My Truth

Got coping tools? YES I DO

In this world of uncertainty that we have found ourselves in, I started feeling anxious and overwhelmed while at the grocery store tonight.

I walked down aisle after aisle and found empty shelves and choices were limited. I was hit in the face with how real this is. The restaurant in the same parking lot was empty and the coffee shop was dark.

I felt that I needed to remind myself of all the tools and new ways of coping with life when life happens that I have learned from WORKING a recovery program. Cause life is happening right now and while it’s a little unsettling, I know that this will not last forever and God is in control.

I used my tools right away, which was kinda cool that it came so naturally. I reached out to my sponsor and talked to her about how I was I was feeling and why I felt this way. And I found out, that she was feeling the same way. Having a sponsor, accountability partner or trusted friend to talk to is just so important. I know I am not alone in my feelings.

Got coping tools, YES I DO!

Here are some other things that are on top of my toolbox:

🔨 Eating well. Comfort food is called that for a reason. Often is not the best choice but sure makes me feel good. Adding healthy options like a salad or veggies is a plus. I also tend not to eat and go for long periods of time without eating. So I need to keep planning meals so it’s something I don’t have to think about. I have it written down and know what to do next without having to think about. Making smart food choices will keep me healthy.

🔧 Take meds. Always take your meds as prescribed. It might be a good idea to take a vitamin too.

🔩 Exercise. Now that gyms are closing to practice social distancing, there are still lots of options. Can be as simple as going out for a walk. Or going up and down the stairs at home. Or there are tons of online resources on YouTube for workouts at home. If you have a gym membership, they may even have resources on their website or Facebook group. Or how about putting on your favorite music and just dancing!

🔨 Read. Lots of options here too. From the serenity prayer to the 12 steps and 8 principles (Celebrate Recovery) Can all be found on the CR app or online. The Holy Bible app is another really good one to download. There are many suggestions on the home page of the one I use has references hope and anxiety or I can search programs. Or I have even googled ’what does the Bible say about —- ’ to find really good verses on that topic or feeling. Can always read other stuff too but there are my go.

🔧 Journal. Journaling can help you sort out your feelings. Ask yourself, have I felt this way before? When? Why am I feeling this way? How did I cope last time? Did that help? Why or why not. Tons of journaling books available if you need props too.

🔩 Get creative. I enjoy painting but I recently discovered diamond painting which is kinda mindless yet fun. Sometimes I struggle with ideas on what to paint so diamond painting takes the pressure off. Think about what you enjoyed doing as a kid. Did you like to color, crossword puzzles or draw? Give those a try again. You may find a new (old) hobby.

🔨 Write a thank you or thinking of you note. Send an email or text and check on someone else. Let them know you are thinking about them. Set up a call and share a cup of coffee by phone.

🔧 Do and act of kindness. I cleaned out a cabinet over the weekend and found a few board games that we hadn’t used in years. So I posted on my neighborhood Facebook group and set them outside. They were gone within an hour.

🔩 My 100 things list. One of the first things my sponsor had me do was write a list of 100 positive words that described myself. This took me a month and I asked my friends for help and I use the thesauruses. But when it gets in my head that I am not enough, I reread these words to remind myself who I really am.

If you need a place to start, here are some things God says about us from a Bible study I did:

  • I am blessed
  • I am chosen, forgiven, favored and accepted
  • I am made in Gods image
  • I am His child
  • I am victorious and strengthened by Him
  • I am healed, new, delivered, set free and redeemed
  • I am complete
  • I am fearfully and wonderfully made
  • I am His masterpiece
  • And I am loved

🔨 Listen to Music. Have a playlist on your phone or listen to on of your favorites on YouTube and that song will lead to the next and you just may find a new favorite one.

🔧 You can meditate – there’s an app for that too. I use the free version of ABIDE. It’s a prayer meditation style app which has a list of topics from anger, anxiety to fear or hope. These are short just 2-5 minutes meditations.

Using these 🔨 🔧 🔩 will keep me connected. Connected to God. Connected to myself and my program and connected to others.

This is my final thought. 

From Philippians 4: 8-9

And now dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true and honorable and right and pure and lovely and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you.

And the God of peace will be with you….another word for peace is serenity. And the God of serenity will be with you.

Stay well. Stay positive. Take things one day at a time. Stay connected and go wash your hands.

My journey to serenity continues…

My Truth

If Nothing Changes, Nothing Changes

If nothing changes, nothing changes. BUT if something changes and you stick with it….EVERYTHING changes!

I know first hand how that works. In many parts of my life.

If I continued to relate to someone with codependency, that relationship will stay dysfunctional.

If I continued to not have boundaries with someone, I will continue to be run over and feel unheard.

If I continued to be in denial about my health, I would continue to on the path to put myself of a health risk.

I recently read ….Change happens when the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of change. By Tony Robbins. It’s so true.

Change can be scary. What’s going to happen to me when I get healthy….less dependent….more assertive….speak the truth in love…..forgive them…..take off my mask….forgive myself…..will people like me….will I even like me?

Well let me say when I stepped out of denial with my health because my pain of staying the same was greater than my pain of change. And I made real changes. And stuck to them for the last 5 months, EVERYTHING had changed. I have now lost 47 pounds. My blood sugar and pressure are back in normal ranges. I have more energy. I am no longer in physical pain daily. I am happier. I am more confident.

As far as if others will like me…..I don’t care. It no longer matters to me if others like me or not. I don’t need to know. It’s actually none of my business. The right people will not only like me, they will love me.

And to answer the do I like me question….I love who I am becoming. I finally feel like I am becoming who I was always meant to be. I love serving others in a ministry that walks along side others who are in pain from life. And they have reached that tipping point of staying the same is more painful than pain of change.

Together we work the 12 steps. They are designed to take actions to achieve the goals of recovery – reconciliation with God, with yourself, with others and then serving and giving back….that’s how it works.

And then together we learn the Celebrate Recovery principals to develop new attitudes – attitudes of humility, vulnerability, honesty and gratitude….that’s why it works.

I love being perfectly imperfect. I make mistakes. And then I can correct them. It’s not a success only Journey. And when I fail, I can get back up. Failing just means I’m trying and not standing still.

If nothing changes, nothing changes but if something changes and you stick with it, everything changes!

My journey to serenity continues…

Ps parts of this post is inspired by a Celebrate Recovery lesson. You will find the most amazing people there. To find a meeting near you, go the Celebrate Recovery website.

My Truth

Different, Better, More

It’s been so long since I’ve written. I’ve missed it so much.

I’ve spent the last few months continuing to grow by applying the tools that I’ve learned. And here recently, I’ve been learning new things by reading a book about grief.

Grief is not just experienced during time when a person dies but people experience grief during times of high emotions like being let go from a job, loss of a pet, moving, divorce, graduation, financial issues, empty nesting, retirement or even health issues to name a few.

I’m about half way done with this book and I have made some new connections that is helping understand myself on a different deeper level.

So I can’t wait to share more as times goes on.

I’m not a big believer in New Years resolutions mainly because I have not been successful in past years. At first it’s motivating it soon fades.

But I am a believer in words and how powerful they are for me. So rather than say, I’m going to join a gym and workout everyday, I’d rather say my focus is on self care this year and see how that plays out.

I found that for 2015 I wrote ‘living life with drive and purpose, faith and integrity, grace and joy, consistency and always with kindness.’ This was a hard year and I’m not sure how successful I was in all those words that year but then I got to start over.

And for 2016 my recovery journey started and I started the year off with ‘Trust His Plan’

I used words from my High School crest for 2017, ‘Grow in grace and wisdom’

For 2018 I wrote simply ‘I Love’. Which covered rediscovering and enjoying things I love and being open to finding new loves, like axe throwing! I went Axe Throwing a few weeks ago and loved it. It was so much fun.

So for 2019 my words are…..drum roll…

  • Different
  • Better
  • More

This is about doing even more that I love. Being around people I love. And stepping into new things coming my way with confidence.

I look forward to writing more this coming year and sharing new skills and dreams.

My journey to serenity continues…

Stay on this ride with me, the best is yet to be.

My Truth

Guilt and Shame…

Something happened last month that still surprises me when I think about it because I reacted to it differently than I ever had before. It was in that moment that I realized that I can recover from codependency behaviors and break this cycle that I have lived most of my life.

In the past, this person knew all the right buttons to push and knew exactly what to say to bring me to my knees and ‘win’ a disagreement. This person thrives on disagreements and tends to like to use big words to show me he is smarter than I am.

I have little contact with this person anymore but we do need to communicate at times.

We had a meeting scheduled and the night before the meeting, I was hammered with text messages about several things out of my control and frankly out of his control too. These messages included bringing up old situations which had long resolved themselves but not in the way he wanted. As well as why didn’t I notice this or why wasn’t I paying attention to that. And then THE ONE CARD that has always worked in the past was thrown at me.

And my reply….. You will not guilt and shame me into an argument with you.

And the messages stopped.

The meeting happened but before the meeting the same questions were asked and I said, this is not the time or place. If you’d like to meet for coffee, I’ll be happy to talk about it.

And after the meeting, it started again. And I said again….You will not guilt and shame me into an argument with you. I’m not trying to guilt or shame you he said….really I said and gave him examples of all the things he said or asked my those two days by text or in person. Those aren’t trying to guilt or shame me?

Tools I have learned because of recovery and not only learned but have put into practice are amazing.

The tit for tat and keeping score that worked for so long to get me to say or do what he wanted, no longer works. And taking a new approach from listening and love and support, works so much better for everyone involved.

One of my hangups is not being heard. Especially with this person. He has run me over time and time again because that is how we related to each other. But when I listened for what’s really going on and pointed it out. It has changed everything for me.

Arguing with someone not in recovery is hard because their version of the truth is clouded by their addiction. And it’s not just drugs or alcohol. It could be gambling or having to be right or perfect. It could even be Anger. Whatever it is, I don’t have to continue to react the way I always had. I can tell my truth and end the argument and pray that one day he will be get past his habits and hangups too.

I never learned a healthy way to disagree. Until I worked my 12 step program. I never knew how to be heard. Until I worked my 12 step program. I didn’t know a better way……until now.

12 step has changed my life for the good. And working a Christian based 12 step reminds me that all things work together for my greater good.

My journey to serenity continues….

My Truth

Standing in Solidarityb

As you may recall, I attend Celebrate Recovery which is a blended issue group. Anyone with any hurt habit or hang-up that separates you from God and want to change is welcomed with support, grace and love.

Those who struggle with food, alcohol, drugs, codependency, anxiety, pornography and the like are all represented in the room. From every walk of life. And in every stage of recovery. We support one another in what we struggle with with much love, encouragement and grace.

About 10 days ago, one of my fellow CR attendees lost her battle with her addiction. She struggled and was a fighter. She loved the Lord and trusted Him and His plan for her life. She touched many of our lives and I am grateful for the times her and I chatted before a meeting.

Last night we honored her in only the we could. We had our meeting. The first 30 minutes we have a band play song and last night was no different. Songs filled with hope and trusting God plan for each of us. We laughed and cried and shared stories of our relationships with her and how she touched our lives.

We stood in solidarity with her and with each other.

According to Webster’s Dictionary, solidarity is defined as…

sol·i·dar·i·ty noun

unity or agreement of feeling or action, especially among individuals with a common interest; mutual support within a group

synonyms: unanimity, unity, like-mindedness, agreement, accord, harmony, consensus, concurrence, cooperation, cohesion, fraternity, mutual support; 

“our solidarity is what gives us the credibility and power to make changes”


My recovery family means so much to me. I would not be in this place in my life without their support, grace and love. They have taught me what friendship looks like, in the room and outside the room too.

To my recovery sister – I know like I know like I know that you are free from your pain and struggle. You are with the angels, rejoicing in our victories and saving me seat a in the most amazing meeting that I cannot even imagine filled with support, grace and love.

My journey to serenity continues….

Thank you google images for the pic used in this post.