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this week has been GREAT!...alicat
January 9, 2006
3:58 pm
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Anonymous
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guest, yeah, yesterday I did JUST that.

but I built my list so that even some "small things" get a reward.

so, taking my vitamins, which is basic, gets a reward. cooking dinner, gets a reward. I did NOTHING yesterday and still managed to get 50 cents. I was in my bathrobe all day - but still found ways to pat myself on the back.

yesterday I NEEDED to sit and do nothing. so, I paid attention to what I needed - and earned a dime for just that.

I stayed positive - and didn't beat myself up for being lazy - so I earned a dime for that.

I drank my water - so I earned a dime for that.

so yeah, it is easy to get lazy and say forget about it - but I built in a few "fail safes" so that I don't go thru a day without ANY reward.

hell, if I decided to throw the WHOLE thing out the window - vitamins, water and all - but said "that's okay" for today - that's positive thinking and I get a dime for it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I created a situation that I can't lose!

January 9, 2006
4:38 pm
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hmmmm interesting - a situation where you cant lose eh. I hope I can do it. Where did you get the idea for this? How long have you been doing it? Is there any "guide" on how to set up this system, or any directions you can give?

January 9, 2006
5:02 pm
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I got this idea myself - cuz I was tired of being miserable and had to find something that worked FOR ME.

there is alot of self help books out there - and they all talk about loving yourself - but in the end, you need to find a process that works for YOU independently. Cuz, for everyone, it's different.

I have been doing it for a full week.

I let my own "logic" be my guide. I looked at things I need to do to make my body healthy, my mind healthy and my "environment" healthy.

The only directions I can give is to look at what you do "wrong" and think about BABY STEPS to changing it. I STRESS BABY STEPS - cuz often we bite off more than we can chew.

Also - make it DETAIL SPECIFIC. Cuz if you are vague and general, you won't have a way to gauge success.

And don't worry about how petty or small it is - include it if it's important to you - don't worry about what other's think.

my best friend cooks dinner every night, is always cleaning and doing those kinds of things - they come naturally to her and she is a stay at home mom with four kids - so it's different for her...I can't keep up like she does - I don't compare myself to her - I just focus on ME.

I think the most important thing is being HONEST with yourself. If you can't be honest with yourself - and look at things with an open mind - you can't win. Cuz in order to be healthy - and change for the better - you need to see where there is room for improvement.

And above all else - but ALL FOCUS on EVERYONE ELSE - ASIDE!!!!!!!!! If you are spending your time thinking about work, your spouse or partner, your kids, your car, the weather, your mom or dad, your siblings or whatever - this won't work....you need to be dedicated to making yourself the number ONE priority. The rest falls into place.

What can YOU do to make YOU happy????? NOT what can someone else do to make you happy. and NOT "how can I make them love me better, so their love will make me happy?"

My partner loves me more because of these changes - your partner may not (especially if they are selfish and feeling bad cuz of the lack of attention) - but that's okay - they don't have to agree with the changes - they are for you and you alone. The right partner will love you for the positive changes - and support you with it - the wrong partner will challenge your efforts. Don't give up on yourself.

Guest, there really is no magic formula, I hope these guidelines help you figure out what works for you.

January 9, 2006
6:02 pm
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bonni
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Thanks Ali,
I am SO proud of you, and inspired. i've been taking babysteps for over a year now. a very difficult year. last night, after posting with you, dh took girls to grocery store and I FINISHED straightening the house in about an hour. i only did 5-15 minutes per room, depending upon its start state. i have to do laundry now. you are so right about the impact of your surroundings on your mental state.

what do you think your first reward will be? I mean besides the euphoria of success.

January 9, 2006
6:11 pm
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um, not sure, probably a hair cut!

I have been wanting highlights, so that's on my list too. I figure I will have $30 to spend, so not sure what I will do with it - basically see what I need at that time.

In the meantime, I AM making sure I buy myself any necessities as I see fit - right now I need sneakers (BADLY) and new long sleeved shirts and sweatshirts....also could use one more pair of jeans.

Not going to go hogwild tho...and when the end of the month gets here, I will see what I need!

If I lose weight, I won't need new clothes, because I have a closet full of nice new stuff that I didn't stay long in before.

January 9, 2006
6:22 pm
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feline
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Big Hugs Ali - I hope your positve attitude rubs off on the rest of us. Lol.

January 10, 2006
4:02 pm
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Glad to hear things are going good for you Ali!

Love and hugs,
Mamabear

P.S. I too love your reward idea! May think about it for myself, I do it for my kids, and it is a nickle for them, but I hadn't thought about it for myself!

January 10, 2006
4:51 pm
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I see it this way - whatever I do for my loved ones - I WILL DO for myself - after all, I need to love myself as much as I love them!

January 10, 2006
5:14 pm
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pathfinder
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Alicat,

Your post caught my eye because you mentioned that your Zoloft kicked in. I started on Zoloft six days ago (25mg). Needless to say it hasn't kicked in yet. How long did it take to work for you and how many miligrams are you taking. My doc said you can go as high as 200mg!!! I'm not to fond of taking anti-depressants. I'm just taking it to get over this hump. Hopefully it will work, though I'm skeptical! I'm glad to see that some of us are feeling good. Hopefully I'll be there soon.

January 10, 2006
5:30 pm
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Hi Pathfinder,

I know I'm not Ali, but I thought I would throw in my two cents anyway.

First, I'd like to say that there is no shame in taking medication. To me the only shame would to NOT take something that can help you.

Having said that, I was also on Zoloft, some years back, for anxiety. I started on 50mg (if I remember correctly) and took it for about two weeks before I began to really benefit from it...and benefit I did.

After years of anxiety, sleep problems, inability to concentrate, weight loss, etc. that evenutally led to the abuse of alcohol to alleviate those symptomes, Zoloft (combined with therapy) helped me finally be able to function again.

I stopped taking it on my own, which is not recommended, and luckily had no adverse reaction.

Again, I say...if it works...go with it.

Good luck,
Lolli

January 10, 2006
5:43 pm
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pathfinder
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Thanks Lolli! I keep you posted with my progress.

January 10, 2006
9:45 pm
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Ali,
I am so proud of you and Happy for you!
Hugs, Lost

January 11, 2006
12:14 pm
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mamabear
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Ali,
Thinking of you and wondering if your great week is still going strong. Hopefully it will turn into a great month and then year!

Love ya,
Mamabear

January 11, 2006
12:15 pm
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YUP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

the smile has not faded!

and each day I am accomplishing more and more - and feeling that much better!

thanks for asking!!!!!!

January 11, 2006
3:23 pm
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alicat, thats great! Good luck in future success too. In the bad times, hang in there. You're a strong person. Thanks for the lots of detailed information about your action plan! I hope it continues working for you. I'll keep it in mind for myself too.

January 11, 2006
4:27 pm
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Well, gosh. You're welcome. Glad to see you in such good spirits still. It encourages me!

Love ya,
Mamabear

January 16, 2006
10:22 am
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Okay, I made a full two weeks on this plan.

And I am LOVING life.

I made plans with my best friend - to have her and her family come over to watch a movie friday night after work.

I did not tell the BF about this - as I didn't care if he participated or not.

He planned on being home early - and I did tell him what was up - in some way, I was afraid he wouldn't come home until late - because six people in our home can be chaos. But he was coming home on time.

Then, I had to get out of work, pick up pizza, pick up movies, pick my daughter up at swim practice and be home for them.

I was a bundle of nerves - worried that I would be late doing all this.

Well, they showed up late - and that made me a little edgy - only cuz I rushed to get home in time. And BF called and was running late cuz of problems with his step dad's vehicle.

Anyway, we all got settled in later than I expected - but was still nice....the kids played and we all ended up watching tv together and talking.

they left around ten and we collapsed in exhaustion.

I was supposed to go to my coda meeting on saturday, but decided not to go - and slept in with my BF - felt good to be together and snuggle....I guess I was more tired than I thought. We got out of bed late, had a nice brunch and lounged around. Later in the evening, we dropped my daughter off at my friend's house for a sleep over and my BF and I went out for dinner and home for some alone time.

Sunday came and I hadn't slept well, so I fell back asleep after BF got up - and woke up around noon. We chilled together and then ran to walmart for supplies. My friend called and asked to keep my daughter for one more night - so that was good.

We came home, had dinner and watched the season premier of 24 - while playing pool online together.

Then had some alone time and fell asleep soundly together.

was a good weekend and despite a little anxiety over pulling off the "perfect evening" for everyone - things were good.

Life is good - things aren't much different than before - but our attitude is - and that's making all the difference in the world.

January 16, 2006
11:17 am
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Ali,

I'm so happy to hear that things are still going well for you.

Keep up the good work and enjoy....you deserve it.

Love,
Lolli

January 16, 2006
11:23 am
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How are things going for you, Lolli? How was your weekend?

January 16, 2006
11:43 am
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Things are going VERY well....which always seems to leave me a bit uncomfortable.

He has been trying so hard to make me happy. He has been working less (taking weekends off), helping around the house, buying me nice gifts, contributing financially for groceries, etc., and even did my laundry yesterday while I was napping! More important than all of these things...he's actually been COMMUNICATING!

We did have a discussion about this whole child situation last week, which initally he reacted with his usual defensive anger, but when all was said and done, we were able to discuss it and for the first time, I actually feel as though I have been HEARD and that my feelings do matter. I hope to now be able to move past this and just deal with the present.

Another cause for concern with me was that I am starting school again tomorrow night, which in the past has triggered his insecurites. I brought it up over the weekend to try to get it out in the open before hand, and we actually had a really good talk and he seems to be just fine. We will see for sure in a couple of weeks when I am paying more attention to school than to him, but for now, he seems okay. I will also try to work my schedule so that he doesn't feel as neglected.

Over all, at this point, things couldn't be better. Unfortunately, I am still a bit haunted by his past behavior and silently waiting for the other shoe to drop. Hopefully, with any luck...it won't happen. In the meantime, I am going to enjoy the wonderful time we are having together.

Thank you for asking.

Love,
lolli

January 16, 2006
12:33 pm
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Lolli,

I found that being afraid of the past kept me from enjoying the present. Worrying about the future did the same.

I know how it feels to worry about the other shoe dropping.

But in all reality - that was MY FEARS. And I found that the more I worried about it - the more likely it was to come true.

So I would really recommend looking at ways to get past that worry - so you can enjoy the time together - and so you don't create a "self fufilling prophecy" situation.

I know that E and I have some situations that aren't quite fixed - but if I focus on what's not fixed, I won't enjoy what is!!!!!

Sounds like you guys are on the right track - I'm happy for you!

January 20, 2006
2:14 pm
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Week three is coming to a close.

And I can't ask for any better!

When I tossed all expectations and needs out the window - my needs were met TENFOLD.

I have had another glorious week and can't wait for the weekend to begin.

Still continuing with therapy - tho reconsidering continuing with coda meetings....my "reward" program is coming along beautifully - and I am eating well, exercising daily and keeping up with household chores and routines. My attitude is positive and upbeat and I can find gratitude and joy in all things around me.

My BF has felt the effects of this change and he has responded very positively and he is home on a regular basis, he is helpful, supportive, and loving. He is working hard to repay his bills. He is working hard to find a new job. He is working hard at his communication skills and balancing life in two states.

I am happy, playful, joyful, and smiling on a daily basis. I am thankful to be alive and experiencing all that my higher power is sending my way.

Yesterday I got many surprises - from my BF coming home unexpectedly, to him bringing me a cup of tea while I got my car serviced, to the free samples of meds from my doctor, to the movie store waiving my late fees, to the car dealership not charging me to service my car (covered by service plan), to my therapist rescheduling to a better time, to the yummy dinner we had.

Boss is trying to kill me with her attitude, but I let it go in one ear and out the other - recognizing that she is having a bad day and trying to bring me down too - and I won't have any part of it.

I'm liking life!!!!!!!!

January 20, 2006
2:27 pm
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I am very Happy for you alicat! Love your positive attitude!

January 20, 2006
4:03 pm
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mamabear
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Congrats Ali,
I'm happy for you 🙂

January 20, 2006
4:07 pm
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((ali))) glad all is working great in your life!

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