“You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today.”
“Adulthood is like the vet, and we’re all dogs that were excited for the ride until we realized where we’re going.”
“No one else is going to build the life you want for you. No one else will even be able to completely understand it. The most amazing souls will show up to cheer you along the way, but this is your game. Make a pact to be in it with yourself for the long haul, as your own supportive friend at every step along the way.”
#13 I am responsible for myself and for my actions.
I am in charge of my mind, my thoughts and my life.
Sobriety and Statement #13 in action are a combination that paves the way for long-term recovery. Our founder, Jean Kirkpatrick, Ph.D., understood her need for a different kind of recovery program, and when she couldn’t find it, she constructed it. Jean created the New Life she wanted by taking responsibility for her life, thereby giving us the opportunity for a sober New Life as well.
In early sobriety, the concept of responsibility was frightening. I really didn’t understand what it meant, and my healing brain tried to figure it out. Inside, I thought responsibility meant solving problems for everyone and being in two different places at a time. Kind of like my parents. Over time, I realized that it meant responding with my ability. It was the beginning of learning to trust myself to make decisions, redirect thoughts, and create a life that matched my heart. Of course, there were still many unknowns, but I was learning to challenge myself and really believe in myself.
Anytime we overcome a craving or extinguish a trigger, we are saying YES to ourselves and putting action into Statement #13. Responding to a thought that takes us further away from a goal by redirecting or challenging it, is action into this empowering Statement. Each day this week, examine how you responded and overcame something challenging. How did it feel? What did you learn about yourself? What would you like to create in your life? What small action can you take this week towards that?
Hi 4C Women,
I laughed out loud at the quote about being a dog, all excited for the ride, until we realized where we were going. After my divorce, I was initially terrified to be responsible for everything after 27 years of marriage, yet I was also excited to be making my own choices, to be in charge. All these years later, I am grateful to have learned a ton of life lessons, survived several mistakes that I was sure I wouldn’t, and still, every once in a while, I do some wishful thinking about having someone take over my responsibilities for perhaps a week to give me a break. There is so much to learn and unlearn. I learned that Superwoman does not exist in real life and unlearned that I have to do it all and perfectly. I also realize that when I want someone to take over for a brief time, I am just feeling overwhelmed. It is not a judgment on my abilities, it is a recognition of needing a breather and asking for input or support, knowing that the final responsibility and decision is mine.
Karen was absolutely right about “trust.” It took quite a while for me to trust my decision-making and problem-solving skills. Working through my pain, healing from my past, and learning to ask for help all created trust in me. I trusted myself! I finally chose courage over comfort. It was comfortable to have others tell me what would be the best choice for me, to decide what to do, and where to go. One day I realized that I was allowing fear to control my life, mostly fear of making mistakes in my choices which is why I either didn’t make a decision or relied on others to do it for me. That was my comfort zone. If their choice was wrong, I wore my “blame them” crown. It fit so well. However, with WFS I learned that fear took away the courage I needed to be in charge of my life. While I recognized that fear is a natural response, I also learned to not deny my feelings but find a way to uncover and discover where they were coming from. From that came the tools I needed to problem-solve and be confident.
Even mistakes are powerful life lessons, not a deterrent. I love that WFS encourages us to be authentic. My fear was very real to me yet I needed to reflect with compassion to understand its roots. I did discover them and it completely changed my thought pattern. The inner critic that said I was stupid was from the past, from some who are no longer here or in my life. Yet I gave them room to rent in my mind. Well, their lease was up and I am now the sole owner!
Have you been able to uncover and discover your fears that might be holding you back from practicing and living Statement #13?
In doing so, how has that changed your approach to being in charge of your mind, thoughts, and life as far as cravings, triggers, and decision-making?
How do you say yes to you? I love Karen’s description of saying no to a craving or a trigger is saying yes to you.
Having plans has always been a part of WFS. If Plan A doesn’t work, go on to Plan B, Plan C. It’s all part of learning to be in charge of our actions as best as we can. Learning what does and does not work for us individually. So, if you are triggered or your inner critic is screaming false messages in your ear, what plans do you have to live Statement #13 for well-being and recovery?
Bonded in learning and discovering our needs to be in charge of our actions, and our life, Dee
WFS is proud to announce the start of the LGBTQ+ Affinity Group meeting!
Thursday, September 29 at 12pm ET
Please email [email protected] with questions and to obtain the exact location of the meeting.