Our host for this weekend is Ashley. Ashley has her own blog called "Back from Chaos." It describes her challenges and her steps to "recovery."
Ashley is a regular to our blog and provides a lot of good comments. She is encouraging and hopeful.
This is where we start. Ashley has posted the message below. These are Ashley's words which start our meeting on:
"Focus on Ourselves"
I had an incredible meeting on Tuesday night - topic was "Focus on Ourselves" and I thought this could be a great topic for the weekend meeting.
One of the readings from Courage to Change jumped out at me.
"Many of us learn the value of self-expression in Al-Anon. We discover how we feel and benefit from giving voice to those feelings when it seems appropriate. But there's a difference between expressing ourselves and using words to control others.
Sometimes the only way I can determine whether I'm trying to control someone else or whether I'm simply expressing my feelings is by noticing how many times I say the same thing. If I mention something that is on my mind and then let it go no matter what response I get, I am speaking sincerely. If I repeatedly make similar suggestions or ask prodding questions again and again, I am probably trying to control (emphasis mine). If I am satisfied only when the other person responds in a way I consider desirable -- agrees with what I've said or takes my advice -- then I know I've lost my focus."
"I am learning to be honest with myself. I will not use my recovery as an excuse to justify my efforst to change other people's thinking. Trying to control other people only gets me in trouble. Instead, I will promptly admit such mistakes and put my energy back where it belongs by focusing on myself."
I ended up posting this on my blog yesterday because I really wanted to remember it.
I do this all the time. When my husband and I are arguing or even discussing things, I always think maybe if I just state it a different way, it will make sense to him. I never consider that I might be wrong, or even if I'm right, he may not agree with me. There are times that I feel like I've failed if I can't get him to see things my way. I think that I just didn't figure out the right combination of words to convince him I'm right.
Obviously one of the many things I have to work on.
Hope you're having a great day! Ashley
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