"Pletcher and Bartolameolli are undisputed experts on the subject of co-sex addiction.  They know more about it than anyone I know and have presented  an expose that with great clarity supersedes anything I have read before."

– John Bradshaw

Friday, October 28, 2011

Focus on self....

In our cosex addiction recovery, we surrender to the discipline taught us in the 12 steps including "praying only for the knowledge of our Higher Power's will for us and the courage to carry that out."

This remains a challenge to my ego still after many years in the program. Often I wonder if my Higher Power really knows what is best for those I love and how could I really let go of my own attempts to control the outcome.

Then there is the concern that I might not get that new home, or my partner, friend or family member may not do what I think they should do in the best interest of my relationship with them.

To really continue the intention and practice of "praying only for the knowledge of my Higher Power's will for me and the courage to carry that out" without using my time and energy for obsessing on what others in my life should do continues to be my stretch behavior. I can begin with where I am at and continually practice focusing only on myself. I can release those I love to this Higher Power and, again, focus on myself. While perfection in this behavior may not be attainable, I know I can make progress over time.

It is a practice that I bring mindfully to my prayer and meditation time daily.

Twelve Step recovery and the discipline of the 12 steps is not an easy spiritual path. It requires determination and continued surrender. Our progress and use of daily program tools offer us the privilege of a daily reprieve from our self-centered attachments.

Today I am able to focus only on my connection to a Higher Power and in my surrender to this intention, I bless those I love and care about as well.

Blessings on your journey,


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Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Continued to take personal inventory....

The 12 steps continue to teach and mentor me through my spiritual life. Every problem that I encountered can be bettered through the use of one of these 12 steps. At times I own my powerlessness and see attachments to my own self-will and ego wounds. Other times, I am able to connect with a Higher Power and turn a situation or difficulty over to a divine perspective. There are other times as well where I take action and review my part in an upset or challenging situation. When appropriate I make amends to someone else, myself or simply, yet powerfully, change my own behavior for a living amends. Here are some guidelines for Continuing to take personal inventory and when we were wrong, promptly admitting it:

1) Keep your prayer and meditation practice alive and well. This will keep my connection with the Divine vibrant and the path for insight open. I will see more clearly my own behavior and be able to think before I speak and react in any given situation; minimizing the need to make amends for my behavior.

2) Often our amends are to ourselves for a lack of boundaries, self-care or not trusting our intuition. Then we are hurt or blindsided by someone else's bad behavior. We can learn these lessons quickly by going within and developing those internal and external boundaries. We deserve to care well for ourselves.

3) An amends to those we are closest to in our lives can simply be a form of apology for how our behavior may have hurt them. There doesn't have to be a long and drawn out explanation, nor do we always need to fully understand the intricacies of all our internal motivations manifested in our relationship behavior with others. A simple apology for our behavior does the trick.

4) Forgiving ourselves and adjusting our behavior to include better self-care makes a difference in our lives. We are on a journey in life, learning to live with values aligned to recovery and new way of living. Our journey of self-love and high functioning teaches us to adjust when necessary and continually grow in wisdom and maturity, forgiving our own transgressions along the way.

One of the greatest gifts of my 12 step recovery journey is seeing myself welcome mature individuals with a great capacity to connect and grow with me. I no longer have to take responsibility for others' bad behavior and know that I deserve the same care and love from others that I give freely. Attracting healthful, kind and responsible behavior from others is one of the greatest gifts of recovery.

Blessings on your journey, Sally

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Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Continued to take personal inventory....

Interestingly enough, I've had two people in the last month take my personal inventory. These are people who claim to be committed to a spiritual journey and work a 12 step program. Initially I was stunned, then went into shame, had some healthful grief and anger and now see the blessing in the experiences with both of them.

One of these people mirror to me grandiosity; a belief in my own uniqueness. This grandiosity lets me off the hook of being responsible for my behavior or honoring of others' boundaries. Because "I am special" I do not have to play by the same rules and can blame others when things do not go my way, rather than see my part.

The other situation mirrored to me the difficulty that I have with closeness and intimacy. Often, I will push my husband away or those I love the most because being loved or "seen" by others is so frightening to me. I am not immune from the effects of my own survival behaviors and must stay awake to my own self-sabotaging.

One of the most powerful tools and practices to assist us in our intimate connections with others is the Tenth Step which tells us to "continue to take personal inventory and when we were wrong, promptly admit it." This practice allows us to stay connected to others and keep the focus on ourselves. We are not responsible when others behave badly. We can keep ourselves in integrity by honoring our own values and reflect on our part in any upset. Once we do this, we take appropriate action to make amends and let go of the results; whether the other person does the same or not.

Living the 12 steps in our lives in not always easy. The rewards, however, keep us grounded in our own values and open to creating authentic relationships with others. In seeing our part in any relationship, growth will occur, whether or not we are met by another taking the same level of maturity and self-responsibility. We grow in intimate relationship with ourselves when we see our part and over time will attract this kind of maturity and self-responsibility in our relationships with others.

In both of these relationships, I see my own opportunity to grow in detachment, keeping the focus on myself, letting go of those not willing to be responsible for their own personal inventory and then attracting more and more mature relationships.

Today I affirm that I deserve relationships with others who have a level of maturity similar to my own. I affirm self-responsibility and connections that support authenticity and honesty and an ever deepening connection to self, spirit and each other. The Tenth Step is an important tool for maintaining our intimate connections with others deserving our attention, energy and spirits.

Blessings on your journey,


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