This book was my saving grace and changed my life and my way of thinking so drastically and I am better for it. So I’m sharing it with you so that, while it might not be as instantaneously impacting as it was for me, you can see the way I have changed my thinking so that I am happy no matter what is going on in my life or where I’m at. It is a choice – and a pain in the butt sometimes to choose to do – to choose happiness and reframe my thinking and it took a few weeks of continuous conscious effort to stop the negative thoughts that seemed to come so naturally and having to be honest with myself wasn’t a walk in the park either. But it is worth it on the other side. I’ve always poo-pooed self help books as schemes to make a buck off of our insecurities and maybe some are but most all of them have a positive message and ideas that can help or inspire us in one way or another so let them have their buck for writing down what we should already know and be doing, it is mutually beneficial. The book that follows is not making a cent off you or me or anyone for that matter, it is not copyrighted and available free to the public (you can find it for purchase too in audio and print but its a public-domain book so you can find it for free *see links after book*). It is pretty simple and repetitive but the ideas within can open up a whole new world for you if you want them to. I’ll also add the audio version somewhere in here because that is how I first “read” it, with my ears and pen to paper scribbling notes like a madwoman, and all in one sitting (and then again, and later again still and somewhere in there I’ve read it a couple times over) and wham bam thank you ma’am I’m still right where I was but I enjoy and am happy. My stoic best friend doesn’t agree with thinking your way out of poverty and she’s right that sounds unthinkable! Yeah that was sooo cornily on purpose, sue me (can’t squeeze a turnip!!). Okay I’m done. Anyway she is the smartest lady I’ve ever known, and I’ve known some really smart people so she is impressive, but she’s wrong on this one (loves you my errant muse!!) and I’m gonna prove it – just give me a couple years! Really though she is correct that you can’t JUST think positively and get anywhere but that is where this system of thinking and ACTION works. It is about thinking positively and accepting things as they are and improving upon them by turning those positive thoughts into actions that bring about better outcomes. You catch more flies with honey (shit may attract more but honey keeps em stuck) than vinegar, right?
Okay let me stop rambling and without further adieu As a Man Thinketh written by the genius philosophical mind of James Allen. (I made it pretty!)
The James Allen Free Library
The James Allen Free Library aspires to make all the works of inspirational writer James Allen (1864-1912) available online, to anyone, for free, in both English and Dutch.
I found a page called Women for Sobriety and they approach the Program a little bit differently than Alcoholics Anonymous which follows the 12 steps and 12 traditions, instead they promote their “The Program” aka The Women for Sobriety New Life Program (WSNLP to me now) and that involves 13 “Acceptance Statements.” They promote a new way of life through a new way of thinking and that is something I already do through turning negativity into a positive outcome and focusing on loving myself first so I am definitely interested. I’m going to share with you their 13 Acceptance Statements and my thoughts on them to give you a comprehensive idea of what the WSNLP is about.
Just ran across their 4 steps to nurture behavioral changes and the first two are on point with what I urge others to do just with themselves so that is kind of cool: 1. Positive reinforcement (approval and encouragement) SAME JUST WITH SELF 2. Cognitive strategies (positive thinking) SAME 3. Letting the body help (relaxation techniques, meditation, diet and physical exercise) A GREAT WAY TO ATTEND TO YOUR WHOLE SELF 4. Dynamic group involvement NOT SO MUCH SINCE IT BEING ALL ABOUT YOU IS PART OF SELF LOVE
I FEEL LIKE I WAS STANDING ACROSS THE ROOM FROM YOU YELLING MY IDEAS AFTER READING IN A NORMAL VOICE ALL RUDE LIKE. I SAW YOU MOTIONING FOR ME TO QUIET DOWN BUT I’M JUST ENTHUSIASTIC!
“The program concentrates on learning new self-enhancing behavior and developing a sense of empowerment and self-efficacy.” THIS IS ON POINT
WFS-NLP Acceptance Statements 1. I have a life-threatening problem that once had me. I now take charge of my life and my well-being. I accept the responsibility. Sounding pretty familiar but a bit more dire than Step 1. 2. Negative thoughts destroy only myself. My first conscious sober act is to reduce negativity in my life. Acceptance AND action I like it! Negativity is the crux of the problem. 3. Happiness is a habit I am developing. Happiness is created, not waited for. Action lovin' it! Not any more vague than the first few steps. 4. Problems bother me only to the degree I permit. I now better understand my problems. I do not permit problems to overwhelm me. Learning to self soothe and taking responsibility for our reactions, impressive. 5. I am what I think. I am a capable, competent, caring, compassionate woman. Maybe C-words weren't the best choice but I'm all about positive self talk. 6. Life can be ordinary or it can be great. Greatness is mine by a conscious effort. Some days just are mediocre and part of recovery is accepting that as okay. 7. Love can change the course of my world. Caring is all important. Not really for this one but self love and self care are numero uno. 8. The fundamental object of life is emotional and spiritual growth. Daily I put my life into proper order knowing which are the priorities. I'll agree that personal growth is and that encompasses those so okay. 9. The past is gone forever. No longer am I victimized by the past. I am a new woman. The past still happened and is something to learn from and appreciate. Also, the past didn't victimize anyone. Own your shit and move forward with the wisdom from it. 10. All love gives returns. I am learning to know that I am loved. If we include negative returns then true. Must love yourself first. 11. Enthusiasm is my daily exercise. I treasure the moments of my New Life. Lost me on daily enthusiasm I enjoy being reserved. "New Life" like you can throw out the old one like it never happened? Not for this lack of appreciation of life lived. 12. I am a competent woman, and I have much to give life. This is what I am, and I shall know it always. More positive self talk, I'm all for it. You are much more than just competent though. 13. I am responsible for myself and for my actions. I am in charge of my mind, my thoughts, and my life. That is it? Glad everyone has their wits about them but my mind abandoned ship for a while so, hey, I'm the minority not many alcoholics or addicts have mental health disorders right? Yeah read sarcasm as that is opposite of correct. I can get behind the thoughts and life and self and actions just want a little wiggle room for my mind too.
So all in all I am getting that they figured out the same thing I figured out – that in order to live a fulfilling and worthwhile life you have to love and take care of yourself. They started off strong with actionable follow ups to the acceptance but then I feel they just started throwing around positive affirmations rather than getting to the core of the problem: you’ve got to love yourself first and accept yourself including your past mistakes and experiences. This reads like a woman wrote it, it has a lot of fluffy niceties but lacks real substance or character building and in the end these ladies are still running from their issues. The steps embrace the manliness a bit more they are very direct and to the point and while WFSers are hiding their skeletons deeper in their closets the Program forces you, when you’re still raw, to face EVERYTHING you have ever done in your life. It works for a huge amount of people to finally get honest (which is the basis of my self love program but with another person knowing everything too. I respect it.) like they don’t want to ever have to admit anything ever again and are now leading an honest existence in the Program so BAM we get good people made!