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4-21-19 Advocate for Yourself

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Advocate for Yourself

Advocate:  A person who speaks or writes in support or defense of a person or cause. An advocate of peace.

In my addiction I was ignorant, not stupid. I didn’t know what to do or how to begin healing. Today, as I learn about ways to work with my difficulties, I act less from ignorance, but may occasionally to do the wrong thing out of fear. That is a wrong choice, not who I am. I find these instances are fewer and farther between these days, and don’t last as long. I’m learning to choose the braver way of compassion and dignity, not fear. To respect and advocate FOR myself.

 Being your own advocate means that you ask for what you need while respecting the needs of others. For example, if you are at a store and a clerk ignores you, ask in a polite way to be served. Selfadvocacy is asking for what you need in a direct, respectful manner. 

“And we have ceased fighting anything or anyone…” including ourselves.

What I know now is that we don’t create or change our circumstances with just our words. We create our lives with our feelings. If your feelings and beliefs are vibrating an energy of lack, that is what you draw to yourself. If your energies are vibrating a positive acceptance and engagement, even with your difficulties, that is what you will be offering others and attracting to yourself. Which will you make the effort to advocate for?

When we need to grieve we grieve, when we celebrate, we celebrate. And we always enter any situation honestly and with kindness, not needing to force or avoid anything

If you need to think about a circumstance or person, you can do it in a mindful, aware manner. Don’t deny your feelings, and don’t let them overwhelm you.  Include them in your thought process, but keep a sufficient distance from turmoil.  Know that, first and foremost, your peace of mind, your SELF LOVE, is vital if you’re going to process any difficult situation in a healthy way, instead of continuing to flounder around in a confusing and painful manner.

Only when you LOVE yourself unconditionally, believe in yourself and your worthiness, and see others as spiritual beings, can you realize the connection and compassion you also have for others. Sometimes it may feel like there are two of you: one who’s dealing with worldly things and is too often self-centered, and one with a spiritual side, who mostly shows up in prayer, meditation and in some meetings. One is the head and the other is the heart—the sunlight of the spirit. Bring your awareness to what your heart feels first, then decide what to do in your head. Always advocate for the heart. When you begin placing your heart first, you can feel the uplifting of your spirit and a healthiness that’s beginning to be a part of who you are.

Be brave, make mistakes, and be compassionate and forgiving about that. Then keep moving forward, by being forgiving and compassionate towards all.

To advocate for ourselves is harder than advocating for a cause we care about. To advocate for ourselves, we need to get honest and look at what it is that’s causing us to feel unworthy or aggressive. This means bringing an awareness to behaviors that we have used for years to “get by.” Replacing an old behavior takes time and effort, and begins with an understanding of WHAT is causing us unhappiness. It is not other people or circumstances. Those can present us with challenging situations, but our happiness and sense of self-worth are always rooted in how we feel about ourselves.

The spiritual life has to be lived, not just considered and hoped for. What do you do every morning to touch into the sunlight of the spirit? What do you do during the day to keep yourself on track? What do you do at night to review and celebrate? These may be behaviors that seem like a good idea, BUT, you need to put the energy out to actually do them. Advocate for yourself.

If you feel you do not deserve that sense of peace and happiness, realize that the only thing keeping you from that spirit is your doubt. The spirit is always there, it is not a matter of if you think you deserve or do not deserve it, it IS there. You choose to access it or not.  Only you create the clouds that obscure the sun and only you, in touching into your energies, inspirations and spirituality, uncover the sun.

When we choose the sun, all things great and small, difficult and easy are fully experienced and appreciated. There’s no sense of, “If only I…” or “if they would…” or “I want… I have to… I can’t.” Instead, there is a sense of health and confidence that permeates all of our experiences—those which are happy and those which are difficult—because we consistently advocate for ourselves. We consider what others say and see if there is anything of value to consider. We do not permit another’s opinion to shape our own sense of wellbeing or to demean us.

If you are not advocating for and supporting yourself, you are either in neutral, which is ok sometimes, or you are in reverse (disapproving and rejecting yourself). If you knew someone who was often disapproving and disrespecting you, you probably would not continue with that relationship, which would be the healthy thing to do.  Don’t disrespect yourself, be your own best friend! Choose to live with someone, “you”, who likes you.

If you feel the grey weight of being unworthy or feeling sorry for yourself, that’s ok. Just feel it. Sometimes we go there. But don’t indulge and promote that negativity. Know you can begin taking care of yourself, right now, even with the grey clouds.

Start small; sleep is very important! More important than that game or program you watch.       Eat healthy. Do a morning and evening contemplation, prayer and meditation. Get outside and get some exercise. Take time for yourself and make time for community.

Know when you are finding fault with others or yourself and replace it with finding small things to be grateful for. Yes, really. Do you have a bed to sleep in? Food for breakfast? Shoes? A washcloth and toothbrush? Not everyone does.

When you feel sorry for yourself, find a way to be useful to someone else. Even in a small way.

Feel the effort that is needed to advocate for yourself. You need to actively say no to some old behaviors, and use the spirit to inform you. That effort feels like a burden at first, but soon, with some momentum, you feel like you are almost flying.

May I find the strength to be kind. To accept when I am not, and be inspired to act NOW in enfolding myself with my love and care. I choose to be my own best advocate.

“Ancient bonds are breaking, moving on and changing sides.
Dreaming of a new day, cast aside the other way.”  Pink Floyd

How do you fill your bucket? One drop at a time.

The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.

The great arises out of small things that are honored and cared for.

Heart Of Recovery web site  –  fcheartofrecovery.com