We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.
–Winston Churchill

As we grow spiritually, we naturally become more generous. It’s a quality of a well-developed person. Rather than being anxious over whether we will have enough – and rather than hungrily seeking more and more – we become more openhearted. We feel more abundant within ourselves and find that our spirit of generosity even adds to our own abundant feelings. Where we see a need, we help out.

A generous person doesn’t need to shower others with material gifts. The most precious gifts are things such as paying attention to others, respecting them for who they are, and giving our time. Often a material gift is a symbol of the good feelings in a relationship. In our generosity, we also learn to receive others’ gifts to us with humility and respect.

Today I take pleasure in my spirit of generosity.

Dear Richard (House Manager),

My heart felt thanks I owe you for making my stay at Camelback Recovery welcoming. You should open a fast food deli in your next life where I hope to see you again. Again, thanks for making this old Kentucky boy feel at home.

Sincerely,

Mike

So, the boyfriend calls, says he’s going hiking with his buddies for a week, cancels his date with you and says he hopes you won’t be mad.

Or the bank calls and says you’re overdrawn, and you don’t know how that can be. You’ve been trying to carefully watch your deposits and checks. You’ve gone out of your way not to mess up. This can’t be right!

What do you do when life seems to force you to react? You can panic, become anxious, yell, and respond with a counterattack. But that probably won’t solve the problem. And it may turn things into a brawl.

Or you can calm down. Breathe deeply. Tell yourself to relax. Say as little as possible, if that’s possible, while you’re upset and disturbed. If a problem or disturbance that’s not fair interrupts your life, try responding by saying hmmm. Then calm down and decide what you need to do.

God, help me start sailing through life with more ease by learning to relax and let life be.

I have been out of town for a long 4-day weekend and I have a ton of things that I need to get done over the next few days. I am busy as it is and the taking the long 4-day weekend just added to the workload. I worked as diligently as possible yesterday and I was getting a lot done. However, even though I was working swiftly, I was not grounded and I was not totally thinking clearly. I left my house to run an errand and of course, right when I left the house, the sky got dark and a monsoon moved in. Once I got back home, the rain was pouring and wind was gusting. I put my phone in my pocket and ran into the house as fast as possible. Once inside, I went back to work on my computer. I was not able to find my phone and I could not figure out where I left it? Maybe I left it in the car? I couldn’t remember. So I was going to wait until the monsoon passed to go out to my car. Thirty minutes later, after the monsoon has passed, I heard a knock at my front door. A neighbor found my phone on the ground in a puddle of water. What am I going to do know?! I really need my phone. Needless to say, I am even more anxious and I need prayer and meditation, yoga, and a 12-step meeting to help me calm down. Being anxious, being reactive, and being in a state of panic never pays off. If I was calm and grounded, maybe I would not have rushed into the house so quickly and maybe I would not have dropped my phone? Maybe I would have realized that I might have dropped my phone outside and maybe I would have caught it before too late? I am feeling pretty calm and grounded now. This after doing yoga and meditating. I will also be hitting a 12-step meeting tonight. Being grounded and thinking clearly is one of my favorite things about sobriety. However, I need to remember that when things happen that can throw me for a loop, I just need to calm down, breathe, and take the next indicated action step.

I alone can do it. But I can’t do it alone.
–Anonymous

We’re the luckiest people alive because we don’t have to do anything alone! Whether we have a new assignment to tackle, a new relationship to cultivate, a new boss to please, we’ll never fail as long as we rely on the program, our sponsors, and our Higher Power.

That doesn’t mean we won’t have trying times and some failures. But the companionship we need for handling the difficult periods will never be denied us. Perhaps we think it will. Maybe that’s why we try to do too much alone.

We didn’t end up in this Twelve Step program as the result of living peaceful, productive lives. We’re here because we got scared. Our lives weren’t working. And they won’t work now if we insist on doing it alone. This is our second chance. Let’s take it.

I will seek the support I need from friends and God today. I’ll have a good day because of this.

I have no clue where I would be without my sponsor, people at 12-step meetings, and my friends in recovery. My support network means the world to me. Throughout every single day I find support at 12-step meetings, talking with my sponsor on the phone or meeting him in person, phone calls, seeing friends in recovery around town and in yoga, and helping a newcomer. When I am alone, I am left to my own devices. Being left to my own devices can easily lead me down the wrong path. I want to stay on my path of long term recovery and I am going to keep coming back.