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Guilt, Shame, Worry and Fear - from the Health and Healing Series at SupportNet.ca - Resources for Your Recovery.

Recovery is learning to enjoy life - without the use of alcohol or drugs that alter mind or mood.

It is treatment for the condition of addiction - an approach to the challenges of life - and a path to personal growth.

Recovery requires us to learn - about the true nature of addiction.

It may be personalized - but it has its necessary Principles and its Ways.

The Principles of Recovery provide direction - to the choices that we face each day.

The Ways of Recovery provide us with tools - that help us to heal - and to enjoy life on life’s terms.

This Learning Seminar helps us to understand the feelings of Guilt, Shame, Worry and Fear -

What you need to know about these feelings - and how to avoid their control of your life.

Addiction and Feeling

Feelings are signals that arise in our body - in response to the events of our lives, the things that we do or the stuff on our mind.

The problem with feelings is not that they occur - but that we ignore, hold to them over time - or allow them to overtake us.

The use of alcohol or drugs often begins as a way to change feeling - to calm or avoid certain feelings - to magnify or to manufacture others.

But reliance on a substance to control feeling can give rise to all manner of problems.

Feelings not accepted are signals ignored. Mistakes are made - and learning does not occur.

We do not grow in ability to relate to our feelings - to sit with them - and to consider their meaning.

Stressful feelings are not erased by alcohol or drugs. They are only postponed to another day.

Memories bounce back and we must run faster.

We come to fear our own feelings - until a day when we cannot use - and we have no choice but to face our self straight on.

Guilt and Shame

Guilt is a sick feeling that comes with the belief that I have done something I know to be wrong.

Steal today - and feel the guilt of a thief.

Shame is a burning feeling that comes with the belief that I am a bad person.

Steal every day for two weeks - and come to feel the shame of being a thief.

There are countless ways that the compulsive demands of addiction may leave a trail of guilt and shame.

And the use of drugs is fueled in turn - by increasing need to distract one’s self from these feelings.

Early efforts in recovery are challenged by restless memories of the past - and the feelings of guilt and shame that they stir in the body today.

Worry and Fear

Worry is a recurrent fantasy of things that may not go our way.

It is a habit of mind that gives rise to anxiety and fear.

Fear is an alert, nervous vigilance to the possibility of threat.

It may give rise to anger - or it pulls us to retreat from what we believe is the source of our fear.

The use of drugs may begin as a way to calm or to avoid worry or fear.

But addiction is a compulsive habit of avoidance - and as fear brings avoidance - so avoidance brings fear.

The more that we run - it seems the more that we fear.

Recovery of Feeling

The use of alcohol or drugs begins as a way to change feelings.

But for the addicted person it ends as a fearful avoidance of a mountain of suppressed feeling.

Add to this a sensitized brain - that seems to magnify every experience inside of us - and you begin to imagine the force that keeps the addicted person on the run from their self.

Early recovery is a time of raw, exaggerated and disturbing states of feeling.

These feelings are stirred by memories that are real, imagined, distorted or mistaken.

It is a time that requires strict boundaries - education and support.

Boundaries in mind and time are necessary to protect against overwhelming feelings that intrude from the past.

Don’t Go There - This Too Shall Pass and One Day at a Time - are the teachings that apply.

Early recovery is not a time to stir or explore its sick and exaggerated feelings.

It is a time to learn to calm, settle, distract and ride out the many feelings that may occur.

Conduct your self differently today. Learn to stay in the day and to let go of the rest.

If disturbing feelings stir urges to use - talk with your recovery supports. Spend time at meetings. Apply the ways of relapse prevention.

Do things differently today. Adopt the Principles and Ways of Recovery. Apply them to the challenge of these disturbing feelings - as they affect your life today.

Deal with the issues that most challenge you right now.

The past is the past and the future exists only within our mind.

Let go of the timeless fantasies of mind - and learn to ground yourself now.

SupportNet offers several resources to help you to learn these ways.

Healing from the past does not mean to dive in to all of the issues, events and feelings that have ever occurred.

Healing from the past means to learn the difference between what is past and what is now.

Learn to deal with the ways that the past intrudes on your day today. Grow in your abilities as you face bits of the past - as they turn up in this day - one thought and one feeling at a time.

Worry is a useless and sick habit of mind. It is common in recovery - but also plagues some people throughout their life.

The way to break this habit is to learn to let it go - right now and one thought at a time.

When you notice yourself lost in a worrisome thought - let it go - right now.

Say the Serenity Prayer quietly within your mind. Rest your mind on its words. Then move on with your day. Do this once or a thousand times a day - whenever you notice worry.

The root of the problem does not lie in events that have occurred in years past.

The root of this problem is in sick habits of mind and feeling - now worsened by the impact of alcohol and drugs.

Grow in your recovery and your abilities - in your capacity to deal with the thoughts and feelings that come in to your mind today.

The solution to the problem of feelings in recovery does not lie in the past.

The solution is in how you cope and conduct your self today - the only day that healing can occur.

In Summary

Avoidance of feeling gives them control of our life.

The past is the past and that the future only exists within our mind.

Learn ways to ground and to settle your self today.

Apply these to feelings that arise in your day - and grow in ability to face your fear.

You have now reached the end of Guilt, Shame, Worry and Fear.

Look for this and other Learning Seminars at www.SupportNet.ca - Resources for Your Recovery.