be especially stressful times for us.

There have always been a lot of expectations associated with holidays. Many of us may feel pressured to fulfill those expectations. We need to remember that it is a naturally stressful time and we may feel more nervous than usual. We can avoid forcing moods or events on ourselves or those around us.

In recovery, we are given tips that have helped many members during the holidays. We plan extra Program activities and keep our phone list handy. We skip any slippery occasions that make us uneasy. We attend special Program events. We take a fellow member with us to a possibly slippery party if we feel uncomfortable going alone.

When I keep my recovery Number One in my mind, the holidays, with the help of my friends, will be enjoyable and less stressful.


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CETANISTAWI's Photo CETANISTAWI Posts: 3,210
12/21/14 12:52 P

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AJDOVER1's Photo AJDOVER1 SparkPoints: (253,084)
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12/21/14 9:42 A

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Today's thought from the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is:

Forgiveness is all-powerful. Forgiveness heals all ills.
--Catherine Ponder

Getting mad at someone, a friend perhaps, is normal. Everybody gets mad sometimes. But when we stay mad for very long, it ruins all the fun we'd planned on having throughout the day. Staying mad multiplies. Sometimes it seems we are mad at the dog, our mom, another friend, even the TV.

Forgiving the people we're mad at works like magic. We don't even have to forgive them out loud. We can forgive them in our own minds. The result is the same. Pretty soon the whole day looks bright again. When we're mad, we are the ones who suffer most.

Who can I forgive today, and make my day a better one?

Let's walk!


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