Challenge Accepted

My coach sends me links to blogs, podcasts, articles, book reviews, etc on a daily basis. At first I felt it was information overload, but now I’m understanding more why she does it. Some stick, and some don’t.  What works for me may not necessarily work for you.  There is one specific email from her that I keep going back to.  It’s a blog post about the Phoenix, the bird who dies over and over again.  See full post here.  It’s about transformation…being actively involved in the destruction of your old self and the re-birth of your new self. While I appreciate the message, it isn’t what I continually go back to and re-read.

What really hits me with this post is the mention of an old Irish story.  The story is about how souls request to God what they want their human life to look like.   I did a few Google searches to try to find the full story, and couldn’t find anything, so I haven’t actually read it, but I have heard this concept before in different variations.  It never resonated with me until now, when I’m working on giving up alcohol.  The idea that I chose this specific journey appeals to me.  I keep picturing my abstract soul (which if you’re interested, is sparkly and purple in my head) having a conversation with God and telling Him that as a human I want to be challenged.  That I want to be tested and given an opportunity to come out stronger, more resilient, more mindful and more self-loving in the end.  In answering my request, God chose to give me my challenge in the form of alcohol (more specifically -vodka).

Believing that I actually chose to experience this struggle with alcohol abuse, and believing that the choice was due to a desire to develop my soul really helps me accept where I am today.  It gives me a reason to beat this.  I don’t feel like a failure because I can’t have a healthy relationship with alcohol…I was meant to go through this so I can come out better on the other side.  The funny part is, I’m an extremely competitive person, and thinking about this as a challenge to myself rather than a promise to myself motivates me more.  I’ve broken so many promises to myself over the last year, when it comes to drinking and it didn’t bother me.  But now – looking at it as a challenge – my human self doesn’t want to lose to my spirit self (yet they both win if human self wins).

Challenge accepted.

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2 Responses to Challenge Accepted

  1. mirandajeanaali says:

    Reblogged this on Living Clean.


  2. Get Well with a Get Well Job
    by Jeff Rosenspan of Warrior’s Path

    In the past year I’ve helped more than 150 adults in recovery look for jobs and get their lives back on track. As a job placement coach who also runs sober houses, I make it my personal mission to get employment for each and every able resident. At Warrior’s Path, we’ve found that the best way to stay sober is to stay active, whether that means full-time employment, part-time shifts, volunteer work, fellowship, or 12-step work. I’m known for giving motivational speeches to every newcomer; I typically open with something like this: The world needs you to contribute; get out there and show us what you can do!

    Many adults in recovery come to us as career-changers or employment re-starters. In early sobriety, it is best to humble yourself and start at the bottom. We affectionately refer to minimum wage positions as “Get Well” jobs. These jobs may not be glamorous, but they come with just the right perks: a regular paycheck, dependable hours, and a chance to demonstrate responsibility, even if that means just showing up on time. Holding yourself accountable can be tough in early sobriety, so an employer can be an excellent motivational tool to keep you on track. If you know you’re waking up early for work tomorrow, you’re less likely to abuse drugs or alcohol the night before your early shift. Employers can be just as effective as your AA/NA sponsors; they can make sure you’re sober by linking your continued employment to your sobriety. You’ll stay sober, and you’ll literally get paid to do it! How cool is that?

    We use the acronym CRADLE for the best places to look for work. CRADLE jobs include: Caregiving, Retail and sales, Administration, Delivery, Labor, and Entertainment (restaurants, movie theaters, sports arenas, concert venues, et cetera). Any of those jobs will include on-time shift starts and opportunities for career advancement down the road. You’ll stand out if you work hard, complete a full shift, and remain polite and professional. You should be doing that stuff anyway, so you might as well be in a place that appreciates and rewards that behavior. For that reason, minimum wage is the best environment. Once you’re a manager, your sales and performance will matter more than your attitude and punctuality. That’s why management is not ideal for early sobriety. The best Get Well job will be a position that has the same goals as you: schedule, effort, honesty, and teamwork.

    The absolute first place to start is a resume. A clean, logical, and organized resume can make all the difference. It shows that you are serious about your future. Try to follow these Get Well Resume Rules: (1) Make sure your e-mail address is professional and includes your full name, (2) For “Recent Professional Experience” you should list three to five jobs that together demonstrate three to five years of experience, (3) For “Skills” you should list things you enjoy doing, and (4) For “Education” you should include any classes you liked, certification you’ve achieved, and team sports you’ve played. This process should take roughly 30 minutes if done correctly, and it’s a really good investment.

    So, take a 30-minute break today from your endless clicking on or and make a new resume. Then print 20 copies, walk out your front door, and pound the pavement. Visit every business in a one-mile radius, because walking to work sure beats waiting for the bus. If you start from the bottom and work hard, you’ll get the solid foundation you need to make it through early sobriety. You can do it, I believe in you.


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