I will go to any length to learn the various ways to escape from my addictions. I intend to be a free person today, just for today. Tomorrow isn’t here yet.
Bill W., co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous tells us ” Remember, it was agreed at the beginning we would go to any lengths for victory over depression (Editor substituted depression for alcohol). (1)
CLARIFICATION OF THOUGHT
I believe that I am well equipped do all in my power to free myself from sadness. In fact, I know that the more I begin to really feel and not run away from my sadness, or my anxiety, that my self esteem begins to rise and I begin to feel better and more hopeful. I am in touch that the more I follow my program, the more my days are getting better and filled with happiness. My bad days are diminishing. I am having more good days than bad days. I am doing all in my power, today, to take all the avenues open to me for my own recovery.
MY victory over depression is not an end in itself. I am beginning to believe that I am no longer a slave of this interminable feeling of helplessness. The more I feel I have mastery over the feelings of helplessness, the more hope I have.”
God, of our understanding, help us discover all the ways we can use to be a suitable instrument for helping our fellow sufferer’s of depression begin to feel better.” (Personal comments)
SOURCE: Copyright (c) Higher Thoughts for Down Days: 365 daily thoughts and meditations for members of 12 Step fellowship groups. (Hugh Smith Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. KY. Pages 134-135.)
A HIGHER THOUGHT FOR YOUR DAY
“I’m sure many sufferer’s could find a lot of comfort and support by coming into a group as I’ve done, to help beat the terrible loneliness which is felt by many and who find lasting friendship with lovely people.”
CLARIFICATION OF THOUGHT
In the group, I established myself and got some positive feednback from others who watched me grow and have seen the genuine changes I make personally. I am gradually throwing off my personal way with sadness. The real support comes when I begin to learn that members of the group have the same problem that I have. That helps me trust others with the story of my life. These people are the ones who want to hear my story of how depression cost me my life. Now, my life is freeing me from my need to sad myself.
I feel more able to attach myself to the group now that I know that they are struggling with the same depression that I struggle with. I no longer have to fight this battle on my own.
MEDITATION AND BEING MINDFUL OF A HIGHER POWER
God, you are our rock and our refuge, on you I place my trust. We know and believe, easier now than before, that God has something good in store for me today. (Personal comment).
SOURCE: Higher thoughts for down days: 365 daily thoughts and meditations for members of 12 Step fellowship groups. Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. April 26. Pages 84-85.
*HOME STUDY PROGRAM, is an individual approach to a STEP study program when no Depressed Anonymous group program is available in one’s community. The participant is helped in working the steps by utilizing the help of a sponsor. The sponsor leads the individual through all the steps using the Depressed Anonymous Manual, 3rd edition as well as coordinating this work with the Depressed Anonymous Workbook. By means of emails the sponsor and participant communicate with each other on a regular basis.
For more information in how to set up this HOME STUDY program please click onto the Depressed Anonymous Publications Bookstore. Or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for how you can be part of this individualized study.
The Home Study material can be ordered online.
In Man’s Search for Meaning, Viktor Frankl describes how hope is a key to survival and the heart amid the horrors of a concentration camp. The prisoner who was able to find meeting – in nature, in the memory of a loved one, and a generous act – would more likely not to give up. When we hope, in whatever circumstance, the future we long for comes closer, an experience of mind and heart that sustains us now and impels us forward.
Thomas Aquinas named hope as a theological virtue. It is a gift from God that we receive now, fueling our journey to a fuller union with God. Hope is the way God encourages us. It stirs up memory of God’s abiding faithfulness. Hope expands our vision beyond the immediate horizon. It breaks open our heart to dispel fear. It stokes our imagination to realize unexpected opportunities. Hope whispers, or shouts, when we need it “There is Something more, or Someone more, so keep going!”
Hope is not sentimental optimism. Optimists to easily escape reality, denying challenges in making promises that the are hard to keep. When we hope, we face reality because God is found in what is real. We know that things may not turn out as we want, but we strive valiantly nonetheless. God is faithful, we insist, so there is meaning even in the toughest and most unexpected circumstances.
When we hope, we live generously and gratefully in the present because deep down we know that all will be well – not perfect, but well. With every word or deed steeped in hope, the future opens up to reveal a present beyond our imagining. ”
Source: Fr. Kevin O’Brien
The Ignatian Adventure: Experiencing the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius in Daily Life.
Kevin O’Brien, SJ, is Dean of this Jesuit school of theology of Santa Clara University he is author of the nation adventure: experiencing the spiritual exercises of St. Ignatius and daily life.
“I’d rather be imperfect and happy than always trying to be perfect.” The THIRTEENTH WAY to leave the prison of depression.
The following two excerpts quoted below are from Believing is seeing:15 ways to leave the prison of depression.(2015). Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.
” One of the areas in my life where I strive to excel is in the area of trying to be perfect. Somewhere in our early development as children we got the message that if we were perfect we could be more acceptable to others. I gradually began to believe the more I tried to please other’s that this would bring me happiness. Instead all it brought me was a loss of myself. The loss of self reduced me to a shallow self without direction or meaning.” Page 63.
” Eventually, my depression became a sort of a comfort as it kept me from having to risk an unpredictable life. In other words, this way of living took away all hope. This is what keeps many of us depressed. We hold onto the mistaken belief that since bad things happened to us in the past, bad things will continue to happen to us in the future.” Page 64.
SOURCE: Copyright (c) Believing is seeing: 15 ways to leave the prison of depression. (2015) Depressed Anonymous Publications Louisville.
VISIT THE STORE for more information on other publications offered to the depressed by Depressed Anonymous Publications.
“Dr. Gerald May in his life giving book, Addiction and Grace, shares his thoughts about the risks of faith.
He states that “Several times now I have said that our real hope lies in that no matter how oppressed we may be, we always retain some spark of capacity to choose. We can use the ember of freedom to choose to risk ourselves in the goodness of God or to continue to strive for our own autonomy or to give in to the powers that oppress us. I am convinced that nothing whatever determines the choices we make at the primal level, here, finally, the choices are totally up to us; we really are free.” (p.127)
After reading these pieces dealing with hope we are left with the possibility that maybe even I or you have to start today. Yes, obviously to hope is to be living with some risk, but that beats, by a long shot, living in the unreal world of certainty that things will never get better for us.
The following is a text taken verbatim from the Depressed Anonymous Publication (c) I’LL DO IT WHEN I FEEL BETTER (2009), PAGES, 66-68.
“Ray (member of Depressed Anonymous fellowship) continues to talk about the various parts that make up one’s progress on the path to recovery. I think most depression sufferer’s go through a time of hopelessness and this feeling is very disabling for many of us. But with most problems or illnesses there is always hope. Hope that our problems will be solved or that will get better. So if hope is part of the solution, how do we find our own path of hope? Before we take that path I think it is important to see how the path is formed.
1. The first item is choices. We make choices every day for ourselves, some simple, some complex. These choices may affect us for the rest of our lives, that is, what do I want to do in life? What do I want from my life? What are my goals in life. Our lives are formed and maybe our own meaning of life is revealed to us. So our path is first formed with the choices that we make.”
2. Continued tomorrow—-stay tuned! Thank you
Copyright(c) How to find hope and let it blossom. Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville, Ky 40217. Pages 10-12.