"I look inside myself to find my peace"

Tuesday

Music and Song - Allow Yourself To Feel The Heal

Have you ever noticed how music or a song can lift you up? Even when you're at an uncertain time of your life music/song can reach down inside of you and help you feel better. Even if for a few moments. Its those few moments we need to hold on to that help us to come back from the emotional pain caused by something that may have gone wrong in our lives. Music/song is a healing thing, a tool. It won't solve your troubles but it can be used as a tool to help in feeling better and healing oneself. When we feel better, we are more positive and productive. We can see clearer to finding better solutions. If you're like most humans you really don't like feeling down and out. And so long as you keep your heart open to good things you can lift yourself out of a bad mood or the emotional pain by allowing yourself to feel the healing and uplifting emotion that music/song can bring us. Of course when times call for us to grieve we should always allow for that emotion to run its course. You can't change the fact that there is a lost loved one. Music/song when grieving for a loved one, can bring about happier times you shared because it allows us to remember how much our lost loved one enjoyed that certain song. Or music/song can bring about a happy memory of an experience we shared with a lost loved one. At those times, hold on to those memories and emotions. It can help us to heal.

Grieve when you must, but don't hold on to the grief. Allow it to leave you as well. This goes for anger also. Although at times, anger can be a good motivator we should never hold on to the emotion of anger either. It will harden your heart and burn a hole in your soul. However if you like music, which everyone seems to be touched by some kind or another kind of music, and you're inspired by it, you can also be healed by it. Point of interest: It has been proven that when people are allowed to listen to their favorite music while working, they are actually more productive. Even cows produce more milk when allowed to listen to music. Let yourself hear and feel that music/song. Let it help you to let go of things you may be feeling that may not be good for you to feel. These negative feelings could be what is holding you back from whatever you aspire to achieve. Just like that old saying: "..music soothes the savage beast.." it can also soothe the downsides of life. None of us are impervious to the downsides of life. No matter who you are or where you are in your life, downsides will always rear its awful head at some time or another. Life is full of tribulations. What matters is how do we deal with the throws of life. We should deal with them in a way that can be positive and add to our growing as a spiritual being?  Not religious but spiritual. There is a difference.

When things occur that are out of our control, at first, we may not want to feel or hear anything good because we are adjusting to the feelings of impact of the negative occurrance. Give yourself alittle time to get your head around what has happened to you. But don't dwell in sadness. Then once the sudden abrupt effect of whatever painful or negative experience has eased off alittle, let it go, give it to the universe, God, Buddha or whatever you conceive your higher power to be. Then open your heart and your mind and fill it with the good feelings of healing you recieve by whatever favorite music or song you enjoy. It may sound ridiculous to some people, but maybe thats because they've never tried to let the harmony one recieves from music/song to help in the healing process. Just sitting there comfortably, quiet for a few moments. Allowing the sound to flow through the air, through our minds and body.

 
Let your mind relax, let the hurt and anger float away from you. Ask the universe to help you recover from whatever it may be that is causing disruption in your life. It can be like that while listening to music. Or it can be a more physical experience where you dance around and sing along with your favorite song. Whichever way you choose to help yourself heal. Try it with music/song. You may be surprised to find just how healing this process can be. For those who understand and grasp what I'm trying to say here put on your favorite music/song right now and energize yourself. Allow yourself to feel the heal. It can be very helpful for us all in times of distress. Carry one of your favorite songs or music with you throughout your day. Even if you only hum it to yourself. And if you get the chance to hear it again, throughout your day, then get REenergized by listening to it. Embrace it and allow the good feelings you receive from it to uplift you. It can truly be an inspiration. Enjoy the day.



Copyright(c)2013.Music and Song - Allow Yourself To Feel The Heal.Written by Sherrie Vitello.All Rights Reserved.

Saturday

Sometimes You Need To Take A Break From Your Life


I had the priviledge recently to visit my family. I'll be honest I didn't know how things were going to go because we haven't seen each other in years. Even though we've kept intouch by way of the internet. Altho' I knew my family loved me I think I was more concerned about how I felt about myself. I invisioned having a positive, happy time and thats exactly what happened. Perhaps what they say about visualizing things is true. I made a promise to myself before I left. That I would keep to a positive outlook throughtout the entire experience and stay open to any constructive criticism I may receive. You see, I was actually on a quest. A quest to find out how to go about the sudden changes that have taken place in my life. I needed to find away to heal and renew. Honestly I was fearful of what could happen if I didn't embrace these changes. The problem was, I wasn't sure how. My daughter, who is now a mother herself is one of the most spiritual wise old souls I have the honor of knowing. She will speak the truth about how she see's things even if it may seem alittle harsh, but not to be mean more like being real. I believe thats a good thing. In fact it was she who said to me: "Mom.. sometimes you need to take a break from your life!" That one sentence spoke volumes that struck a chord in my heart. I knew at that point I had to go visit my family. Because of the changes that had suddenly taken place in my life, I needed to take a break from it. I embraced everything about my trip. Getting ready to go, packing, making sure everything was secure. Taking the train ride, riding through the states. Talking to my seat partners and enjoying the conversations without making anything a negative experience. Altho' I was tired, I truly enjoyed the ride.

Being there, visiting my family I realized just how busy and full their lives are too. Here I thought I had such a busy schedule. But being in observence of how many things my daughters do everyday was amazing. It made me think of how busy I was too when I was younger and raising my girls and all the responsibilities that came with it. I was proud to see how well they've adjusted to the throws of life. Playing with my grandchildren was awesome. It was so uplifting for me to have fun with them, playing games, holding them and raising them up high, chasing them as the tickle-monster, playing hide and seek. Hearing their pure heartfelt laughter was so beautiful. It was very fulfilling and my heart was full of love and joy. Visiting and sharing in all of the activities I did with my daughters made me feel so close to them. I even got my hair styled in a French braid, which I love, by my daughter Gina. My youngest daughter, by 4 minutes, Michelle was able to visit and help with decorating of the Christmas tree, we had so much fun. Decorating the Christmas tree, helping the little ones place decorations on the tree. Lifting my grand daughter up so she could place the star at the top of the tree. That was, I felt, an honor. And in all the mist of this joyful occassion I would sometimes come back to thinking about my circumstances that bought me to visit my family in the first place. When my oldest daughter Celeste, and I were alone, just sitting on the porch enjoying the evening air. We would talk about my circumstances. I was looking for ways to feel better about things. To be able to carry on without things getting me down. My daughter, in her "real but loving wisdom" told me that the universe will open up and show me the way. Perhaps what has bought me to this time of my life is the universe in action. Making it so I have to face my demons or fears and get up, get out and do the thing I think I cannot do. Developing a home-based business over the last 5 years has caused me to become more of a homebody. But now..things are different and I have to "get back out there."

Even though I am aware of what she said, hearing it from someone who loves me solidifies what I already knew. It actually gave me wings. Because sometimes we all need to be reminded or just hear the words. As the days got closer to my going back home. I was feeling better about what I had to face even though I wasn't sure how to go about it. But I believed it would all come clear in time. Sometimes when things happen to us we feel we need to regress or hide. We don't want to be a bother to anyone. But if we open our hearts and allow the universe to open our lives we can find that there are those who are happy to help, console, guide and just have an open ear. I figured I could handle everything that life throws at me, but I found I was made whole and even stronger by allowing things to unfold the way they are meant to unfold. To embrace changes and to have faith in myself. And my faith was uplifted and restored to a higher level than I thought possible. I truly enjoyed the time I spent visiting my family, hugging them and laughing. I was so happy to be able to visit my mother and my oldest brother too. Surprised and unexpected, when I hugged my mom tears were in my eyes, but they were happy tears. It was the right time to visit and shake myself lose from, what I conceived as my safety zone in order to get myself rejuvenated and restored. The ride home felt good. I felt more secure in what I had to do and how I viewed things going on in my life. I realized while riding back on the train, that many people know exactly whats going on in the world and many people have the same feelings, fears, desires, opinions and thoughts that I have as well. So in realizing that I actually wasn't alone in my journey. That gave me a better sense of society too.

Every step that I took was meant to happen. Every person I've met along the way was meant to be. And thats how I saw it. Its funny, you know, when we feel lost or unsure we should always look for the lesson we are meant to learn. Whatever happens in our lives is another day to learn how to handle it. As long as I can go to sleep at night and think to myself that I did all I could today to be productive, to accomplish things that needed to be done, to allow myself to live life on lifes terms and make the best out of it. Then I know I'll be alright. Even when things seem uncertain when we view them as what we need to learn from the situation in order to grow as a human being, things will unfold for us so long as we allow them to do so. Keeping the belief. On to the next!

Dedicated with love to my 3 daughters, grandchildren, mother and brother.


Copyright(c)2013.SometimesYouNeedToTakeABreakFromYourLife.Written by Sherrie Vitello.All Rights Reserved.

Living By A Code - Its not just a knights tale.

So I'm feeling a little dismayed this morning. I know I'm not the first to feel that way? It's not about being upset at any of my family or friends, we're fine, its more about our world. The emotional state of our society. So not to make this political, I won't elaborate on the crises in our country(or should I say the politicians.) I'll keep it to how our social structure makes us feel. You might feel this way too while looking for the rainbow through the clouds. At times I get disheartened because I feel like we humans are so messed up. So many inject all of their power into such negative things. A lot of people are so quick to jump into violent-mode and hit some one. As if beating someone up should be praised. Others are affraid to be hurt so they do nothing when violence occurs. Not to say that's a bad reaction, because it isn't. No one wants to confront and get hurt. This violence has spread, like a virus, in our schools, bullying on the internet too. Young people killing themselves. Like a snowball rolling down hill, it keeps getting bigger and bigger. Some say it starts at home. Parents have to stop being their childs friend and become the rearing parents they should be. The friendship will come later when the child has grown up. There maybe some validity in that statement.

Mental illness is very apparent in our society, like many other societies on our planet. Yet we carry on as if it doesn't exist. Then we have people who are so judgemental that they forget they too have their own faults. We can get so complacent sometimes that we end up losing out, getting hurt, or even dying. A lot of people get angered at others short comings instead of trying to understand why things may be that way for that person. They turn away instead of trying to help them find a better way. Some people are just too busy with their own lives to care. Some people place so much emphasis on material things that they forget the true value of good character, empathy and especially unbiased love. Those who may be doing better than others are quickly looked down upon and quickly criticized whenever possible. Its madness! So with all of this negativity going on around us, how is it possible to keep to a positive outlook? Well..I don't know about everyone else but what I've learned works and I try to apply it everyday. There are guidelines or measures one can take. I prefer to call it "living by a code."  *The Old Code. Whenever possible try to be helpful. Its a nice feeling to be appreciated. But don't over do it and don't get walked on. There are some people that will take your kindness for granted, so be wise about it.

When you see violence, be the quiet hero and call for help. It could be too dangerous to interfere directly. It just may save someone's life. If you can spare any change, give to those who are on the street asking for help. Do you know how it feels to know you won't eat good today or you'll have to sleep on the street? Dumpster diving is not a recommended diet. Even if they are not homeless, or they're being dishonest, or they are drunks, give anyway because you never know what has caused this or how their lives got that way. The kindness you show today will be returned to you tomorrow. [The saddest thing I saw the other day was an old woman holding a sign asking for help. I felt empathy and sadness because I know I could be that old woman and I thought, most likely, that she is someone's mother.] Be honest and don't try to win the approval of others by making things up about yourself or others. It will only come back on you someday and bite you in the ass. When you have menial things that must get done, don't just let them lie, take care of them first, complete it and be done with it. It may surprise you how good that makes you feel. It always reminds me of clearing out my minds closet.

And last but not least, keep your dwelling and your possessions well taken care of and neat because this shows your state of mind or your emotional state. Remind yourself upon waking, everyday, that this day is going to be a good, positive day. And let nothing deprive you of that feeling. We are in control of our thoughts and our perceptions of how we see things, how we deal with things and how we think about things. This is reflected in our lives and how we live it. I'm not saying that I know it all because I don't, no one does. But by living by a code we build structure in our lives which is the base for purpose. A life without purpose can be an empty shell. There will be days of sadness but its up to us to decide if we should allow that sadness to bury our positive state of mind or not. Grieve when its called for otherwise don't dwell in sorrow. Strive to be happy. And when those negative things rise up and try to bring us down, we have to get busy and convert those negatives into positives. And never forget: "To thine own self be true" that saying holds more meaning today and value than you think. It stands right along side of being honest. Lying has a way of catching up to us and its usually not a pleasant experience. So don't sabotage yourself. We were not put on this earth to be sad, hateful or abusive to ourselves or to others and yet society seems to follow that stream as a social structure.

Since we are the ones that create how we feel about our lives and how we live our lives, then we can surely change our social structure for the better. But it starts within our own individual selves. You matter. Things matter. We need to care. Living by a code is not just a knights tale. But a better way to live our lives. Lead the way by letting your light shine and others will follow. Enjoy the day.

*The Old Code -
From Lord Wilhelm Da Kalavo

A knight is sworn to valour
His heart knows only virtue
His blade defends the helpless
His might upholds the weak
His word speaks only truth
His wrath undoes the wicked.


 Copyright(c)2013.Living By A Code-Its not just a knights tale.Written by Sherrie Vitello. All Rights Reserved.           

Wednesday

The Struggle Within




 
Live in the moment, not the past. Although your past may have been your detriment it has also been your teacher. It should not
hang over your heads like an ominous cloud but as a reminder of who we are not today.  We all come to those forks in the road
when we've lived on addiction avenue. Be it alcohol, drugs, sex, gambling, over eating etc., we are responsible for the
decisions we make as they pertain to our own lives. No one and nothing else is to blame. The struggle within is a constant thing.
And although the road can be hard and even over whelming that doesn't mean we should abuse ourselves and commit slow suicide. In a
clear state of mind, you will see how much you've missed while living in your addictive state.
Sadly some will never come
to that understanding. We go through experiences in our lives with the hope of learning about how to live life. Everyday is a new
start for all of us. We decide as soon as we wake, how our day will be.
Even when stress and absurdities creep in. Its how we
perceive things that will be our compass to how we feel and live. Two things are for certain. It is certain you will end up in jail or
die if you don't stop being an addict. Its only a matter of time. And it is certain you can change your life and get the help
you need to change for the better. Many people have proven that to be a fact. You certainly do have a choice. You choose whether to give in and continue down your path of destruction. Fight the struggle
within you with all of your might. We all deserve to live happily and only by giving into the negatives because they seem to make
things easier, are we defeated by the struggles within. Strive to be happy. 




Copyright(c)2013.The Struggle Within.Written by Sherrie Vitello. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday

Early Prevention Will Save Our Childrens Brains

"Early use of drugs increases a person's chances of more serious drug abuse and addiction." Remember, drugs change brains - and this can lead to addiction and other serious problems. So preventing early use of drugs or alcohol may reduce the risk of progressing to later abuse and addiction." So should we pass a new law for schools to make it mandatory for all children in elementary, middle and high schools to take a course in drug and alcohol abuse? A course that would make them aware of the preventions and reasons why younger people begin to use drugs and alcohol. i.e. peer pressure, family influence, friends influence, TV shows and movies that influence people to use alcohol and drugs. In early adolescence, when children advance from elementary through middle school, they face new and challenging social and academic situations. Often during this period, children are exposed to abusable substances such as cigarettes, alcohol and even marijuana for the first time. When they enter high school, teens may encounter greater availability of drugs, drug abuse by older teens, and social activities where drugs are used. No doubt the temptation can be difficult. 9 times out of 10 children will be exposed to these things by people they consider to be friends.

With parents and teachers working together they can help our children to learn how to cope with these pressures. Helping children to see the damage drugs and alcohol causes their brains, what children can do about it, to give children empowerment and an edge to overcome this epidemic. This will help them along their path when they come into these kinds of situations as they grow. I've heard people say; "When I was young we did all kinds of drugs and drank alcohol whenever we could." I often wonder what percent of those people are really where they want to be in their lives? Drug abuse effects our brains a lot more than you can imagine. Children need to be made aware of the ill-effects drugs and alcohol have on their still-developing brains. The human brain is the most complex organ in the body. This three-pound mass of gray and white matter sits at the center of all human activity. All of the different sections of our brains are meant to work together. You need it to learn, drive a car, to enjoy a meal, to speak, to breathe, to create an artistic masterpiece, and to enjoy everyday activities. In brief, the brain regulates your basic body functions; enables you to interpret and respond to everything you experience; it shapes your thoughts, emotions, and behavior. Early prevention will save our childrens brains.

Drugs are chemicals. They work in the brain by tapping into the brain's communication system and interfering with the way nerve cells normally send, receive, and process information. Although drugs mimic brain chemicals, they don't activate nerve cells in the same way as a natural neurotransmitter and they lead to abnormal messages being transmitted through the network. In a nutshell, drug addiction erodes a person's self-control and ability to make sound decisions, while sending intense impulses to the brain to take drugs. The destruction can be dangerous and deadly. What about science validated programs? Can they really help? Yes! Research shows that these programs have been rationally designed based on current knowledge, rigorously tested, and shown to produce positive results. Scientists have developed a broad range of programs that positively alter the balance between risk and protective factors for drug abuse in families, schools, and communities. While many events and cultural factors affect drug abuse trends, when youths perceive drug abuse as harmful, they reduce their level of abuse. For more information about Drug Abuse Prevention, please visit this link for FREE information.

Parents and Educators - National Institute on Drug Abuse  


 
 
Copyright(c)2013.Early Prevention Will Save Our Childrens Brains. Written by Sherrie Vitello. All Rights Reserved.  

Thursday

Drug Abuse In America - How does it effect our children?

DRUGS ABUSE. It sounds bad, doesn't it? It is bad. It ruins people, it ruins lives, it kills. Did you know that drug abuse can start with children as young as those in elementary school grades? Sad to say it can. Today’s youth face many risks, including drug abuse, violence, and HIV/AIDS. Responding to these risks before they become problems can be difficult.  But by seeing these problems early on and responding to them with care, proper help and understanding, we can do what is needed to help those heading down the destructive path that will only lead to worse outcomes. Drug abuse has serious consequences in our homes, schools, and communities. Researchers [like NIDA- National Institute on Drug Abuse] are also studying older teens who are already using drugs to find ways to prevent further abuse or addiction. You can also find relevant information about drug abuse at: www.drugabuse.gov. Prevention science has made great progress in recent years. Many prevention interventions are being tested in "real-world" settings so they can be more easily adapted for community use. Scientists are studying a broader range of populations and topics. They have identified, for example, effective interventions with younger populations to help prevent risk behaviors before drug abuse occurs.
 
Sometimes people are so busy with their own lives they overlook or ignore a problem such as, drug abuse, becoming a problem. Whether this problem is with themselves, other adults in the home and especially children. Because some parents get so involved with their work and trying to provide for their family, they forget the most important factor of taking care of their family. That is being there for their families. Being an active member of their families development, social structure, activities like school, neighborhood friends and their families, teachers, and other important occurrences in your families lives. Although this can be difficult to do, a parent must make time to the best of their ability to "show up" and be there for their family. Its important to be apart of the development and functions of the family unit. Research has shown that when families that do things together, spend quality time together, they are less likely to have addiction problems than families that live like strangers in the same home.  Of course its not an easy task. This is also why young people that marry will want to plan out their lives together. Plan out having children. Plan to have a plan. Then make that plan the most important part of your lives together. Benjamin Franklin quoted: "If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail!" Something to keep in mind as you travel through your journey.




The risk of becoming a drug abuser involves the relationship among the number and type of risk factors (i.e. deviant attitudes and behaviors) and protective factors (i.e. parental support.) The potential impact of specific risk and protective factors changes with age. For example, risk factors within the family have greater impact on a younger child, while association with drug-abusing peers may be a more significant risk factor for an adolescent. While risk and protective factors can affect people of all groups, these factors can have a different effect depending on a person’s age, gender, ethnicity, culture, and environment. Its a fact that when you plant your seed in "good soil" and nurture your garden, it grows healthy. Well why not the same principle for human beings?  Grant it, we'd be kidding ourselves to think that we are the perfect parent. There is no such thing. But as a parent, we fall back on the positive teachings of our parents, we can grow in wisdom, experience and guidance. Parental monitoring and supervision are critical for drug abuse prevention. These skills can be enhanced with training on rule-setting; techniques for monitoring activities; praise for appropriate behavior; and moderate, consistent discipline that enforces defined family rules.


We all know the destructive nature of drug abuse, as well as alcohol abuse. Prescription drug abuse is more apparent than illegal drugs, in some places. Without people getting involved in this planetary epidemic, we will surely stay on the course to moral crumbling. Our greatest asset is our children, they are the future. With proper efforts we can certainly put a big dent in this problem across America. There is always hope. And depending on how your perpective is about your own life, you have the power to make a difference. Whether you're just starting out as a young adult, or you're a veteran survivor of your youth. We have to care. We have to make ourselves aware of this problem and do something about it. It can start in our own homes, right now! By looking into places for help, such as, local area recovery and rehabilitation services, the cdc - wonder program, doing your own research about preventatives, becoming apart of a clean and sober household, can be the main factor in knowing what to do, when to do it and how to help loved ones that may fall into this very destructive way of life. Even though drug abuse in America is in full force, we can do things about it in our own homes, with our families, our social structure. But we have to be willing to take that step to be involved. Are you willing? Are you able? Then lets get busy!
 
 
Copyright(c)2013.Drug Abuse In America - How does it effect our children? Written by Sherrie Vitello.All Rights Reserved.








 

Wednesday

Planet Earth - We are here to take care of her. But we forget.


If not us.... who will?



Its as though the eagle is saying: "Please help keep our planet beautiful!" Afterall thats why we're really here. I think people just get so wrapped up in surviving that they forget that. Sit back for a moment and get inspired. Feel the beauty we are responsible for. Our planet is our home. We as "the human race", no matter what color, creed, religion, or beliefs, WE are responsible for the place we live. Our beautiful planet. If you were to look into history and see all of the dwindling of wilderness, wildlife species, habitat and trees, you'd either be very angry, upset or heartbroken. Some would be all 3. Mankind can have ALL the money in the world, but what good is it if you can't exist in harmony with your planet?

Some would say that the people that are "in charge" or "in control" of what happens to our planet are the wrong people. I tend to agree. Remember all of us humble masses, we have more power together than any group of government. We have to stick together in the effort to keep our world a safe, secure and harmonious planet. Every little bit helps. Please do your part to help to preserve our planet for our children and their children for generations to come. I still get goosebumps when I watch this. Enjoy!

Saturday

How Do I Reach Out For Help - What About Support Groups?


Someone has stated that they don't quite understand this sobriety thing, how to reach out or get connected. A lot of people feel that way when first changing their lives for the better. When you've realized that you need to change you've just done what you question. You have already begun reaching out. At this point, getting involved in a home group is very beneficial to you. You can find a variety of information online. GO! You'll see. Be sure to ask where you can get a schedule-book with all the locations and time-schedules in it. Don't feel bad about going to meetings, everyone there has the same goal, more than less. Even though at first we all may feel awkward at an unfamiliar place. Stick with a place for a few visits and get a feel for the group. If you're not comfortable with a place go to another place. Until you feel comfortable about going there all of the time. Its a process, so take your time. But GO! At first it may seem like its useless but it isn't. Then again you may find a place right off that you'll feel really good about. You may also want to check out the selected groups for men or women only. The first step is recognizing that you have to change, so you are already on your way to changing for the better. Now you need to learn the tools of how to deal with keeping to it. Remember how far you would go to get your DOC? (works for Drink or Drug of choice.) Use that same persistence and desire to get the support & learn the tools you need to stick to your sobriety.
Its ALL worth it.  

 
This is one journey that is more successful when you have support from others. Because addiction is very stubborn about staying in your life. It will cause you to have cravings and triggers influenced by the social structure you are subjected to everyday. Its a monkey on your back and its holding on to you very strongly. You'll need to learn how not to give in to it. Because of all the influence there is in society for most of us it can be difficult to overcome, at first. But by having support and direction from your group, you will become strong enough to overcome those influences that would otherwise get the better of you. If you are fortunate enough to connect  with  a "good" sponsor, its a very good idea to do so. You may have to go through a couple of sponsor's though before you find one that really is active in helping you stay clean and sober. But don't despair, you will find one. Although some people may not be as genuine as others, you can connect with the right person. Don't give up trying. A sponser can become an important associate in your journey to staying clean and sober. Look for someone who has been clean and sober for more than 2 years. In doing so, this person has honed the tools for staying away from the addiction. You want someone who has a positive outlook and solid emotional stability. So look for these qualities before you ask someone to be your sponsor.
 
 
What about relationships? One rule of thumb you should always stick to during recovery and that is, NEVER get romantically involved with your sponsor, people in your group, or even people outside of your group. Especially within your first year of going to meetings. Why is this important? Because when you're in the first stages of recovery you are not emotionally ready or prepared to take on any issues that come with a relationship. Just the common events of it can be stressing. A lot of times when things get stressed or go wrong in a relationship, it can cause you to relapse. Sometimes it can cause worse things to happen as well. Its safer for your sobriety and for you to keep any outside emotional demands from occurring. If you're already in a relationship, hopefully your partner is attending meetings as well. Either for themselves or to learn how to support the partner in recovery. Both people in a relationship will need to learn how to deal with sobriety whether both are addicts or not. Also remember just because you are going to a meeting place where most people are working at the same thing, sobriety, don't think that everyone there is a wonderful, trust worthy, supportive person. Even though we'd like to think that about everyone, there will be some people there with their own agenda. They may not be as genuine about their sobriety as others. Something else to keep in mind.
 
                            
All in all attending a support group for any addiction is a very useful tool for people. You get from it what you want by attending. Take the time to talk to someone who has been going to meetings for a long time. Someone who has been clean and sober for a while. You can feel their inner-strength, self assurance and positive attitude. It doesn't matter how many people are at a meeting either. You can attend a small group or a large group, its up to you. But going is key to feeling better and staying clean and sober. You are going because you want to learn to live life on life's terms, without having to use drugs or alcohol to exist. The cravings diminish overtime, the triggers are kept at bay because you've learned how to deal with them. You wake up and actually feel grateful for the day. Like a lot of things, you get out of it what you put into it. But you have to make up your mind to go everyday even more than once a day if necessary. This is your journey to sobriety. You are going to these meetings to help yourself get on the road of a clean, sober and happy life. This is the most important thing you can do for yourself and your life. You have to take it serious in order for your recovery to be achieved. And it can be achieved even if you're at that point of your addiction where you believe you can't exist without your DOC. As a matter of fact its when you think that.. that its time to get the help you need. Its time to get your life back. Just Go!
 
 
 
Copyright(c)2013.How Do I Reach Out For Help - What About Support Groups? Written by SherrieVitello. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday

A Hassle Free Life? Dealing With Life's Terms.


Look around you. You may see alot of people whose lives you think are perfect, but the fact is that nobody's life is perfect. Not even the "wonderful-life family" down the block, the ones with the 2 wonderful children, wonderful house, cute little doggie, 2 new cars, 3 huge flatscreen tv's, a John Deer Riding lawnmower and a wonderful weed and crab-grass-free lawn. Although it may not look like it from the outside, everyone has daily stress, absurd situations and problems. There is no one on the planet that has a hassle free life. No matter how good things look. The universe just doesn't work that way. There may be days when life seems idyllic, so enjoy them while they last because the universe is just getting wound up to throw you a curve ball. Its not a matter of IF it will happen, its WHEN. There comes a day when the car breaks down, the cable goes haywire, the dog runs away, you couldn't pay a bill, your nice new truck got broke into overnight, the lawn is sprouting weeds and the mower needs repair and you've just found out that your place of employment is downsizing.

Its no wonder that sometimes daily lives can become overwhelming. Its enough to drive a person crazy. Sometimes it does, sometimes we just break down. Yet basically people find ways to work through the absurdities and pressures and we strive to be happy. For some, they aren't taught about the tools or coping skills necessary to help work through life's daily pressures and stress. Perhaps their parents weren't taught to have solid coping skills either. We can begin to turn to outside influences. Befriending a person who is of good character and influence makes for a good example. Usually a positive influence talks the talk and walks the walk. Just as negative influences will have negative effects. Other influences can be forms of overdone stimulation, like drugs, alcohol, gambling, sex, overeating etc. People do these things in order to feel better and to help forget the negatives in their lives. Its an easy way out of dealing with the pressures and not living life on life's terms.

We convince ourselves that we need this outside stimuli in order to feel good about ourselves. But we don't and its only temporary. We usually regret this later on after a bad habit has become an addiction. Maybe, at this point of your life, yours isn't exactly what you had hoped it would be. You may even think of your life as a mess. That's not okay. Unless you've given up on yourself and your life, we all have a responsibility to ourselves and our loved ones. People who have set goals, achieved things, created a life with structure and purpose always feel more complete and happy. If all you do is wake up everyday, do drugs or drink alcohol, you don't do anything constructive, your life will become one stagnant, sad existence. Even in the face of loss, due to a tragic storm, foreclosure on your home, loss of your job, loss of a loved one, whatever the case.

People can and will always rebuild themselves and their lives. Its in our innate nature to survive. To come full circle and back to a plateau of stability. You may not get back everything material you've lost and may not achieve every goal you've had on your bucket list. But by aiming high to reach your goals, you will certainly land above where you are now. Fighting the "good fight" to survive and exist in a state of gratitude or completeness is not an unrealistic aspiration. All things are possible when we believe in it enough to try. Your goal isn't perfection, but progress, day to day, month to month, year to year.  If you can look back and see that progress, know you're moving on, you gain fortitude and motivation which gives you wings. You're doing fine. As you progress, you compare life now with life 6 months ago or even a year ago. You see the progress you've made. It feels good and gives you direction and structure. Which are vital keys to feeling productive, content and living more happily.

*If you're in recovery, and this is your beginning, first off, you are not alone. For some people, the first year of getting back on solid ground, is a case of one step forward two steps back. You may finish the first few weeks not noticeably advanced from the day you started your journey. Perhaps you were in such a dense fog of addiction, for so long, that now you feel you are incapable of dealing with everyday life situations. If this is your case, you should embrace that fact and get the help you need. It may take a little longer for someone with that scenario to see improvements, but they will. Inevitably, in such a case, the time it takes to build a solid foundation for recovery is prolonged but still possible. Many of these people aren't ready to move on after a year or even 2 years. That could be your situation. If it is, don't despair. You have already started improving your life by acknowledging that you need to be in recovery. That's awesome! You're building a foundation for that new positive, productive person you will become. If you rush through that foundation then you're sure to regret it when the walls cave in on you. Take the time you need or you may find yourself relapsing and having to begin over again on a new road to recovery.  All life is precious, share your knowledge and help those who need help. You'll be a better person in doing so. Enjoy the day.


Copyright(c)2013.A Hassle Free Life? Dealing With Life's Terms.Written by Sherrie Vitello. All Rights Reserved.
 

Wednesday

RISE!

People need to be their best friend instead of their worse enemy. Loneliness and Alienation is a state of mind and can be prevented. You have to channel negative feelings like boredom or hopelessness into something constructive. I tell people this because its true. Once you've decided to commit to a sober and clean lifestyle you can develop forms of thinking that are productive instead of destructive.

You wonder why life sucks for you. You think its all your fault or someone else's. You think you'll never get out of the rut you're in, you are depressed, you feel hopeless, you look down on yourself..... when you reach this point, its time to look up! Change your thinking, transform your life. The choice has always been our own.

"Set yourself free from your addictions"

 
There are many ways to get help if you're in need of it. Some places cost money, some places are free. Because the state of our outlook about our lives depends on our perception of it, its important to remember that there is always hope, there is always help. You have to make the move for yourself in order to get the tools you need to work through the problems you're facing.
 
The wonderful thing about life is WE CAN ALWAYS CHANGE. Sometimes things happen in our lives that make us feel useless, hopeless or you may feel like its just not worth living. But you're wrong. We are put here, in this life, for a very short time, when you consider the entire spectrum of the universe. What matters is what we do with the time we are given. Your life isn't meant to be lived in a chaotic, addictive, angry, hateful or unhappy state. You are a loving, giving, spiritual being.
 
Through self pity and a hopeless driven existence you've forgotten how wonderful of a human being you are. Sometimes people just don't want to be hurt so they hide away in addictions. They alienate themselves because they think they won't be hurt by anyone by being that way. But in reality, that person is actually hurting themselves and with some help and support, people in this state CAN change for the better. And live a much more positive life that they truly desire.
 
 
 
So reach out, take it upon yourself to get the help you need. Stop doing things that are bad for you. Stop allowing addiction and falsehood to run your life. Once you believe that there is a better way, a happier way to exist, commit to the change. You can fight off the dependence of addiction, whatever it may be and let go of the fear that you can't live without it. Because you can. 
YOU WILL RISE.   
 
 
 
Copyright(c)2013. Rise! Written by Sherrie Vitello. All Rights Reserved.
 
 
 
 
 

Tuesday

Procrastination – Are we hard wired or is it by choice?


This character trait effects anyone. But are we hard wired or is it by choice? It is believed there are different levels of procrastination, some are more severe than others. Throughout our lives, we will come across circumstances where we have to complete a task, or finish something, we started. Sometimes we tend to put that off because we would rather be doing something more enjoyable. If whatever it is we're procrastinating about is something we find difficult or unpleasant to do, we tend to put it off for as long as we can. Not everyone is like that. There are some people that understand that they have to get done what has to be done, no matter what it is. Loose ends are not a part of their character makeup. Source: Widipedia (The Free Encyclopedia) states: In psychology, procrastination refers to the act of replacing high-priority actions with tasks of lower priority, or doing something from which one derives enjoyment, and thus putting off important tasks to a later time.

Some view procrastination as a form of laziness and they do seem to share similar characteristics such as unwillingness to act or lack of strong motivation. Perhaps it could stem from childhood upbringing, where a child is never taught the gratification of completing a task. It could be something that has to be done, that we may fear or be overwhelmed by. There are some people that enjoy the rush of chaos, and they wait until the last minute to get something done that has to be done right away. With the anticipation and urgency of having to take care of something that must be done. These kind of procrastinators enjoy the rush of adrenaline that one gets when in a hurry or when rushed to do something. Then there are people that think by not making a decision to complete a task absolves them from the responsibility of it. Which of course is not a good way of looking at completing things that must be done. It's kind of like having something floating around in your mind that you know must be taken care of, it must be removed from the to-do-list. Yet we let it just float around in there as we go about our day.

This could be the worst procrastination of all. When we have loose ends or leave things undone. For most people, it tends to weigh on their minds. This can cause us to be distracted and unfocused towards other tasks that may be more important or we must take care of, such as, our work, paying a bill or an immediate project. Of course, as busy as we all are during our days sometimes we have to put off until later things that should be done. So long as we get to it as soon as possible, we usually can take care of it and put it behind us and get it out of our mental folder. Have you ever noticed how relieved you feel after you've done a task that you have been procrastinating about completing? It seems like such a relief. You no longer have it in your mind and you're not distracted by remembering you have to take care of it because it's been done. I'm sure we all can remember times where we've said "Oh, shoot, I should've taken care that!"

Procrastination seems to be the type of character trait that will only cause us grief if we don't learn to overcome it or its not taken out of in our daily equation. It just seems to take up space in our minds or mental folders and that space could be taken up by much more happier, pleasurable memories or more productive things. Don't you think? When making a conscious decision to take care of something, it is by our sheer will that allows us to follow through and complete the task. You may find it better to do the tasks you dislike the most, or is most important, by completing it first. This will make the other less imperative tasks seem alot more appealing. So what's the difference between procrastinating and being lazy? Research shows that the actual act of procrastinating means putting off, suspending or delaying an action or task until a later time. Whereas laziness is refusing to act or inactivity resulting from a dislike of the activity or work. So even though procrastination and laziness are similar, they do have significant differences. So don't think just because someone procrastinates that they are lazy, there is a difference. What can you do about procrastination? You have to meet it face-to-face, one-on-one. Allowing it to linger will only make it worse for yourself in the long run.

If you have the time in the day to take care of something, which you have been procrastinating about, then take care of it, get it done, get it behind you, be done with it. It's a matter of choice. Sometimes what we are procrastinating about we may find that it didn't even take that much time to do and may not even be that hard. When you're finished with the task, you'll realize, that wasn't that bad after all. That is what life is, we have free will to decide and choose how we live our lives. Although our basic characteristics and personalities are formed as children by our parents, siblings and friends. As we grow into an adult, we form our own points of view, our own ways of handling things and we are responsible for our actions in our own lives. It is truly up to our individual selves how we will handle procrastination in our lives. But first you have to acknowledge that you do procrastinate. Like any bad habit or addiction, we have to acknowledge that it exists. After that first step is taken, we can then move on to improving that area of our lives, which is procrastination. Write this rule down and repeat it every time you think you are procrastinating about something. "Don't put off till tomorrow what you can achieve today." You will be less stressed, happier and a more content person in doing so. Thanks for reading. Enjoy the day.

 Copyright(c)2013.Procrastination – Are we hard wired or is it by choice? Written by Sherrie Vitello.All Rights Reserved.

Friday

Self Pity (The Emotional Parasite)

                                     

*Self-pity is a parasite that feeds on itself. Many of us are inclined towards self-pity, not allowing for the balance of life's natural tragedies. We will face good and bad times--and they will pass. With certainty they will pass. The attitude "Why me?" hints at the little compassion we generally feel for others' suffering. Our empathy with others' even our awareness of their suffering, is generally minimal. We are much too involved in our own. Were we less self-centered, we'd see that blessings and tragedies visit us all in equal amounts.  Some people respond to their blessings with equanimity, and they quietly remove the sting from their tragedies. We can learn to do both. Recovery is learning new responses, feeling and behaving in healthier ways. 
We need not get caught by self-pity. We can always feel it coming on. And we can always let it go. Self-pity may beckon today, fortunately, we can learn that we have other choices.
(*The above paragraph, excerpt was taken from the wonderful book: Each Day a New Beginning by Karen Casey.)
 
"Why does this happen to me? Nothing ever goes right!"
We all have at some point in our lives had this emotion of "self pity." It is emotionally draining. Like a parasite feeding on our emotions. Its a human or natural emotion brought on by sadness, things not working out the way we'd like them to, self doubt and even by other people. Even though we all have the ability to swing down into self pity, we shouldn't. Self pity can cause a clean/sober person to fall back into their addiction. It can also cause a person whom never had an addiction to start one. Its a "negative emotion."  But it doesn't have to lead to a negative outcome for us.  Don't confuse Self-pity with Grief. Grief is feelings that accompany any kind of loss. Feelings of loss and to mourn the loss. Unlike Self Pity which is feelings of shame or guilt that is a result of deeper, more painful feelings that seem impossible for a person to reveal, even blocking or surpressing any chance of a positive outcome.  
 
Sometimes when we try to listen and then help someone, by showing them that they're allowing self pity to get the better of them, can cause them to become angry. This is due to shame, guilt or hiding of hurtful unexpressed feelings. Emotional pain that leads us to block the helpful or positive feelings that can help us to feel better.  Self pity can cause us to hide the feelings that we feel are shameful. Its also an addictive emotion, at times giving us a sense of pleasure, hiding us from reality.  As human beings, we have free will, which allows us to make choices in our lives. Remember its us, ourselves that can direct our own thinking and thought patterns.  The worse thing you can do to yourself is allow others to direct how you feel. That can be extremely destructive emotionally for anyone.
 
Learning how not to allow self pity to take control everytime things seem difficult or insurmountable will be key to developing a sense of a positive outlook, understanding and confidence.  Being a good listener to those who are in the self pity state of mind is very helpful. Respecting the self pity sufferer's privacy is paramount.  In other words keep it private, don't go telling everyone. Once that person has purged or expressed their deep emotional pain to you, then you can begin to help them heal by suggesting a positive resolve to their emotional dilemma.  At all costs don't become so emotionally involved that you could fall into shame or self pity youself due to what you may hear your suffering friend tell you. Have empathy, be realistic and find the positive side to whatever the solution could be. Help and encourage your friend or loved one to see the light at the end of the tunnel. In doing this you can help the self pity sufferer onto the road of healing and recovering and you'll feel gratified that you were able to help. You'd be suprised at the healthy results of a good listener and positive input. Hug each other and go about your day.
 
 
Copyright(c)2013. Self Pity(The Emotional Parasite)Written by Sherrie Vitello. All Rights Reserved.
 
   
 
 

Monday

Advertising verses Inner Beauty? How it effects our self-image.

   ("Do I look as good as that woman in that commercial?")
One of the biggest struggles facing young people today, is self-image. Everywhere you look, on TV, on billboards, in magazines, videos, movies, 90% of the time it's all beautiful perfect people. Advertising verses inner beauty and self-image all of the time. This suffocating display of everyone being perfect or beautiful, can be very difficult for young people. Especially during junior high and high school years for both boys and girls. Girls worry about being popular, being pretty enough, having the nice clothes, having the prettiest accessories. Whereas boys, although not shown as much, they have to be worried about being cool, hanging with the coolest guys, and when old enough having the coolest car. It just seems to be all material things and outer image. Of course in reality, eventually, this is not the way it is. Somewhere long ago, someone decided that being the perfect, sexiest, handsomest, prettiest, skinniest, finest looking human being, is the best way to sell things, and it's worked, quite well, all this time. How many times have we thought about buying a product and thinking to ourselves that we will get the same results as what we saw in that advertising? You know you did that too..LOL!

Some advertising has used average people, older folks, mothers with their children, dads with their kids and pets, in an attempt to make the people watching, believe that this advertiser is just like them. The "average folk." That advertising technique works too in a lot of cases. But all in all, these advertising's and commercials are really after one thing, and that is to get the public to buy their product. Some advertising is very funny or have a catchy tune. Those are the ones people seem to remember the most. You can believe these advertisers who create these commercials know this. But just what are these advertisers saying to people that are subjected to the falsity that in order to get the same results or work as well, you have to look as good as those models do on television, have the same great looking car, or beautiful clothes. Sure..everyone wants to look great, but at what price and stress-level does it cost our young people in today's materialistic society? Everyday people are getting ready for work, school, going out and visiting with friends, just being in the public eye. They change outfits, change shoes, put on makeup, spray cologne or perfume and primp, guys do this too, just not as extravagant, to make themselves look as good as possible, all in the effort of being attractive or sexy.

I'm not saying we should all walk around smelly, dirty and grungy looking. Eeeeww! Although for some people that seems to be their way. I just think that in our country, and in many societies, we put way too much emphasis on the outer beauty of things instead of looking inside where beauty is found, is made and lives. There's nothing wrong with having nice things. Things that we've worked for, bought with our hard earned money, built up from nothing. Things that we enjoy, and things that make our lives filled more with gratitude, than vanity. I just think that young people are faced with more materialistic stress then necessary and it's greatly due to the falsehood of advertising and commercials that our children are subjected to on a daily basis. We probably will never get rid of this type of advertising either. So what can we do or how can we help our children? It's up to the parents to teach their children not to be so vain or gullible about what they see advertised. For some young people, they will have to learn this lesson on their own because their own parents are very materialistic. Which makes it even harder for them to learn this life lesson. When we teach our children to believe in themselves, teach them to have good character, to know that they are just as good as anyone else, but not better than everyone else, to be humble, it makes it easier for that child to grow up with a sense of assurance and belief in themselves. Without having to adorn an overpriced, unrealistic result of a product they saw advertised.

Young people that are raised with self-assurance tend to stay in focus as to who they are as an individual all through their lives. Even when people are trying to "find themselves," having been taught self-assurance, will usually lead that person back to their right path. Instead of falling by the wayside trying to keep up with all the falseness in advertising, that they believe may be true. But sad to say, there will be those who will not learn this life lesson. What you will find when people do not learn this life lesson is they become very vain, materialistic and self absorbed. They worry about every little sign that may cause them imperfection. They may even become bitter or angry about the fact that they are no longer able to look like all that false advertising that they grew up believing was true. So the lesson here is, there's nothing wrong with wanting to look good so long as it is not done out of self-serving vanity or being conceited. Being happy and self accepting has always given us an outward glow of beauty, whether we have the most current fashion line or not. Realizing that beauty comes from within, believing in our own abilities and character that is what will shine through from the inside out. That will give us the true beauty within ourselves instead of what we find in all that surface falsehood. That is "true beauty." Food for thought. :)

 

 
Copyright(c)2013. Advertising verses Inner-Beauty? Written by Sherrie Vitello. All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday

Self Acceptance - Builds Inner Strength


I love the writings of Karen Casey in her book: Each Day A New Beginning. Here she writes about Acceptance. God grant us the serenity to accept the things we cannot change. Many times, yesterday, last week, today and even tomorrow, we'll come..face to face with a seemingly intolerable situation. The compulsion to change the situation, to demand that another person change the situation is great. What a hard lesson it is to learn we can change only ourselves. The hidden gift in this lesson is that as our activities change, often the intolerable situations do too. Acceptance, after a time, smooth all the ripples that discourage us. And it softens us. It nurtures wisdom. It attracts joy and love from others. Ironically, we often try to force changes that we think will loosen love and lessen struggle. Acceptance can do what our willpower could never accomplish. As we grow in wisdom, as we grow in understanding, as we realize the promises of this, we'll stand ready, as an individual, to weather all our personal storms. Like the willow in the wind, we'll bend rather than break. And we'll be able to help others become wise through our example.

So many people, at one time or another, try to find ways to feel complete. To be accepting of things can help our journeys be more enjoyable. It all starts within ourselves. It doesn't hinder our abilities when we learn to accept. In essence acceptance relieves us of the pressures of trying to cope or deal with situations in which we would like to change but cannot. That doesn't mean we should accept all things. In no way is that meant. You can change yourself, your situation, increase your chances of being more accepting of yourself. There are things within our lives, in ourselves that we can change and knowing that we can change them is in essence acceptance. We accept the idea of changing for the better. We do the best we can to do so and we self-accept ourselves. When we make positive strides in our lives, be proud of yourself, be happy that you were able to make a change. Acknowledging that to yourself is key to self acceptance. Strive to be happy.


Copyright(c)2013.Written by Sherrie Vitello, excerpts from the book: Each Day a New Beginning by Karen Casey. All Rights Reserved.