Coping With Stress
Inevitably, there are times of stress in our lives, no matter how long we've been in recovery.
Sometimes, the stress is outside or around us. We're feeling balanced, but our circumstances are stressful. Sometimes, the stress is within; we feel out of balance.
When the stress is external and internal, we experience our most difficult times.
During stressful times, we can rely more heavily on our support systems. Our friends and groups can help us feel more balanced and peaceful in spite of our stressful conditions.
Affirming that the events taking place are a temporarily uncomfortable part of a good, solid plan can help. We can assure ourselves that we will get through. We won't be destroyed. We won't crumple or go under.
It helps to go back to the basics to focus on detachment, dealing with feelings, and taking life one day at a time.
Our most important focus during times of stress is taking care of ourselves. We are better able to cope with the most irregular circumstances; we are better able to be there for others, if we're caring for ourselves. We can ask ourselves regularly: What do we need to do to take care of ourselves? What might help us feel better or more comfortable?
Self-care may not come as easily during times of stress. Self-neglect may feel more comfortable. But taking care of us always works.
Today, I will remember that there is no situation that can't be benefited by taking care of myself.
Hope for a Future with My Son
Before I came to Al-Anon, I thought my son’s drinking was never going to end. I was either going to have to find a way to stop it or totally give him up and never see him again. That’s how it was in my mind—all or nothing. When I got desperate enough, I found my way to Al Anon. You showed me that there are other solutions and that if I kept coming back, I might learn to look at the situation in a different light. I did keep coming, and you were right.
I found a glimmer of hope, and when I surrendered to a Higher Power, that glimmer grew into a ray of sunshine. I started by using the slogans, reading the literature, and working the Steps. By changing myself and my attitudes, I found hope—hope for a future with my son in which I could love and respect him whether he was drinking or not. I could detach from the disease and care for him unconditionally. I “Let Go and Let God” until my son’s Higher Power got him into recovery and sobriety. I also learned, with God’s help, a whole new way of living—the Al-Anon way. Now, instead of feeling powerless and helpless, I am filled with hope, faith, and trust.
By Carol H., Florida August, 2022
Reprinted with permission of The Forum
Al-Anon Family Groups Incorporated, Virginia Beach, VA
Today's Hope is a Recovery themed site with a focus on Friends and Families of Alcoholics and problem drinkers. We are not affiliated with any 12 Step program. The daily sharings contain a reading from
Al-Anon's Conference Approved publication The Forum, an inspirational quote/saying and a recovery based reading/meditation. The intent of Today's Hope is to share experience, strength and hope. Please take what you like and leave the rest.