Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Monday's Message ~ Statement #12




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“Today you are you!  That is truer than true!  There is no one alive who is you-er than you!”  -Dr. Seuss 

“Don’t ask what the world needs.  Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it.  Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.”  -Howard Thurman 

“Trust yourself.  Create the kind of self that you will be happy to live with all your life.  Make the most of yourself by fanning the tiny, inner sparks of possibility into flames of achievement.”  -Golda Meir

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Statement #12, “I am a competent woman and have much to give life.”
This is what I am and I shall know it always.
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+ Karen’s Perspective +
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        Right now on the WFS catalog site (wfscatalog.org) you will find four volumes of “A New Life Journey” written by yours truly.  How these little gems came about was not something that I had actually planned, instead these volumes were born from simply believing in what I was doing.
        Alcohol has a way of not only invading but wreaking havoc to self-esteem.  I can recall times when I would quit something before I had even started, including sobriety.  I felt incapable, incompetent and had given up hope for a better life; my mind swirling with inadequacies.  WFS and Statement #12 provide a pathway to overcoming these deep feelings of lack.
        Simply uttering “I am a competent woman” during periods of self-doubt, I am able to challenge my mind and redirect my thoughts.  This takes daily practice.  From writing a few positive words about an experience to being able to purchase four different volumes that solely benefit WFS, I can say with continuing clarity, “I am a competent woman and have much to give life!”
Every day in every way I release self-doubt.
Hugzzz, Karen

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+  Member Insights  +
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Hi 4C Women,
        Karen’s writings are encouraging and inspiring.  I have bought them for myself and as gifts for others.  I consider it part of my support system.  I am so glad she mentioned it in this message because she IS a competent woman and has given much to all of us.
        Believing in ourselves, loving the person we have and are becoming, is the key to authentic change that is so important in obtaining and sustaining our recovery.  It was a difficult transition for me as I had always doubted myself and this was even more evident a year after I quit drinking.  I had been unhappily married for a long time and it wasn’t until I quit drinking and could no longer numb my feelings that I got the courage to ask for a divorce.  We had talked about separating in the recent years but never followed through for one reason or another.  I was terrified of being on my own, the fear of the unknown, and that was a huge red flag that I still had a lot of work to do.  As Karen said, I simply had to believe in what I was doing, believe in myself.  It’s been 23 years as of January 24, 1994, and I am sometimes astounded when I think back to the scared, unsure woman that made that life-changing decision.  Sobriety was the biggest life-changer, yet I recognized through WFS and therapy that it’s more than not drinking or using drugs that creates competency, it’s the willingness to sit and walk through the pain of change to reach the joy of having much to give life.

·         What are the major life decisions you have made or need to make?
·         What was/is the greatest fear in taking action?
·         If you have worked through the pain and challenge of life-changing decisions, what have you learned about yourself?

        Many times, we have regrets about our decisions.  That happens to everyone, yet there is always a lesson to be learned about ourselves upon reflection.  Part of being bonded on this journey is sharing those insights in order to encourage others, to give them hope that while change is difficult, it is also rewarding.
        Considering the questions above might clarify why certain choices were made and to forgive ourselves if we have made a mistake.  Without forgiveness, we live in regret that only keeps us chained to a past that cannot be changed.  Forgiveness is a choice as well.
        We are all competent women and have much to give life, to give and learn from others with mistakes made and successes as well.  It’s the bond that supports us as we continue to learn, let go, move on and change in a powerful, positive way.  --WFS Member
_____________________________________________________________________
© Women for Sobriety, Inc. | PO Box 618, Quakertown PA 18951
Email: contact@womenforsobriety.org | Ph: 215-536-8026 | Fax: 215-538-9026
Join our Email Service by clicking HERE or text your email address to WFSORG at 22828.
Daily Inspirations on Twitter: @WFS4C | Check out the WFS Blog: http://wfsorg.blogspot.com
When you shop at smile.amazon.com, Amazon donates to Women for Sobriety.
PayPal Giving Fund: 100% of your donation reaches WFS and contributes to our mission.
 
DONATE NOW ~ Your Donations Help Support WFS’s Services. Thank you!

Monday, February 27, 2017

New Email Service!



Spring is in the air in Pennsylvania and
we feel it’s time for a fresh start!
 
Women for Sobriety has a new email service
and we hope you’ll want to join in
on the news, updates and inspiring messages!
 
Join our Email Service by clicking HERE or…

 

_____________________________________________________________________
© WFS Inc. * Women for Sobriety, Inc., PO Box 618, Quakertown PA 18951
Email: contact@womenforsobriety.org  *  Ph: 215-536-8026  *  Fax: 215-538-9026
Join our Email Service by clicking HERE or text your email address to WFSORG at 22828.
Daily Inspirations on Twitter: @WFS4C  *  Check out the WFS Blog: http://wfsorg.blogspot.com
When you shop at smile.amazon.com, Amazon donates to Women for Sobriety.
PayPal Giving Fund: 100% of your donation reaches WFS and contributes to our mission.
 
DONATE NOW ~ Your Donations Help Support WFS’s Services ~ Thank you!

Monday, February 20, 2017

Monday's Message ~ Statement #8


“Turn your wounds into wisdom.”

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“Be that self which one truly is.”  -Soren Kierkegaard
 
“All work can be holy – a pathway to wholeness, integration, and authenticity.  It is not the task itself but the depth, presence, care and awareness that you bring to the task.”  -Eric Klein
 
“Turn your wounds into wisdom.”  -Oprah

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Statement #8, “The fundamental object of life is emotional and spiritual growth.”
Daily I put my life into a proper order, knowing which are the priorities.
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+ Karen’s Perspective +
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        Emotional growth?  Spiritual growth?  What is it?  How do I get there?  How will I know?  These are some of the questions that I asked myself when I first began to practice Statement #8.  Initially, I focused on figuring out priorities in my life; this seemed easier to me than any kind of spiritual or emotional work.  Some early priorities were to simply make my bed in the morning or floss my teeth.  I needed to start with little stuff, stuff that seemed insignificant, but I’ve since learned that everything adds up to the whole.
        In the past, my priority was alcohol.  I always knew how much I had in the fridge and when to get more.  This information was, for the most part, just under the surface of everything I did.  I sought out functions that included alcohol and dismissed those that didn’t.  Growth of any kind was absent, unless you count negative growth, then I was accelerating wildly away from any state of balance.
        Today, sobriety and Statement #8 in action help to bring balance to life and to discover authenticity.  Who I am today is different than one day ago, one year ago, or one decade ago.  Additionally, much of what I learned in the past belonged to another; their views, their beliefs, their values.  I now have choices.  Statement #8 provides the path, while I grow forward, uncovering and discovering.  Hugzzz, Karen 

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+  Member Insights  +
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Hi 4C Women,
        It’s been said that when we experience a traumatic event as a child, teen or young adult, that is the age we stop growing emotionally.  When I began therapy, I learned that I stopped growing emotionally at age 16.  I had a lot of catching up to do!
        I am always amazed at the human spirit, the willing spirit, the person who decides life can be different and that it is through the desire to change, to be in charge of one’s life that this awakening takes hold.  It is then that the challenging, rewarding work of emotional and spiritual growth begins.
        When reflecting on your life, think about the enormous challenges you faced without insight, support or encouragement!  You coped by using drugs or alcohol to numb, hide, run away and nothing changed except you made it through, remaining the same person.  Then you made the decision that this was not the life you wanted, the life you deserved and slowly the inside changes began to take place - this is emotional and spiritual growth in action.
        I heard a woman share that when it comes to loss (and that includes our so-called friend alcohol/drugs), we don’t move on, we “go” on.  I knew that I wanted to go on after I stopped drinking, not just move on to the next situation and resolve it the same unhealthy way.  It wasn’t about just not drinking but feeling differently, behaving differently.  I needed to learn how to respond in a way that created change in me, in my relationships, in a better outcome.  It was hard work to let go of the past and learn from it, to seek new and different solutions to old recurring problems so they were no longer current problems, to make healthier decisions and start the wonderful, self-loving emotional and spiritual growth that would feed my soul.
        How are you feeding your spirit and soul?  Is it starving for attention?  Is it begging to be filled with love, joy, and stability through the change of emotional and spiritual growth?  WFS, through its 13 Statements, groups and online Forum can be the guiding force to provide the support and encouragement needed to make these inside changes.  You are in charge of making that decision.  --WFS Member
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© WFS Inc. * Women for Sobriety, Inc., PO Box 618, Quakertown PA 18951
Email: contact@womenforsobriety.org  *  Ph: 215-536-8026  *  Fax: 215-538-9026
Daily Inspirations on Twitter: @WFS4C  *  Check out the WFS Blog: http://wfsorg.blogspot.com
When you shop at smile.amazon.com, Amazon donates to Women for Sobriety.
PayPal Giving Fund: 100% of your donation reaches WFS and contributes to our mission. 

DONATE NOW ~ Your Donations Help Support WFS’s Services ~ Thank you!

Thursday, February 16, 2017

February 2017 Reflections

Excerpts from the February “Reflections For Growth” Booklet by Jean Kirkpatrick, Ph.D. 

Self-Expression
February 1
    Probably every one of us has days when we feel so totally without identification that we could fade into the woodwork and no one would notice.
     Why do we have these days when we feel so insignificant, so “nothing”?  More importantly, how can we change them?
    Today I will make an effort to express myself to others in a clear and definitive way.  I will understand my own importance and express it.
Worry
February 9
    Have you ever heard someone say, “I don’t know what’s wrong with me.  All I do is wrong!”
    We do not have to worry.  We may think that we do, that it is necessary, but that simply is not true.
    We can refuse to worry.  We are not the victims of our thoughts but, rather, we perpetrate them.
    Today I refuse to worry – today and everyday hereafter.
Involvement
February 19
    Life is with us every day but we may not be involved in it.  We might have chosen to let life carry us along on waves of whatever comes along.
     Is that how you see life?
    Truly, this is not living.  Life is for us to be involved with each other, with life itself.
    Today I will live fully; I will be involved.
Adjustments
February 24
    Sobriety – what a marvelous adjustment!
    But that adjustment to sobriety is not one that is easy to make.  There are many degrees in between, various stages to which we must gradually adjust as we move forward and upward to that time of our life when we have completely – and happily – adjusted to our new life of sobriety.
    Today I will be aware of knowing that major adjustments do not happen all at one time.
Happiness
February 29
    Most persons call happiness that ephemeral condition of total and euphoric joy.
    But is happiness always a condition of ecstasy?  I think not.
    Happiness is often times not identified, for we fail to acknowledge it.  Happiness is subtle enough sometimes that we miss knowing we are happy.  Unless sadness, we can be happy and not know it.
    Today I will try to be aware of this peaceful happiness in my life.

[Thank you, “EmbraceLife”, for choosing this month’s reflections!]

Women for Sobriety’s Motto

“We are Capable and Competent, Caring and Compassionate, always willing to help another; bonded together in overcoming our addictions.”
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© WFS Inc. * Women for Sobriety, Inc., PO Box 618, Quakertown PA 18951
Email: contact@womenforsobriety.org  *  Ph: 215-536-8026  *  Fax: 215-538-9026
Daily Inspirations on Twitter: @WFS4C  *  Check out the WFS Blog: http://wfsorg.blogspot.com
When you shop at smile.amazon.com, Amazon donates to Women for Sobriety.
PayPal Giving Fund: 100% of your donation reaches WFS and contributes to our mission.

DONATE NOW ~ Your Donations Help Support WFS’s Services ~ Thank you!

Monday, February 13, 2017

Happy Valentine's Day!



By Susie “Sooz”
[Notes from Saturday night’s Chat.] 

“It is an absolute certainty that no one can know his own beauty or perceive a sense of his own worth until it has been reflected back to him in the mirror of another loving, caring human being.” – John Joseph Powell
 
      When I was a little girl, my paternal grandmother taught me about unconditional love.  Had she not been in my life, I would never have had the lesson.  I adored her.  My mother could not stand her.  What I know now is that my grandmother was a 4C woman; she was caring and compassionate, capable and competent, and so much more.  She was a natural at so many things; she cooked, she gardened, she sewed, she had a close circle of friends, she was resilient and she was not afraid of life.  She laughed at herself, and I believe that she genuinely loved life.
      I spent an entire summer with my grandmother when I was seven.  It was the happiest summer of my childhood.  I saw love in my grandmother’s eyes when she smiled at me.  That love anchors me still.  We lost her to breast cancer when I was twelve and a light went out in my soul.  But over time, I learned to rekindle that light by reliving memories from that summer and being grateful for the many gifts of spirit that she gave me.  She was my guiding light and I miss her to this day.
      I believe that love is a kind of generosity, a reaching out to others even when to do so is not always easy.  Love is stepping outside yourself to see the other person and understand that what they need may be something YOU have needed, and you know how it felt when you never received it, and you know how it felt when you did.  Here are some examples: 

·  Love is an afternoon of doing what you want when I’d sooner be doing what I want. 

·  Love is eating burnt toast and lumpy gravy with a smile. 

·  Love is refusing to bring up the past, even if doing so would be a slam dunk to prove your point. 

·  Love is a gentle hand wiping away my tears. 

·  Love is the warm hug that extinguishes an argument. 

·  Love is a humbly-uttered apology, even if not at fault. 

·  In other words, love is one heart being sensitive to that of another.

·  Love is easy to recognize but so hard to define.

Question:  What is love to you? 
 
 

“Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” – Rumi

 

Here is what one WFS sister had to say on the subject of Love:

      “The answers I’ve been searching for became known to me when I concentrate less on my problems and more on the gift of love I can give to others I meet today.  Solutions to my problems are seldom found in my head; they burst forth from my heart.  I am receptive to my heart when I reach out to others with love.
      It is a simple thing asked of me – to love others.  Unconditional love breaks down the walls and barriers to my achievements and to others.  Loving frees me to enjoy life.
      The beauty of a loving posture is that it calls forth love in response.  The more love I give away, the more I receive.”  (From A Year of Reflections, 2001, Vol. 3) 

“My primary relationship is with myself: all others are mirrors of it.  As I learn to love myself, I automatically receive the love and appreciation that I desire from others.  If I am committed to myself and to living my truth, I will attract others with equal commitment.  My willingness to be intimate with my own deep feelings creates the space for intimacy with another.”Shakti Gawain 

      So what happens when we begin to see ourselves through the eyes of others who love us?  What happens when we begin (gasp!) to LOVE OURSELVES?  And how do we learn to do that?
      Loving yourself is about enjoying your life, trusting your own feelings, taking chances, finding happiness, cherishing the memories, and learning from the past.  Sometimes you have to stop worrying, wondering, and doubting.  Have faith that things will work out, maybe not exactly how you planned, but just how it’s meant to be.
      I want to help you get into the habit of consciously being kind to yourself.  I know how easy it is to do the opposite.  When we were still drinking, our focus was on beating ourselves up, looking for reasons to feel bad about ourselves, overlooking the good we had in favor of what we saw as our faults and shortcomings.
      Seeing ourselves through the eyes of disapproval feels lousy, so we usually didn’t feel very good about our life.  Feeling unlovable kept us from attracting love.  It kept us unhappy and stuck in door-mat mode, pleasing others at our expense.  When we don’t treat ourselves with love, others don’t either.  Plus, people-pleasers think they’re being loving when they satisfy other people’s needs, but they’re not.  They do it to feel more secure, and the people they attract are happy to use them.  That can really prevent attracting loving people into your world!
      Seeing yourself through the eyes of self-love creates a wonderful vibration that attracts loving people and feelings to you.  When you begin to love yourself, you will be amazed at how different the world looks.  You will come to understand that love attracts more love.  Disdain attracts more disdain.
      You are powerful when you believe in yourself – when you know that you are capable of anything you put your mind to.  You are beautiful when your strength and determination shines as you follow your own path – when you aren’t disheveled by the obstacles along the way.  You are unstoppable when you let your mistakes educate you, as your confidence builds from experiences – when you know you can fall down, pick yourself up, and move forward.
      If you struggle with self-love, take some time and start writing down things that you are good at, things you like about yourself, nice things that others have said about you, etc.  This is a very important step toward healing and developing a better image of yourself.  Then go to a trusted friend or family member or WFS sister and ask them to write down the positive and good things they see in you.  Don’t argue with them!  Simply thank them, and sometime later in the week, revisit that list and begin telling yourself these new truths about you.
      The trick will be whether you start believing them or not.  This will be your choice.  We all have self-worth and dignity.  We all need to love who we are and celebrate that which is good in us.
      Every day remind yourself of one thing that is good about you and then run with it.  Perhaps pair it with one of the 13 Statements.  Let’s all take some time to reflect on this and begin realizing the truth about how beautiful we are and how much we bring to this life. 

“Something inside you emerges – an innate, indwelling peace, stillness, aliveness.  It is the unconditioned, who you are in your essence.  It is what you had been looking for in the love object.  It is yourself.”  - Eckhart Tolle

CLOSING: 

“May there be kindness in your gaze when you look within.  May you take time to celebrate the quiet miracles that seek no attention.  May you experience each day as a sacred gift woven around the heart of wonder.” – John O’Donohue
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© WFS Inc. * Women for Sobriety, Inc., PO Box 618, Quakertown PA 18951
Email: contact@womenforsobriety.org  *  Ph: 215-536-8026  *  Fax: 215-538-9026
Daily Inspirations on Twitter: @WFS4C  *  Check out the WFS Blog: http://wfsorg.blogspot.com
DONATE NOW ~ Your Donations Help Support WFS’s Services ~ Thank you!