A very useful tool that I use when I awaken to begin my day is to immediately embed positive thoughts. After years of waking up pissed off at someone or something; it's almost second nature to arise with my old self defeating and negative ideations evoked from well worn neural pathways of fear and self hate. By filling up on positivity first thing in the morning, and throughout the day, I consciously set the standard to abide by. My morning routine is as follows: I get on my knees as soon as I get out of bed and say "Thank You", I ask for guidance throughout the day and that I be kept clean and sober. Secondly, I perform 20 minutes of sitting meditation which I also practice prior to going to bed every evening. Meditation allows me to clear out any residual or pending cynicism, gloom and despair. When sitting, I realize that what I think to be of most importance in the material maelstrom of our competitive and capitalistic society is actually of least importance. At least, it's not as important as my magnifying mind makes it out to be. I'm reminded to rule from my inside rather than be regulated by outside influences. Thirdly: After meditation, I read literature that inspires me to accept and apply a more spiritual and constructive lifestyle. Two books that I read from every morning (and have done so since getting clean and sober in 2001) are: Twenty-Four Hours A Day by Hazelden and Just For Today (Daily Meditations For Recovering Addicts), I read snippets from other books as well. In alliance with the aforementioned books; I am currently digesting: Daily Reflections on Addiction, Yoga and Getting Well by Rolf Gates, Awaken Every Day by Thubten Chodron, Faith (Trusting Your Own Deepest Experience) by Sharon Salzberg and Training the Mind and Cultivating Loving-Kindness by Chogyam Trungpa. Does reading this material make me a good person? Not necessarily. It does, however, provide choices instead of living by auto pilot. If the adage "Garbage in, Garbage out" has any relevance, then, the converse must be just as relative regarding my thoughts and actions.
Lastly, I began writing this blog Sunday evening. Yesterday (Monday) I went to Urgent Care. My main complaint was sinus and chest congestion with shortness of breath and a non productive cough (which I've tolerated for awhile now). The Dr. in me was ready to prescribe antibiotics and send me on my way. However, The attending physician ordered an X-ray. The results did not show any major concerns regarding pneumonia or bronchitis. What it did reveal is a round circle in my left lung the size of a ball bearing which the Dr. referred to as a nodule or cyst. He told me to follow up with my primary immediately. I'm waiting to hear back from my Dr. as I type. To say that I am not concerned would be a lie. To say that I am immobilized by fear would be just as much a lie. Today and everyday I have a practice. A practice that promotes positive expression rather than pessimistic victimization. Just for today, I'll practice what I preach.
Love to All..I'll keep you updated...