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Post Info TOPIC: Courage to Change, May 13

~*Service Worker*~

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Courage to Change, May 13

In today's reading, the author shares about how much easier they find it to make decisions with the AlAnon program. Prior to program, the author struggled to make decisions because of obsessive thinking about "suffering the consequences". Now, the author instead considers "enjoying the consequences". They make choices more conscientiously, doing whatever footwork seems necessary, and then turns the results over to their Higher Power. For a long time, the author avoided making decisions because they were afraid they wouldn't land on the magical "right choice". Despite a certainty that there was a right choice that would get them what they wanted, the author never could seem to identify that right choice. Today, the author knows that choosing not to decide IS to decide. Making decisions can be very liberating, and once the author has made a decision, they can await the consequences of that decision with excitement and hope instead of fear and dread. 

Today's Reminder: Today I will have faith in my ability to act. When the times seems right, I will make the best choice I can and allow myself to enjoy the results. 

Today's Quote: "Sometimes our enthusiasm for change depends on our willingness to take a chance on tomorrow by risking what we have today." Living with Sobriety


Today's reading always brings me back to a significant Al-Anon meeting I had early on in my Al-Anon journey. I was at a face-to-face meeting, and my AW had totaled our car, hadn't stopped drinking, and we were waiting for a court date. I was not sure whether I wanted to stay in the relationship, and I was feeling a lot of pressure to make a choice right away. In chatting after the meeting, one of the old-timers said, "you know, deciding not to decide yet is a decision too." Suddenly, I felt that I had permission to take my time with the decision. I didn't have to decide right away, I was not on a pre-established timeline, and I could take it day-by-day. I might decide to stay today, but that didn't mean that I was committing to stay tomorrow as well. 

I Felt so much freedom with this perspective. It made my thinking more flexible, and to be honest, I'm still making this decision day-by-day, five years later. It is a good reminder to me that I do not have to accept unacceptable behavior, and that I have permission to make choices that are good for me, in the future as well, no matter what I decide today. 

I'm excited to have now a digital cope of C2C!!!! AW purchased it for me, because neither of us have access to our print copies at the moment - they are both locked in our perspective offices. My best guess is that I won't be back before July 1, and maybe not then. But I'm thankful that I can work remotely, and although I'm facing furloughs this year, I haven't been laid off. I hope that you are staying well and taking good care of yourself.  



If you are depressed, you are living in the past. If you are anxious, you are living in the future. If you are at peace, you are living in the present. - Lao Tzu

~*Service Worker*~

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{{{Skorpi}}}. Thank you so much for your service and what a relevant reading and share for me today. Making a decision not to decide, is a decision. That is just pure brilliance. And I as well, live with this concept ODAT. When I came to program almost 7 years ago, one of my major obsessions was what to do with my marriage. I wanted answers and I wanted them NOW. I guess Im still in the marriage so I sort of have made a decision. One of the gifts Betty gave me was a constant reminder that I have choices, and yes, what I choose today may not be what I choose tomorrow. With chaos, uncertainty, and disappointment, I have come to experience a sense of freedom. That helps me achieve serenity and peace most of the days. Grateful member, Lyne



~*Service Worker*~

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Posts: 2627

Thanks skorpi for you service and to all sharers on this topic. Early in my program decision making was so difficult for me. I was in the midst of chaos and felt I couldn't take one more thing going wrong. I knew what to expect with the familiar insanity but what if I took a risk, made a decision and it compounded my problems. I lacked courage, faith in a loving higher power and trust in myself. I took baby steps then, put my toe in the water to test my ability to make a decision and sit with the uncomfortable feelings of awaiting outcomes. I thought for sure something would go wrong. Sometimes it did but often it didn't. 

I think the most important lesson I have learned is that any decision that is in front of me, someone else has made before me. I can do my homework a bit, research resources, contact others for help, weigh my options. If I'm contemplating a decision, I can find courage by having done this footwork. What I've learned aside from the fact that other before me have made similiar decisions is that there are always solutions to failed attempts. Any mistakes I make someone else has made because we are all human. No one is terminally uniques "perfect." Better to make mistakes and keep moving forward than limit my life, my experiences and possible growth. The growing pains of failure have actually brought a lot of rewards. I've learned to ask for help, allowed myself to be teachable by others who have helped me toward workable solutions and helped me to build trust and confidence in myself and others as well as my hp. From that place, I have been able to go forward making more and more decisions knowing that there are a lot of variables in that process and adjustments can always be made. This has taken the fear out of making choices.

There is a little tool I made up for myself and I like to use to separate out real fear as opposed to false evidence when I don't feel wholly confident about a decision that is in front of me. It's basically an inventory that weighs possibilities for outcomes. Logically, I know I can't ascertain any outcome. Only my higher power knows what the outcome will be. But based on what I know to this point, based on self knowledge gained from Alanon; I may list gains and losses from making a particular decision. I like to expand out on those with next actions if those should occur. If this happens, what can you do? It's been a good way for me to gauge where I am at with the "fear factor." If I root something out that has me feeling incredibly fearful, I know this something to explore further with my hp and others. Mainly, to gain more day to day serenity.

There is no need to push myself to take any particular action. Inaction can be the right decision until I feel I have more information and more comfort in going forward. This is an inside job program and a gentle program. I can continue to use lesson learned and have reasonably content life.  ((hugs)) TT


Faith unsticks fear.

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