iO9 is a compendium blog of science, science fiction, pop culture commentary, and many things either silly, social or serious.
Recently they published a comprehensive, well written piece by George Dvorsky on the what's, why's and how's of mindfulness meditation. It includes several helpful embedded videos (only several minutes each. you have time to view at least one of them) and links.
If you're full of excuses when it comes to meditation I have only this to say:
The 11th Step says "...prayer and meditation..." not "...prayer OR meditation...". If you're giving yourself a pass on meditation you are shortchanging your experience of the 12 Steps -- and thus, of the process which gives us a spiritual awakening -- that which is critical to our ongoing sobriety as time passes.
Optimism is a powerful force; ultimately far more motivating and constructive than pessimism.
Optimism is not unrealistic. Especially when grounded in willingness and faith.
Optimism can change everything about footwork, making it energizing rather than tiring -- because you're moving towards something, not away from something.
Optimism fosters an open mind and the ability to see new connections and possibilities.
Optimism only irritates (or threatens?) those who feel safer being stuck in fear.
Optimism is "All I can do is try" vs. pessimism's "No point... it'll never work."
The negative voice is not "more realistic" than the positive voice. That is a sophisticated con run by those master Mental Con Men: Ego and alcoholism. Envisioning a positive outcome is an act of trust in a Higher Power and an act of faith in our own abilities. Things may not always work out the way we want, but they always, eventually, work out for the best.
I believe this sentiment wholeheartedly. I think Mr. Maslow is correct.
But at the same time there is a grandeur to this idea that feels almost too elevated for my life, day in and day out. Perhaps stronger people, more driven, more impassioned, more... something... can do this 'again and again' on their own.
I can't. Some days I need help.
The great lesson I've learned in AA is that it is foolish for me to try to do it all on my own. Sometimes I need a little inspiration, or example, or guidance or assistance.
Sometimes to choose again and again I need to ask God, as I understand God, for help, and then accept it in whatever form it is offered. As the old expression goes, "Sometimes God works through the people around me."
(Though sometimes that, too, is an 'again and again' I need help with. Sometimes I even need help accepting help.)
Of course, as I reread what I've written, and reconsider Dr. Maslow's quote, I realize that he didn't even suggest I had to do it all on my own. That's just how I heard it.
My alcoholic thinking conflates 'powerless' with 'helpless.' When it comes to dealing with my alcoholism I am powerless. I am without power. But I am not helpless. I am not without help.
In AA meetings this isolative mechanism -- this alcoholic thinking which unconsciously and reflexively clouds my vision and casts me as a man alone -- is often revealed to me through listening to other people speak and share.
I still need meetings because on my own I make things harder for myself without even realizing I'm doing it.