I believe that my life is going to get better! Hope is a hard habit to break!

 

How often have I heard these powerful words at one of our group Depressed Anonymous meetings. In fact, it is  oftener  than one would think, seeing where most of the group members have been before opening the door  into our fellowship.

Not only have we heard powerful stories of recovery but we also witness them with  own eyes. By coming to meetings week after week, we  begin to see the truth of the Promises as laid out for each of us who take that first step into recovery.  In Higher Thoughts for Down Days I read that I am going to be secure in my belief that my life is going to get better.

Today is the day. Doing your best, living each day to the fullest is the art of living. Yesterday is gone forever, and we don’t know whether we will be here tomorrow. If we do a good job of living today, and if tomorrow does comes for us, then the chances are we will do a good job when it arrives – so why worry about it?

This makes sense to me. What about you?  I know that the more I share myself with others, be that with my DA sponsor or with other members of our fellowship, that my life is beginning to change for the better. Also, the more I share with others the more spontaneous I become, and there are now some bright periods  of my life beginning to appear in my life.

I believe that by living in the present reduces my trust in the past fears of yesterday or the anxious moments I thought I needed for tomorrow.

Knowing that others, who are just like me, can make it through   the day with a greater amount of serenity and peace  as they try to live in today-just for the next 24 hours.

We all believe that the more we turn our minds and wills toward God, the more God will turn his love and will for us in unmistaken ways  and with our belief that God is truly with us.

AS Brad Cohen tells us in that great Hallmark Movie, FRONT OF THE CLASS, “Hope is hard to break.”

Hopeful people gather together on  every continent on this planet. Their hope stems from a strong belief  that with God’s help and support from their fellow members of DA (Or any other 12 Step mutual aid group) they become energized by people feeling better and coming more energized about trying to live their life with purpose and meaning.

Every Depressed Anonymous meeting starts with a statement on How Depressed Anonymous Works:

” You are about to witness the miracle of the group. You are joining a group of people who are on a journey of hope and who mutually care for each other. You will hear how hope, light and energy have been regained by those who were hopeless and in a black hole and tired of living. ”

In the Big Book of Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition,  you can read story after story of those persons who have  escaped from the prison of their isolation. These stories tell each of us that there is hope and you can have it too. If it has taken  you a lifetime to find a healing way out of your depression, you then can   appreciate those others who have made it-all now living with hope and trust.

SOURCES

(C) Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition. (2011). Depressed Anonymous Publications.Louisville. Ky. (Personal stories section).

(C)I’ll do it when I feel better. (2017) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville, Ky.

(c) Higher Thoughts for Down Days: 365 daily thoughts and meditations for members of 12 step fellowship groups. (1998) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.

 

“You become what you do!”

How often have I heard this said about those of us who are involved with the  spiritual principles of the 12 Steps of recovery.  You become what you do. You become what you think. And your behavior promotes a habitual way to act. By doing the same thing time after time promotes a habit.   Good habits   builds our strengths.

One of the recommendations often heard at our meetings is that we  want to  attend as many meetings as possible when we enter through that door of our 12 step recovery. And when we have admitted that our life is out of control and unmanageable it is then that we learn how to begin a new way of living and have a life filled with hope. We call this the time of surrender.

When I finally faced my addictions, it was then that I knew I had to surrender,  to make possible a new life, that new way of living  that had been promised me by those of the Depressed Anonymous fellowship.  And what did I do? First of all I attended Depressed Anonymous meetings, week after week, read all the  literature that was available to me, got  a sponsor,(someone who would mentor me through the Steps, ), made a place in my day for prayer and mediation so that the God of my understanding would continually nudge and guide me to right living and peace of mind. And just like it was promised to me, I  found peace of mind  and freedom from the pain of depression.  I just knew that now I had found a way to have hope plus that  community of people, who  just like myself,  were walking the same path as I was. I was no longer alone!

In our manual , Depressed Anonymous,  we can read how about  those of us who became what they were willing to do to find a way out of their depression.   In  my own life, I found the fog of confusion and pain gradually disappearing,  not overnight, but as I continued to practice the spiritual principles of the 12 steps.  The group meetings plus the daily reading of  the Depressed Anonymous literature will always  work its daily miracle in our lives.

I became what I did to get well! So can you become what you do and what you want to be.

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COPYRIGHT  (C) Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition. (2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.

COPYRIGHT(C) The Depressed Anonymous Workbook, (2002) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.

Also available one can use the Home Study Combo (DA MANUAL AND  WORKBOOK) for help when there is no DA group in your locality. There is always the ongoing support from the fellowship for guidance and hope.

For more information about who we are and what we do,  go to www.depressedanon.com. Also visit the store here for all the literature that can  be ordered online.

 

 

 

“Hope is Something more, Someone more, so keep going!”

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.

 

Anxiety and the four simple rules for recovery

–the cure for physical symptoms of anxiety–

Four simple rules

FACE:  Do not run away

ACCEPT: Do not fight/floating

FLOAT PAST:  Do not stop/pause and listen in

LET TIME PASS:  Do not be impatient with time

For example, the nervously ill person usually  notices each new symptom in alarm, listens in  apprehension, and yet at the same time is afraid to examine it too closely for fear this will make it worse. So he/she agitatedly seeks occupation to try to force forgetfulness.

This is running away, not focusing

He may try to cope with the unwelcome feeling by tensing himself against them, thinking, “I must not let this get the better of me.”

He is fighting, not accepting and floating.

He is listening in, noticing each new symptom with alarm

He also keeps looking backward and worrying because so much time has passed and he is not cured -and if there is an evil spirit that could be exorcised if only he or the doctor knew how to do it.

He is impatient with time, is not willing to let time pass.”

Check in tomorrow for a more account of how this all works, especially whilre learning more about the First fear and the Second fear.

 

The two works which have helped me most of my life in recovery are these two books  written by Dr. Clair Weekes:

Hope and Help for your Nerves

Peace from Nervous Suffering.