August 31, 2010

The Power of Gratitude

I really liked reading today in Courage to Change, that a classic response a Sponsor might have when a Sponsee felt low.... would be to recommend a gratitude list.

I like that in my EA program, I used a daily gratitude list when I was in a relapse five years ago.
Feeling better emotionally the next summer, but aware of my struggles with perimenopause, I tried a different tactic. Feeling flattened by the summer heat, I made a list one evening of each thing I was unhappy about. When I felt done,I asked myself, "Is there anything more?" And when I could think of nothing else, I took a look at my list. It was surprisingly short, for feeling so bad. Did I really need to continue to think about how bad I felt?

With that list in front of me, I could do Step Eleven, and meditate, knowing that for the next few minutes all the problems were troubling me would still be there when I returned from my spiritual time. In the meantime, I could go to my Higher Power less encumbered by complaint. Just as it says in today's reading, whether I write a list of gratitudes or I write a list of gripes, "Nothing about my circumstances had changed except the way I felt about them. For the first time, I truly understood how much my attitude dictates the way I experienced the world.

What kind of a world do I want to live in? Let me begin to create that world today by doing one small thing to move my attitude in that direction.

Today's Reminder

"Today, I recognized how powerful my mind can be. I can't always feel good...but I can recognize that I am constantly making choices about how I perceive my world." With Program tools and others in our fellowship to encourage me, I can become ever more conscious and ever more at peace with my life as it is.

"Change your thoughts and you change your world." Norman Vincent Peale

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