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Monday Thoughts 6/22/2020

“The difficulty we have in accepting responsibility for our behavior lies in the desire to avoid the pain of the consequences of that behavior.”  ~~M. Scott Peck

“Being more aware creates responsibility.  What does responsibility mean? It means the ability to respond.  The more conscious you are in your ability to respond, the more creative you’ll be.”  ~~Deepak Chopra

“In the long run, we shape our lives, and we shape ourselves.  The process never ends until we die.  And the choices we make are ultimately our own responsibility.”  ~~Eleanor Roosevelt

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#13 I am responsible for myself and for my actions.

I am in charge of my mind, my thoughts and my life.

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 Many of us are still riding the wonderful wave of energy from our Envision It 2020 Virtual Conference.  This event was a remarkable success made possible through the responsibility of 4C women across the world, and as a nonprofit business.  This yearly event could have been cancelled like so many other events, yet WFS understood the need and value and asked for your help in making this event possible.  You responded with your abilities, whether it be time, talent and/or finances to make this event unfold.  It is a beautiful testament of the WFS Statements in action.  (Please note that replay of our Envision It 2020 Conference has been extended to June 28th! For those who registered.)

Statement #13, part of Level Six of the New Life Program, states in our WFS Program booklet, “The purpose of the New Life Program is self-acceptance and being responsible for ourselves and all that we do. By accepting responsibility, we can break away from unhealthy dependencies.”  In my own life, releasing blame laid a clear path into responsibility and freedom.  It took some time to understand that I was in fact, blaming others even when not stating so.  It was the awareness and observations of my responses to people or events in life that revealed my efforts to blame others.

Growing into responsibility is a life-long process; we continue to evolve on our journey of sobriety and recovery.  Supporting each other as we move through challenges and difficulties allows us to connect, love and respond in ever increasing ability and awareness.  How do you respond with your ability today?  How is this different from before your New Life?

Hugzzz

Karen
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Hi 4C Women,

I’ve said this over the years that I was the Queen of Blame.  I wore my crown proudly because nothing was ever my responsibility.  This is not to say that the actions and words of others did not wound me.  However, placing blame for my entire adult life on others, left me stuck and not providing room for emotional/personal growth.  There was a lot of pain growing up yet as I pulled the layers of pain away, I realized there were loving times as well.  In order to be the Queen of Blame, I didn’t allow the love to come into the picture, the “all or nothing” thinking.  That was my light bulb moment.  If I could focus on the love as much as I did the pain, perhaps I could finally learn to take responsibility for my life in the present, my well-being, responses rather than reactions and most importantly, speaking my voice, setting boundaries.  I recently read that if people respond angrily to your boundaries, it usually means they needed to be set.   As a child, I did not have power.  As an adult, I most certainly do.  Of course, that meant change!  I was resistant to change – again because that meant I would have to take responsibility for my well-being.  Anger and resentment were how I justified my blaming others long after the hurt happened.  I knew that in order to take responsibility, I had to accept a commitment to personal growth.  Once I made that decision, I found that I was eager to change, to be in charge of my life.  I even surprised myself!

I used a handout in one of my f2f meetings.  It described change in 3 behavioral styles: Victim, Survivor, Navigator.  I chose Navigator because it was similar to the WFS philosophy.

A Navigator:

Uses positive “self-talk

Establishes clear goals

Molds their sense of self-identity

Is proactive and works thought-out plans

Takes care of themselves

Acknowledges their fears – naming your fears rather than surrendering to vague dread, you can clarify the challenges and refute the unrealistic inaccurate fears

Navigator self-talk includes:

Reframing the situation (looking for a more positive view of situation)

Refuting self-limited statements (seek positive, accurate messages)

Avoiding “all or nothing” thinking

Praising self

Preparing for future events

This led me to questions from Karen in a previous message
Are you comfortable being in charge of your life?  Why?  Wny not?
Share an experience in which you used this Statement and were content with the results.
What does responsibility feel like in your New Life?

Bonded In being responsible for ourselves and our actions, Dee

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Monday Thoughts 3/23/2020

 

“The best way out is always through.”  ~~Robert Frost

‘Morning is an important time of day, because how you spend your morning can often tell you what kind of day you are going to have.”  ~~Lemony Snicket

“Of all the liars in the world, sometimes the worst are our own fears.”  ~~Rudyard Kipling
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#13 I am responsible for myself and for my actions.

I am in charge of my mind, my thoughts and my life.
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Every day the news changes which can feel quite overwhelming.  Uncertainty can play into fear, and fear can play into our states of balance and awareness.  Statement #13 in action can alleviate some of that imbalance by shifting our thoughts and actions into what we can do instead of what we cannot do.

In our WFS Program booklet, it states, “Through the New Life Program, we learn we are competent women, trusting our ability to make decisions.  It teaches us to be in charge of our minds, our thoughts and our lives.”  Each day we trust ourselves to remain sober and to make decisions in life that propel us forward.  We are 4C women after all!

Being able to put aside fear or panic allows for responsibility as well as adaptability.  Shifting into what we can do during this time of uncertainty can fill us with feelings of control in what seems uncontrollable.  As we continue to shift our lives with every new day, look for and embrace what enlivens you; maybe it is time spent with children, family or pets, or maybe it is contemplating the solitude of a passing spring afternoon. Right now, your life in sobriety and recovery is an act of love, and more love is what we can use right now.

Statement #13 Tool:  Begin and respond to your day with what you can control.  You have many things that are in your control, beginning with your thoughts.  Feeling anxious?  Examine your thoughts and respond with care.  It’s quite easy to feel overwhelmed right now when watching the news so make sure you disconnect from the shows and plug into your mind.  Take a moment to sit by a window and focus on nature.  If you are able, sit outside and turn your face to the sun.  Breathe.  Be.  Reach out by adapting to virtual connections.  Together we will overcome!

Hugzzz

Karen
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Hi 4C Women,

So many thoughts going through my mind as I read Karen’s words of encouragement.  One thing I know is that I am grateful for my sobriety.  Mostly I am grateful that I have learned to make major changes through applying the 13 Statements over the years and while I am currently experiencing fear and some anxiety, I am also feeling hopeful.

This is a time of change when Statement #13 implores us to acknowledge and accept that we are in charge of our minds, thoughts, and lives.  There is fear in the world today and perhaps for the first time in a long while, we are not alone in this experience.  It is a collective feeling.  For me, that is the good news.  I don’t need to hide my fear, be silent about it.  The benefit is that when fear isn’t hidden, it creates an atmosphere of clarity in facing our challenges and allows for each of us to extend our caring, compassion and much needed support and reassurance to those around us as we understand these feelings from the depth of our hearts.  This shared spoken fear keeps our feelings authentic and that is a gift that supports us emotionally and spiritually.

It is said that people usually adapt one of 3 behavioral styles during times of change:  Victim, Survivor, Navigator.  I hope to be a Survivor and Navigator, finding my strengths, maintaining my sobriety, avoiding all or nothing thinking, being proactive in taking care of myself while still being available to those in need as I am able.

If you are feeling vulnerable, putting your recovery at risk, I strongly encourage you to seek help asap.  You are not alone.  Your work thus far means something – it means that you value yourself, you are worthy and deserving.  There are many coping tools that can help during this time.  Please reach out to a member of your group, the online community or a close, trusted friend or partner. Keep aware of your self-talk.  If you hear negative thoughts tumbling around in your mind, perhaps your positive self-talk can be that your sobriety/recovery is your guide in making healthy choices, that you are willing to keep moving forward even when it’s feeling so challenging, that you will seek help and provide help to others if you are able.  In other words, acknowledge your feelings, create a plan to work through them, reach out if you need support, make your hard earned sobriety/recovery a priority and perhaps write a letter to yourself as to what you have done so far in support of your sobriety, how much positive change has taken place and why it is of utmost importance to remain the 4C woman you have created through WFS, hard work, determination, courage and what a resilient woman you are because of it!

 

Dear ________________ (your name),

I am worthy and deserving of my sobriety/recovery because:

These are the actions I will take if I feel my recovery is at risk:

 Inline image

 (your name)

 

 

Bonded in being in charge and supporting each other with care and compassion, Dee

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Monday Thoughts 12/23/2019

“Often our thoughts are formed by past experiences, actions, and attitudes inherited from family and society.  By understanding our thoughts, we can accept responsibility for our actions.  We recognize we have options and choices.”  ~~ WFS Program booklet

“We all make mistakes, have struggles, and even regret things in our past.  But you are not your mistakes, you are not your struggles, and you are here NOW with the power to shape your day and your future.”  ~~Steve Maraboli

“All negativity is caused by an accumulation of psychological time and denial of the present.  Unease, anxiety, tension, stress, worry—all forms of fear—are caused by too much future, and not enough presence.  Guilt, regret, resentment, grievances, sadness, bitterness, and all forms of non-forgiveness are caused by too much past, and not enough presence.”  ~~Eckhart Tolle

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#13 I am responsible for myself and for my actions.

I am in charge of my mind, my thoughts and my life.

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As the holidays approach this week, I would like to share a post from our beloved Nancy Cross:

 

The Holiday Season usually brings a busy travel season. I do hope none of you have booked (or are planning to book!) this trip.

The Guilt Trip

I had not really planned on taking a trip this time of year, and yet I found myself packing rather hurriedly. This trip was going to be unpleasant and I knew in advance that no real good would come of it. I’m talking about my annual “Guilt Trip.”

I got tickets to fly there on “Wish I Had” airlines. It was an extremely short flight. I got my baggage, which I could not check. I chose to carry it myself all the way. It was weighted down with a thousand memories of what might have been.
No one greeted me as I entered the terminal to the “Regret City” International Airport. I say international because people from all over the world come to this dismal town. As I checked into the “Last Resort” Hotel, I noticed that they would be hosting the year’s most important event, the “Annual Pity Party.” I wasn’t going to miss that great social occasion. Many of the town’s leading citizens would be there.

First, there would be the Done family, you know … Should Have, Would Have and Could Have. Then came the I Had family. You probably know old Wish and his clan. Of course, the Opportunities would be present, Missed and Lost. The biggest family would be the Yesterdays. There are far too many of them to count, but each one would have a very sad story to share. Then Shattered Dreams would surely make an appearance. And It’s Their Fault would regale us with stories (excuses) about how things had failed in his life, and each story would be loudly applauded by Don’t Blame ME} and I Couldn’t Help It.

Well, to make a long story short, I went to this depressing party knowing that there would be no real benefit in doing’ so. And, as usual, I became very depressed. But as I thought about all of the stories of failures brought back from the past, it occurred to me that all of this trip and subsequent “pity party” could be canceled by ME! I started to truly realize that I did not have to be there. I didn’t have to be depressed. One thing kepi going through my mind, I CAN’T CHANGE YESTERDAY, BUT I DO HAVE THE POWER TO MAKE TODAY A WONDERFUL DAY. I can be happy, joyous, fulfilled, encouraged, as well as encouraging.

Knowing this, I left the “City of Regret” immediately and left no forwarding address. Am I sorry for mistakes I’ve made in the past? YES! But there is no physical way to undo them. So, if you’re planning a trip back to the City of Regret, please cancel all your reservations now! Instead, take a trip to a place called “Starting Again.” I liked it so much that I have now taken up permanent residence there. My neighbors, the I Forgive Myself’s and the New Starts are so very helpful. By the way, you don’t have to carry around heavy baggage, because the load is lifted from your shoulders upon arrival.

If you can find it, please look me up. I live on “I Can Do It” Street. – Meg S.

Statement 13·1 am responsible for myself and for my actions.
I am in charge of MY mind, MY thoughts, and MY life.

EnJOY! Nancy

 

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Hi 4C Women,

I wrote my part of this message back in 2013 and when I looked at it again, I am struck by the fact that this message still speaks volumes to me.  With so many planning trips during the holiday season, this message is one of caution to make sure your travel plans do not include any place described in the Guilt Trip but creating plans to be in the city of Starting Again filled with Hope.

2013: Wow, did that trip sound way too familiar to me! I lived and visited all of those places way too often, especially the “It’s Their Fault” area of town. Thank goodness for WFS and therapy that helped me unload that useless baggage and move into the town of “Starting Again.” It is certainly a more pleasant place to reside and while I may visit the “City of Regret” every once in a while, (I’m only human), it will never be my permanent residence. Fortunately, my brief visits to the “City of Regret” actually helps me to once again realize how much harm was caused by living there and that healing from the past is where I need to be. Regrets can be a teaching tool rather than a beating myself up tool because the past CANNOT be changed and I refuse to victimize myself over and over again by packing those bags of guilt until they fall over on me. Working on positive change is the baggage I pack to stay in my new town of “Starting Again.” What’s in your baggage? Where are you residing today? What’s your plan to move from the “City of Regret” to the town of “Starting Again”?

Bonded in creating our own journey, your 4C Sister