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SC's Advise today is the best I have seen!!
November 14, 2005
5:30 pm
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angel4U
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My humble opinion is that the advise below from the SC today is the best I have seen on this site yet, and if practiced in our real (offline) life, can be a major key to true growth.

I have some of my own personal notes to add, which I will post in a followup.

Thank you SC!

angel4u
--------

site coordinator
14-Nov-05

Hey everybody.

We are here to listen to each other, not to fix, judge, ignore, or call names or point fingers.

We are here, to listen, learn, & grow for OURSELVES... it's not a battle of who is right or wrong, or what behavior is right or wrong.

We all have a space here to be heard & supported for our "growth & learning efforts", even if they are in the beginning stages, and even if we have done harm to others in the past.

Having different opinions is ok, but they need not be pounded-in, yelled, repeated, or defended.

Please, we can simply state our case rather than grabbing it by the throat and shaking it- - if we do this, we can be assured that we ourselves, have a personal issue with something ... and we need to take ownership of our issues rather than blaming them on other people or people who have harmed us in the past (taking self-ownership for our own internal dissonnance/issues is step #1 in self-growth & change). Lashing out at others DOES NOT fix or heal our issues.

This place is about OURSELVES, not about what other people are doing or saying. If we keep that focus, and only talk about ourselves, and pay attention only to how we feel/react to others - rather than how wrong or horrible another person is or has been, then we can be sure we're on track with this site's mission.

Thanks... 🙂

site coordinator
14-Nov-05

Hey!

The intention of this site is NOT to defend our opinions, or, to defend anyone elses behavior or opinions.

We NEED only be here for OURSELVES. If there are other reasons for 'being here' - - then we need not be here.

This site is NOT a battleground for right or wrong or a place to judge each other. Talk ONLY about YOURSELF, and do so with respect & integrity, and you're more sure to be on track with that.

And of note: there is much risk on this site when we engage in defending others... not to mention that it is not self focused. Please also read my first post a few up from here.

Site Coordinator

November 14, 2005
5:38 pm
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addicts wife
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That was beutifully said, SC, and I will keep these things in mind, I thank you for these posts.
Kindest regards,
AW

November 14, 2005
5:39 pm
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angel4U
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Following is what I have learned and have put into practice that has been my best source of guidance and growth for me yet, and has enhanced my relationships with others (and myself) significantly ...

When you find something that triggers a thought or feeling that is not so positive, stop for a moment and ask yourself "why does this bother me so much?". In other words, rather than "react", do your homework within (and outside yourself, if necessary) so that (1) you can learn more about YOU & grow and (2) when you are ready to "act" on it (if you decide this is required, which I don't feel always is), you can do so with ownership, clear understanding and direction, integrity and YOUR OWN peace of mind in mind.

The alternative as I see it is putting the ownership for your thoughts, feelings and opinions onto others (what is called "projection"), and/or "assuming" that what another is saying/doing/thinking is a personal attack on you, and/or "assuming" that the way you think is RIGHT and the way they think is WRONG.

This produces from us a tendency to "all too quickly" start blaming, judging, controlling, attacking, becoming prejudice; causes us to make assumptions & presumptions about others and/or the situation; and in the end leads to nothing but defensiveness from other people, broken bonds/relationships, and no growth for anyone.

Our feelings/thoughts really are all about us, and it starts and ends there. What's in between is an opportunity for true growth, happiness and peace if you allow it to be.

Many blessings to all,

angel4U

November 14, 2005
5:59 pm
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kc30
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Well said Angel.

I am very guilty of the knee-jerk reactions you have described. These reactions defined (and damaged) many of my relationships before I found recovery. I have seen myself very clearly in the postings of others today.

I was unaware of my patterns in the past. I would fight to the bitter end to prove I was "right" to other people...to the point where the relationship would be damaged. I accused others of being close-minded and judgemental...I mean, they were, right (hee hee)??!! I fought like hell to "make them see" my way. Being judgemental was the WORST offense in my eyes...

Then I started recovery...and after many, many months of working on my self-esteem, I found the courage to start a 4th step inventory. Much to my horror (and I literally felt sick for days) I discovered that all that finger pointing at other people was really masking the character defect I least liked about myself...that I was judgemental!!!

But how could that be? I am a nice person...liberal thinking and very tolerant. How was it that I just couldn't let a difference of opinion go...that I had to prove myself right at all costs?

With much, much work...I discovered that my need to be right was tied up with my self-esteem. My self-esteem was so low and damaged that I associated a person's rejection of one of my beliefs to be a rejection of me, personally. LIGHT BULB!!

I was also very sensitive to any type of criticism or feedback. I took it all so personally...as though I wasn't fighting to voice an opinion...but fighting to prove that I am good, valuable and worthy. I was so desparate for approval because I had none to give myself.

At first I was appalled at myself, but over time I am coming to understand that these are learned reactions that can be unlearned and replaced. I am not a bad person...I was a very fragile, hurting person, and that's why I reacted the way I did. It was pure survival instincts for a very damaged psyche.

It's a work in process. But I do know that the more I value myself, the less desire I feel to fight and defend my opinions and my beliefs. I'm getting comfortable enough with myself to offer my own insight, but withstand the rejection if that's the case, without falling apart.

And I'm becoming more comfortable receiving feedback as well. I welcome it actually, although my first reaction is always to defend myself! But i don't...I do exactly what you have described and end up learnign so much more about myself! Well, most times I do...let's be real, I'm FAR from perfect or recovered!

Someone said that recovery is fun, and I thought they were nuts at first. But I'm discovering they were right!

"It works if you work it, and I work it because I'm worth it"

peace

kc

November 14, 2005
6:14 pm
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sewunique
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Welcome back, angel!

Yes, to what you shared here.

I, however, do empathize (not to mistaken for sympathy) and understand what others have said in REACTION to the other thread. It is hard even when great healing has taken place, even tho' years may distance the event(s) of trauma; that we still are affected by reflection of reminders of horrors past that we hope, believe and live through healing in the future.

I hope you have been well lately, Angel?

Love and Peace,

Sew/C

November 14, 2005
6:16 pm
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kc30
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I guess I'm excited about this so I'm still going!

Ever since I've started recovery, all of my relationships are healthier! I can actually listen to another person talk rather than waiting for my turn to have my say! I can HEAR them, and actually find myself to be a very good listener now, and it's somethign that I can feel good about!

My professional life is also better. I've always been successful, but couldn't take constructive feedback. now, I can hear what is being shared and really process it (once the inital defensiveness is gone) and I'm finding ways to actually improve upon my work, which is what feedback is supposed to do, I guess.

Everything is better since I've started working on myself and learning to love and value myself.

That's the pitfall of codependancy for me...when I'm engaged in a relationship where all my attention is directed on someone else, then I stop learning who I am and what is lovable about me. That's why no contact was so helpful for me...I refused to let myself contact that toxic person so I had to find a way to fill the void...hence...I got to know me!

I just can't believe how much better my life is, and it's only been 18 months of recovery from codependancy for me! How will I feel in five years?! WOW!!

Life is so much better when I keep the focus on MY life...discovering who I am, not trying to change someone else....be it my cheating husband or someone on this board or my sister or anyone else. I can control ME, and if I keep my eye on my life, it just keeps getting better. 🙂

Thanks again for starting this thread

kc

November 14, 2005
7:18 pm
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angel4U
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((((((((((((kc)))))))))))

Congratulations!!!! I can see the positive vibes just bursting from your posts!! YOU GO GIRL!!! It is so true that when we have confidence in ourself and our own needs, the rest is a "piece of cake" ... well, ok, that's going a little too far as a real piece of cake (with the icing and all) would mean everything would turn out exactly as we hope or want, and we know that's not always the case 😉

Hey Sew, soooo good to hear from you!!!

About your comment about people reacting to the happenings on the other thread: For clarification - I see nothing wrong with people sharing what they believe, but I do think it is wrong when doing so involves attacking and/or belittling others. I am also an advocate of stating my opinions once and in an "I" sense (e.g. "I feel attacking comments are disruptive to this post/site) and stating the facts (e.g. "attacking is against the rules of this site"). When another person then raises the bar and I feel I am not being heard, I disengage as I see no means for healthy communication or resolution in that circumstance. At that point I feel the other party is reacting under pure emotion (for which I do believe comes from something deeper within - based on my experience with myself and others), and therefore sensible/respectable reasoning can not take place until things have calmed down.

About my life - I posted an update to where things are at on the thread "Prayer Request - Just learned my Mom has cancer again". As a quick update here - I'm doing pretty good. Have learned ALOT of good stuff over the past year that I think will carry me through a lifetime. I know life will bring me more "bumps" in the road, but I now think I have the right car (tools) to ride over them safely ... =))

How have you been????

November 14, 2005
7:35 pm
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exoticflower
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Very true, thanks for the reality check, SC. I hate to admit when I have been self ritious, but yes, yes i have here. Thanks for putting it into persective and refreshing my memory as to what I am here for...

November 14, 2005
9:56 pm
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sewunique
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yes, I am stepping aside along the "path of self discoverey" for others myself put aside; in hopes much learning here is accomplished. Hard to say. After being here a year, have learned a lot! Heaven Knows....
Sew would be right there to take on any challenge here. And just standing up for one's view was a giant leap for me! So I pray that good things will come of all this. Maybe later, and not now. Who knows?

I am sorry about your mother having cancer again; I did not know. I missed that thread and haven't been here much!

Is your mom getting treatments that are helping? I will have to go over there and read your thread. Attaching a prayer here to go upwards for you and for her both!!!Love,

Sew/C

Oh, PS....I am doing great, alas part of the reason I am not here much. (Other than bad PC, broken down notebook and Katrina blew out electricity, still working on it from West Palm BBeach to Ft Lauderdale! three weeks later.) I am buying mom's condo, etate stuff nearly done. Am shopping and scheming ideas of creativity and designs for remodeling majorly here. Ha! Wait for reality whe the cost becomes a factor! At least I can do some things myslef like sew, wallpaper, knock off tile from the walls and paint. No one dares paint here but me; my natural father (and brother) were/ are painters, hand sign painters,so I too can do. That's it!

November 15, 2005
2:50 am
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Lass
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I would like to say that I have seen some real, true communication here and in some posts today. I did not know people were really capable of such clear, clean talk. I am fairly floored. Not knowing how, yet, I can only speak in stories about myself, aphorisms, fairly tales, folk tales, sayings, quotes. This is an odd thing to find out about oneself: that speaking assertively is too frightening for me in a scary situation, like here, today. And I tried. I have read the posts on assertive communication. But what has really shown me how, is reading you guys, and getting a feel for it. Maybe one day, when I am a true grown up, and match my age, I can talk like you all. Wait.... ~ I hope I find my own natural voice. Thanks for being the example you are....

LL

November 15, 2005
3:01 am
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Lass & Sew are you still up?

I feel bad. I made a faux pas. It seems like today the more I say the further I put my foot in my mouth here. I don't know. I just came on tonight totalk about simple stuff and got so sidetracked and didn't even express myself right. Hope I didn't through oil on the fire.

Lass... you never answered my vocabulary question from earlier!

November 15, 2005
3:03 am
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Lass
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I am lost? Vocabulary Q? I am still up tho!

November 15, 2005
3:05 am
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Lass
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Oh, and ella, it's all just smoldering now... so there's no chance it will catch afire... you can't hurt us anymore than we've all hurt ourselves here today. We all did some toenail biting.

November 15, 2005
3:09 am
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Yeah... I guess it's like talking circles after a while. I hope it's over. Sorry to add to it.

Oh, were you the one talking about chores before and you said something that sounded like "niggling?" Did you make that up? Or is it slang for something? Or a typo? Ask me why I'm thinking about this at 3 am? I need to get a life.

November 15, 2005
3:13 am
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Lass
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Hah! That's myown cowboy country lingo... but it's a real word, at least to me! It means things that get to ya' after awhile. I am up at 12:30 still here, bu that's pretty normal for me. How are you decompressing from all this? You okay?

November 15, 2005
3:17 am
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Hehe. It reminded me of when an old bf of mine used to say "frigadiggy" which I thought was much better than the f word (my usual choice).

I'm okay. Would have done better with a little less drama on the site tonight b/c I have some more mundane issues to attend to. But they can wait. It's so CODA of me (and I hate that lable) not to address them, and get distracted instead!

November 15, 2005
3:18 am
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You sounded well, hope your day tomorrow is good too. We are both going to be exhausted! Do you have an early day?

November 15, 2005
3:24 am
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Lass
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Nope! I just have to get up and take son to school. I am getting stuck on this site too much, I think. Will have to return to real life more. It has been pretty effective at helping me to turn one addictive relationship aside, though.

The drama was a drain, but I learned a lot about speaking. I am going to bed, honey. Big hug to you. Don't worry about games. Keep your own side of the street clean and let others worry about themselves for the time being. Focus on the newcomer who needs help.

LL

November 15, 2005
3:28 am
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Goodnight Lass.

-ella

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