DR – October 19, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for October 19, 2017:

Daily Reflection

A.A.’s “MAIN TAPROOT”

The principle that we shall find no enduring strength until we first admit complete defeat is the main taproot from which our whole Society has sprung and flowered.

— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, pp. 21-22

Defeated, and knowing it, I arrived at the doors of A.A., alone and afraid of the unknown. A power outside of myself had picked me up off my bed, guided me to the phone book, then to the bus stop, and through the doors of Alcoholics Anonymous. Once inside A.A. I experienced a sense of being loved and accepted, something I had not felt since early childhood. May I never lose the sense of wonder I experienced on that first evening with A.A., the greatest event of my entire life.

From the book Daily Reflections
Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.

Big Book Quote

If we skip this vital step (5th Step), we may not overcome drinking. Time after time newcomers have tried to keep to themselves certain facts about their lives. Trying to avoid this humbling experience, they have turned to easier methods. Almost invariably they got drunk. Having persevered with the rest of the program, they wondered why they fell. We think the reason is that they never completed their housecleaning. They took inventory all right, but hung on to some of the worst items in stock. They only thought they had lost their egoism and fear; they only thought they had humbled themselves. But they had not learned enough of humility, fearlessness and honesty, in the sense we find it necessary, until they told someone else all their life story.

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, Into Action, pg. 72~

Keep It Simple

A wise man changes his mind, a fool never will.—Seventeenth century proverb

We addicts used to be stubborn. Once we got an idea in our heads, we wouldn’t change it.

We didn’t listen to others ideas. We almost seemed to say, “Don’t tell me the facts. I’ve already made up my mind.”
But lately , some new ideas are making sense to us. We are starting to change our minds. Maybe we are good people, after all. Maybe we do deserve to be happy. Maybe other people can help us. Maybe our Higher Power does know best.

We’re not acting like fools any longer. We’re learning to change our old ideas.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, when I hear a better idea, help me change my mind.

Action for the Day:
When I hear or read a new idea today, I’ll really think about it. If it fits, I’ll try it.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You hope to gain some peace of mind about the unsettled atmosphere at work. You may be inclined to withdraw from the madness and seek refuge in the comfort of your home. Reminiscing as you reflect on memories is an obvious way to get perspective on the present moment. Fortunately, the Libra New Moon refreshes your 4th House of Security, blessing you with a sense of familiarity. No matter what, don’t dwell in the past; just use your recollections as insight while creating your plans for the future.

DR – October 18, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for October 18, 2017:

Daily Reflection

AN OPEN MIND

True humility and an open mind can lead us to faith, . . .

— TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 33

My alcoholic thinking led me to believe that I could control my drinking, but I couldn’t. When I came to A.A., I realized that God was speaking to me through my group. My mind was open just enough to know that I needed His help. A real, honest acceptance of A.A. took more time, but with it came humility. I know how insane I was, and I am extremely grateful to have my sanity restored to me and to be a sober alcoholic. The new, sober me is a much better person than I ever could have been without A.A.

From the book Daily Reflections
Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.

Big Book Quote

We families of Alcoholics Anonymous keep few skeletons in the closet. Everyone knows about the others alcoholic troubles. This is a condition which, in ordinary life, would produce untold grief; there might be scandalous gossip, laughter at the expense of other
people, and a tendency to take advantage of the intimate information. Among us, these are rare occurrences. We do talk about each other a great deal, but we almost invariably temper such talk by a spirit of love and tolerance.

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Family Afterward, pg. 125~

Keep It Simple

When people bother you in any way, it is because their souls are trying to get your divine attention and your blessing. –Catherine Ponder

We are in constant communication with one another and with God in the spiritual realm. No matter how singular our particular course may appear, our path is running parallel to many paths. And all paths will intersect when the need is present. The point of intersection is the moment when another soul seeks our attention. We can be attentive and loving to the people seeking our attention. Their growth and ours is at stake,
We can be grateful for our involvement with other lives. We can be mindful that our particular blessing is like no one else’s and that we all need input from the many significant persons in our lives. There is no insignificant encounter in our passage through life. Each juncture with someone else is part of the destiny of both participants.
I will look carefully and lovingly at the people around me today and bless them, one and all. They are in my life because they need to be. I, likewise, need them.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You are dead serious about being playful today. In fact, you might try to schedule your spontaneity if you thought it was possible. The truth is you are more likely to act on a whim if you’re already taking a planned break. In any event, you will be happier when you communicate your feelings through some kind of creative expression, whether or not it is productive. Theologian Thomas Merton wrote, “Art enables us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time.”

DR – October 17, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for October 17, 2017:

Daily Reflection

A DAILY TUNE-UP

Every day is a day when we must carry the vision of God’s will into all of our activities.

— ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 85

How do I maintain my spiritual condition? For me it’s quite simple: on a daily basis I ask my Higher Power to grant me the gift of sobriety for that day! I have talked to many alcoholics who have gone back to drinking and I always ask them: “Did you pray for sobriety the day you took your first drink?” Not one of them said yes. As I practice Step Ten and try to keep my house in order on a daily basis, I have the knowledge that if I ask for a daily reprieve, it will be granted.

From the book Daily Reflections
Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.

Big Book Quote

When drinking, or getting over a bout, an alcoholic, sometimes the model of honesty when normal, will do incredible things. Afterward, his revulsion will be terrible. Nearly always, these antics indicate nothing more than temporary conditions.

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, To Employers, pg. 140~

Keep It Simple

Every child is an artist. The problem is remain an artist once your grow up.—Pablo Picasso

We each have colorful ideas waiting to be shared. We’re alive inside. But do we let this side of us show? Our disease stole much of the child like openness. Many of us were taught that growing up meant denying the child within us. Many of us grew up in homes where it wasn’t safe to act alive and creative. Whatever the reason, it’s time to claim the child, the artist, in each of us. Each of our programs is different, and each has its artistic touch. When we tell our stories, we share our life. And our lives are unique and alive. The more alive we become, the more color we bring to others and ourselves. Let’s not be afraid to add color to our lives.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, help me claim the child inside of me. Joy is choice. Help me choose it.

Action for the Day:
Today, I’ll work at not hiding myself from others. I’ll be alive, and I’ll greet everyone I meet with the openness of a child.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You want to see the visible results of your efforts right away, but circumstances beyond your control prevent you from completing the task at hand today. Unfortunately, an unfinished project doesn’t produce the impact you seek, leaving you with little to show for your work. Fortunately, your natural tenacity rides to the rescue now, inspiring you to persist as long as necessary. The initial deadline might come and go, but your unrelenting desire to achieve a positive outcome all but ensures your ultimate satisfaction.

 

DR – October 16, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for October 16, 2017:

Daily Reflection

THROUGHOUT EACH DAY

This is not an overnight matter. It should continue for our lifetime.

— ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 84

During my early years in A.A. I saw Step Ten as a suggestion that I periodically look at my behavior and reactions. If there was something wrong, I should admit it; if an apology was necessary, I should give one. After a few years of sobriety I felt I should undertake a self-examination more frequently. Not until several more years of sobriety had elapsed did I realize the full meaning of Step Ten, and the word “continued.” “Continued” does not mean occasionally, or frequently. It means throughout each day.

From the book Daily Reflections
Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.

Big Book Quote

The alcoholic may find it hard to re-establish friendly relations with his children. Their young minds were impressionable while he was drinking. Without saying so, they may cordially hate him for what he has done to them and to their mother. The children are sometimes dominated by a pathetic hardness and cynicism. They cannot seem to forgive and forget. This may hang on for months, long after their mother has accepted dad’s new way of living and thinking.

In time they will see that he is a new man and in their own way they will let him know it.

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Family Afterward, pg. 134~

Keep It Simple

To err is human, but when the eraser wears out ahead of the pencil, you’re overdoing it. –Josh Jenkins

It’s okay to make mistakes. But we shouldn’t live a life of excuses. We shouldn’t slide over our mistakes; we should learn from them.

Excuses keep us part from ourselves and others. People don’t trust us if we won’t admit and accept our mistakes.
Relying on excuses dooms us to repeat the same mistakes.

In recovery, we admit and accept our behavior. We do this by continuing to take an inventory of our lives. We do this so we can learn from our mistakes. “Owning” our mistakes helps us grow.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, help me own my mistakes. Thank-you for Step Ten and the growth it holds for me.

Action for the Day:
Today, I’ll list my five favorite excuses. I’ll think of the last time I used each of these. What was I trying to avoid.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You are torn between hard work and no work today. The pleasure-seeking Libra Sun tempts you to put up your feet and kick back, even if there are plenty of chores calling your name now. But the Sun’s non-negotiable alignment with dutiful Saturn in your 6th House of Logistics reminds you that it’s disrespectful not to show up when others expect you to hold up your end of the deal. Unfortunately, you can’t call it quits until you meet your obligations. Author Seth Godin writes, “Keep starting until you finish.”

DR – October 15, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for October 15, 2017:

Daily Reflection

MY CHECKLIST, NOT YOURS

Gossip barbed with our anger, a polite form of murder by character assassination, has its satisfactions for us, too. Here we are not trying to help those we criticize; we are trying to proclaim our own righteousness.

TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 67

Sometimes I don’t realize that I gossiped about someone until the end of the day, when I take an inventory of the day’s activities, and then, my gossiping appears like a blemish in my beautiful day. How could I have said something like that? Gossip shows its ugly head during a coffee break or lunch with business associates, or I may gossip during the evening, when I’m tired from the day’s activities, and feel justified in bolstering my ego at the expense of someone else. Character defects like gossip sneak into my life when I am not making a constant effort to work the Twelve Steps of recovery. I need to remind myself that my uniqueness is the blessing of my being, and that applies equally to everyone who crosses my path in life’s journey. Today the only inventory I need to take is my own. I’ll leave judgment of others to the Final Judge–Divine Providence.

Big Book Quote

We alcoholics are sensitive people. It takes some of us a long time to outgrow that serious handicap.

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Family Afterward, pg. 125~

Keep It Simple

Not to decide is to decide. —Harvey Cox

We are winners, because everyday we decide to stay sober. Every day we decide to listen to our Higher Power. We win by making active choices. We’ve stopped acting as if we have no choice. Our old way was to us by accident. Not true. We pretend we had no power. Also not true. We lost our power over alcohol and other drugs, but we still had the power to ask for help. Each time we used chemicals was a decision, just as to stay sober each day is a decision.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, thanks for giving me choices. I will not run from them. Help me make good choices. Help me decide every day to listen to you.

Action for the Day:
Not for one minute will I pretend I am a victim. I’ll face my choices squarely and decide.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You want to clear the air by talking about a sensitive issue today. But your thoughts might not see the light of day if someone cuts you off with an inconsiderate retort before you even finish a sentence. Nevertheless, you don’t need to follow your self-protective instincts now and give up. This is a test to see if you can separate your current experience from the memories connected with old fears. The shadows of your past need not darken the doorway to your future.

DR – October 14, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for October 14, 2017:

Daily Reflection

A PROGRAM FOR LIVING

When we retire at night, we constructively review our day. . . . On awakening let us think about the twenty-four hours ahead. . . . Before we begin, we ask God to direct our thinking, especially asking that it be divorced from self-pity, dishonest or self-seeking motives.

— ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 86

I lacked serenity. With more to do than seemed possible, I fell further behind, no matter how hard I tried. Worries about things not done yesterday and fear of tomorrow’s deadlines denied me the calm I needed to be effective each day. Before taking Steps Ten and Eleven, I began to read passages like the one cited above. I tried to focus on God’s will, not my problems, and to trust that He would manage my day. It worked! Slowly, but it worked!

From the book Daily Reflections
Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.

Big Book Quote

Nearly every modern employer feels a moral responsibility for the well-being of his help, and he tries to meet these responsibilities. That he has not always done so for the alcoholic is easily understood. To him, the alcoholic has often seemed a fool of the first magnitude. Because of the employee’s special ability, or of his own strong personal attachment to him, the employer has sometimes kept such a man at work long beyond a reasonable period. Some employers have tried every known remedy. In only a few instances has there been a lack of patience and tolerance. And we, who have imposed on the best of employers, can scarcely blame them if they have been short with us.

~Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, To Employers, pg. 137~

Keep It Simple

A baby is God’s opinion that the world should go on. —Carl Sandburg

Recovery is also God’s opinion that the world should go on. But when we used alcohol and other drugs, there were days when even the sight of a newborn baby couldn’t bring hope into our hearts. We were spiritually dead. We didn’t care if the world went on. We didn’t care about anything but getting high.

Through recovery, our souls come alive.

The beauty of a fall day can reach our hearts. We can see the miracle found in a baby’s eyes. We can see the beauty of the world. We can feel how much we’re loved by our Higher Power and by others. This is how we know we’re alive. Hope fills our minds and love fill our hearts.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, now that I again believe the world should go on, have me work to improve it. Have me be a person who makes the world more beautiful.

Action for the Day:
Today, I’ll notice the children and babies around me. I’ll notice how alive they are. I’ll try to be as alive as they are.

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You know what you want to say, but your words might not convey your intended thoughts. Although the problem may appear to be with the receiver, you could be inadvertently contributing to the confusion today. Don’t hold back; your sensitivity to someone else’s feelings can prompt you to water down your message. Instead of assuming people understand your position, ask them for feedback now. Stephen Covey wrote, “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.”

DR – October 13, 2017

Daily Recovery Readings for October 13, 2017:

Daily Reflection

UNREMITTING INVENTORIES

Continue to watch for selfishness, dishonesty, resentment, and fear. When these crop up, we ask God at once to remove them. We discuss them with someone immediately and make amends quickly if we have harmed anyone. Then we resolutely turn our thoughts to someone we can help.

ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 84

The immediate admission of wrong thoughts or actions is a tough task for most human beings, but for recovering alcoholics like me it is difficult because of my propensity toward ego, fear and pride. The freedom the A.A. program offers me becomes more abundant when, through unremitting inventories of myself, I admit, acknowledge and accept responsibility for my wrong-doing. It is possible then for me to grow into a deeper and better understanding of humility. My willingness to admit when the fault is mine facilitates the progression of my growth and helps me to become more understanding and helpful to others.

Big Book Quote

“Those of us who have spent much time in the world of spiritual make-believe have eventually seen the childishness of it. This dream world has been replaced by a great sense of purpose, accompanied by a growing consciousness of the power of God in our lives. We have come to believe He would like us to keep our heads in the clouds with Him, but that our feet ought to be firmly planted on earth. That is where our fellow travelers are, and that is where our work must be done. These are the realities for us. We have found nothing incompatible between a powerful spiritual experience and a life of sane and happy usefulness.”

Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Edition, The Family Afterward, pg. 130

Keep It Simple

Keep It Simple

Self-pity is one of the most dangerous forms of self-centeredness. It fogs our vision. —Kathy S.

Sometimes we get stuck in our own way of seeing things. We may feel as if everything that happens, happens to us or for us. If it rains, we may think about our ruined picnic and not about the dry fields that need the rain. We need to focus on the big picture. This keeps us from becoming self-centered. If it rains, we’ll gather indoors and be glad for the farmers. When we do our part, things go well. When we don’t we feel it. Every else feels it too.

Self pity keeps us from doing our part.

Prayer for the Day:
Higher Power, help me see myself as a big part of the picture. My job is just is to do my part.

Action for the Day:
Today, I’ll think about how I fit in with my Higher Power, my family, the place I work, my community. Do I do my part?

Daily Horoscope – Cancer

You’re concerned with the fundamentals today, like managing your money or aintaining your car. However, this orientation toward the material world is symbolic of a deeper need to take care of your inner world. Your spiritual pursuits might not be obvious to others now, but they are a significant factor in your current search for contentment. Nevertheless, the truth may remain elusive until you commit to continuing your quest for meaning. Nobel laureate Dr. Linus Pauling said, “Satisfaction of one’s curiosity is one of the greatest sources of happiness in life.”