Have you ever made a mistake?
 
 
  Breaking Free Chizuk #1253  
 
 
In Today's Issue
   
Image of the Day: Make time for impossible things.
12 Step Attitude: Errare humanum est
Attitude & Perspective: Principle 19: We don’t lose past gains after a fall
Sayings: Staying sober
Daily Dose of Dov: What Can I Do For You?
 
 
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Image of the Day
 
Make time for impossible things.
 
Make time for impossible things.
12 Step Attitude
 
Errare humanum est
 
To err is human; to blame it on the other guy is even more human.
 
By GYE

We are on a path that leads us to become better people with greater insight and stronger character.

A central theme on this path is learning to take responsibility for ourselves, our mistakes, and our choices as we deal with our situations.

We can make progress on this path by noticing our defensive reactions when we make a mistake or when someone criticizes us.

Our old ways were aimed at shifting the blame or counterattacking to get someone else off our case.

Now we are learning how to take on the blame when it honestly belongs to us.

One of the first things we need to learn in taking responsibility is that there is no shame in making a mistake.

Everyone makes mistakes. But some people don't accept responsibility for them, and others do.

We have much greater respect for someone who does.

Admitting when we were wrong doesn't mean speaking in vague generalities, saying that "mistakes were made."

It doesn't mean saying, "Yes, I did this, but only because you did that."

It means saying what we did or didn't do and laying the facts out there for us and others to deal with.

When we can do that, forgiveness almost always follows shortly.

Today I will hold back my defensiveness and admit the facts as they are.

Attitude & Perspective
 
Principle 19: We don’t lose past gains after a fall
 
By GYE

If we were trying to stay clean and had a fall, we must realize that we haven’t lost anything that we gained until now. We simply have to get up and continue from where we left off. The Steipler once told someone who complained to him about how difficult this struggle was, that the times we fail are erasable, but every time we pass a test is a Kinyan that's ours to keep forever. Even if we are successfully misgaber (overcome) only once in a while at first, this initial hisgabrus will ultimately lead us to break free completely.

Read more
Sayings
 
First we stayed sober because we had to... then we stayed sober because we were willing to... finally we stay sober because we want to...
 
Daily Dose of Dov
 
What Can I Do For You?
 
By Dov

We have discussed in the past how one of the foundations of the 12-Steps is learning how to "Let Go and Let G-d". Well, another major foundation of the steps that helps us find freedom from the addiction, is learning how to live for OTHERS and not be "self-centered". As one guy wrote today on the forum:

Some of you know that I've been attending Duvid Chaim's 12 step phone conference. I can honestly say that after 3 weeks of Duvid Chaim's call, I am reminded during the day to perform a couple of selfless acts and to think more about others. Although I don't see yet exactly how this helps the addiction, the calls are worth it just for that!

Also, someone asked a question on the forum about the addiction "vis-à-vis his wife" and Dov responded with something so beautiful that I must share it with you all today. (Dov is sober in SA for 18 years, click here to read his story). Please take the time to read it slowly and try to internalize what he is saying because it is truly profound.

Dov writes:

The big issue in my case (which at least partially covers your marriage concern as well) is that I try to always ask myself: "what 'mode' am I in now, Giving or Getting?"

Without even getting into the issue of what is "good" or "bad", or even what is "nice" or "better" - just for us to know the real truth about ourselves, it really works wonders to be aware of it.

Rav Dessler brings the following idea in Kuntres Hachesed, but I write it here be"H from a (12-Step) program perspective. Please tell me if the following makes sense to you...

If I am truly and primarily concerned about what I am giving to all the people in the world, to the people on the street (that I'm walking down), to the folks in my workplace, to my family, to my wife... well, then a lot of things are gonna be OK. Like how people look (beautiful or otherwise), what they are giving me, and how they make me feel.

For example - if I find myself gazing, I quickly ask myself, "Hey! What good am I doing for that person in the street I am staring at? I'd better daven for them instead, Hashem certainly has some kind of purpose and/or plan for them - even if they are a goy, no? I'm sure they need something! (and it's surely not: my ogling at them!)"...

Are my kids making me feel proud and secure as a parent with their behavior or are they 'driving me nuts'? "Hey! What does how they make me feel have to do with what I can give to them? Better I should look at how I can be useful to them, especially given my proclivities to anger or insecurity.

Now I am getting somewhere...

Is my relationship with my wife fulfilling - or not so much... "Hey now, is that why she married me? And is that the only reason I married her? If she'd give me all the fancy stuff I desired (including the lust), would it satisfy me? And what would really happen then?

I am not speaking out against satisfaction in every aspect of marriage, but I need to face this truth: Am I really looking for physical satisfaction, or do I really want for something else in her - like being truly deeply, fully and trustingly connected to another person in this short life - with no price tag either way - just because we are one? Yup, for me that is definitely it.

And the only way to "get" that, is by giving it all away for free to her, no?" After all, do we really expect anything less from our wives?

You may be able to apply this idea in your marriage and think about how whatever you do or choose to communicate etc. with your wife, gives to/affects her. If you try it, let us know what happens, OK?

If this was helpful to you, fantastic!! If not, nu... At least it reminded me of how precious my relationships really are to me, and maybe I'll smile just a bit more when I walk in the door tonight!

Love,
Dov

Do you think you may have a porn addiction?
 

Do you have a problem with obsessive and compulsive porn use? Have you seriously tried the tools on GYE and feel that you are not getting better? Maybe it’s time to consider joining a 12-Step program.

Porn Anonymous (PA)
If you’re compulsively acting-out with pornography and masturbation we suggest you explore joining Porn Anonymous (PA). If you need help deciding whether to join PA, call Michael at 347-699-2368, or email help@pornanonymous.org to schedule a time to talk. For more information visit pornanonymous.org (Hebrew: p-a.org.il / Yiddish: pa-yid.org).

Sexaholics Anonymous (SA)
If your compulsive acting-out has progressed beyond the screen (with other people, paid sexual services, etc.) we suggest you explore joining Sexaholics Anonymous (SA). To figure out if SA is for you, call Dov at 917-414-8205, or email Dov at dov@guardyoureyes.org to schedule a time to talk. For more information visit www.sa.org.

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