Oh my goodenss, this is true for everyone in this world but think how magnified it is with the alcoholic and addict and our insane thinking!
To assume what other people are thinking or feeling without asking them is to invite misunderstanding. Just as disastrous is to assume other people know what we want or need without our telling them. Many potentially good friendships and marriages perish because of our false assumptions and our lack of honest communication.
Do we assume others can’t live without us or wouldn’t know what to think or feel unless we told them? Do we take for granted that “silence means assent”? Do we assume others don’t have time for us, or don’t care about us, if they don’t call or go out of their way to talk to us? Do we think others can read our minds without our ever opening our mouths?
Since we can only assume the same limited or distorted thoughts of others that we have of ourselves, we each need to take the initiative to ask probing questions and give honest responses in our relationships.
TODAY I will not make the mistake of projecting my feelings onto others. I will initiate honest and open communication.
You are reading from the book:
Meet Scott. Scott has been a Rockstar Collegiate Case Managers for 8 years. Here are some words of wisdom from Scott.
Ok, so how many of you looked at that line and said to yourself, “they left a ‘t’ out of the butts!” I would have. Maybe you saw that word and thought, “oh no, another quit smoking article.” While smoking is bad for your health and can contribute to relapse, you can relax because I’m not talking about that either.
What I am talking about are excuses we make for not following through with actions that will help us. You know, those little things that get in the way of our progress. Some examples of what I hear on a daily basis are as follows:
“I would go to IOP, but I can’t be tied up that many times per week.”
“I would choose a sponsor, but I don’t want to get the wrong one.”
“I need to look for a job, but who would hire an addict?”
“I would get a list of local 12 Step meetings, but I really can’t check them out until I get out of treatment.”
“I need to finish my fourth step, but I don’t know if I’m doing it right.”
“I need to start my fourth step, but I don’t think I have that many resentments.”
“I would help others, but I’m shy.”
These are typical “but” statements for people in treatment and early recovery. Have you had similar ones? Even later in recovery we can become prone to making statements like these:
“I would return to school and finish that degree, but where do I find the time?”
“I should make that amends to my co-worker, but it wasn’t that big a deal.”
“I need to start exercising, but I’m so busy already.”
“I should eat better, but I’m on the road a lot.”
Any of these sound familiar? A couple of them have come out of my mouth from time to time. When I was young and didn’t finish a project in school, a very influential person in my life heard me say, “I could have finished it, but I think I have a pretty good excuse.” His response was, “an excuse, whether good or bad, is still an excuse.” Now, when I utter a “but” statement I have to stop and evaluate my priorities. What is really important to us? Once in a while, my friends, we just have to get off our “buts” and do the work.
Steve has been with La Ha for 14 months but has been in the chemical dependency field for 12 years. He is a case manager and what he loves most about his job is “the opportunity that God affords me occassionally to be present when someone comes to a new perspective or insight about their life.” Thanks Steve for doing all you do!
AA attendance was mandated for me by the criminal justice system over 20 years before I got sober. So, I went. All I ever saw or heard (because all I ever wanted to see or hear) was the droll repetition of the same ol’ stuff out of the same ol’ book by the same ol’ men every time I went. All I could hear these folks saying was “You can’t (fill in the blank)!” or “you can never again (fill in the blank)” or “If you (fill in the blank) you will surely relapse!” I perceived recovery to be very RESTRICTIVE! Here you are, new in sobriety and wanting to avoid all those terrible jails, institutions, divorces, car wrecks and coyote-wake-ups that became routine during your active addiction. So your initial objective is NOT TO DO all those things (that come in a bag or a bottle or britches or however your problems are packaged) that brought you to the brink of ruination. You are constantly exhorted to STAY AWAY from old playmates, playgrounds, playthings.
My perception has proven over these years to be wrong. I have learned that recovery is by no means restrictive….it is actually EXPANSIVE. It is much more about the things that I couldn’t do before that I can do now. I can be a father, a grandfather!, a husband, a friend. I can meditate, write, work, love, remember, laugh, exercise, BE PRESENT! I am doing things that I always dreamed about but could never, I am enjoying life and living in areas of my life where I haven’t always had areas.
Life is not diminished or restricted by recovery, it is enhanced and expanded. Millions of people in AA and NA can guarantee that! Get you some of it!
As I am sure you can imagine, there are a lot of policies and procedures that are in place to make La Hacienda safe, efficient and successsful. They are updated monthly and must be reviewed and signed off by every employee. Obviously, this is not the most exciting part of the job but nonetheless, necessary. So, Pam decided to take the mundane and make it, well, cool. Two Cool Flamingo Awards are awarded each month to the smallest and largest departments that sign off the fastest. The winners don’t just get bragging rights but they also get the Cool Flamingo for the month.
I have to admit, I was expecting yard art but this little guy is pretty cute. This month the ladies of Health Information Management are the reigning champs for small departments and Housekeeping takes the prize for the largest department. New award categories are being thought up as we speak! Good times!
Meet Scott. Scott is one of our Rockstar Collegiate Case Managers and has been for 8 years. Here are some words of wisdom from Scott.
We were making dinner last night when the news came on that Steve Jobs had passed away. I thought, “how sad, but why do I feel so impacted by the death of a man I never knew?” As I reflected on this through the evening I was reminded of two things.
The first was that Steve Jobs had a terminal illness and had been battling it for 8 years. I was reminded that I, like so many others, also have a chronic, terminal illness. It doesn’t feel that way when one is in recovery, but I have to remember that I still have it.
The second thing I reflected upon had to do with the story of a very young Steve Jobs who approached the CEO of Pepsico, John Sculley, in order to ask him to come and run his young Apple Computer company for him. After listening to Jobs lay out his vision of putting computers in every home in America and advancing technology to make life better, the CEO asked the skinny kid in blue jeans, “why should I give up all this and take a chance working for you?” Jobs’ answer was profound. “Do you want to sell sugar water for the rest of your life, or do you want to come with me and change the world?” Guess who resigned from Pepsico.
What resounds in me today is this. We are all here for a purpose and I am grateful to be able to work in a profession and at a facility that is changing the world, one life at a time, one day at a time.