Keeping the focus on myself

Welcome to First Steps to Al-Anon Recovery from Al-Anon Family Groups. This is a series of podcasts to discuss some common concerns for people who have been affected by someone else’s drinking.

Today we’re going to ask Al-Anon members what it means to them when they hear the suggestion to keep the focus on themselves, and not on the problem drinker in their life.

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  1. Lil June 2017 at 9:57 pm

    My partner has 11 mths sober..father to my child and Now Im completely sober also.I spent a longtime trying to fix the extremes of his addiction,and now he’s in recovery…well.Its not a picnic of a relationship,but the important thing for me to go back to focusing on myself and my own recovery.Lets face it.I didn’t control him in addiction and I don’t in recovery.Im tired of the worry about the relationship when worrying about myself and my future is the only power I have.The absolutely BEST thing I can NOT try fix this relationship, and leave it as it is.Focus on myself and my future.There is alot for me to do.. practical steps to take..but mostly too..just to enjoy my life for me.Its important for me to realise I can be happy inside of myself and not need that happiness to come from someone else.Once apon a time I sought his love and affection and some golden prize,now it’s non-existent..and I want to focus on myself and building my life to be a golden prize for myself.I deserve it.Ive been through alot of stuff…and I want a future that doesn’t depend on someone who gives nothing emotionally…

  2. Katie March 2017 at 11:27 am

    When I focus on the alcoholic I am abandoning myself. I’ve been abandoned enough by other people, I don’t need to abandon myself. That’s what keeps me focused on myself.

  3. Debbie February 2017 at 9:29 am

    I so needed this today!

  4. Debbie February 2017 at 9:25 am

    I needed to hear this so Much!
    Thank you

  5. anna June 2016 at 5:40 pm

    This is my first time on this site. Hope to get the strenght I need to walk away from the alcoholic my life.

  6. Cherie June 2016 at 6:58 am

    This makes so much sense! When I focus on my partner’s drinking I end up feeling sick, tired and angry. I worry about what effect the drinking has on my children but then I end up being short and cranky with my kids cause I’m miserable.
    I need to shift the focus on me so I can be physically and emotionally well, making sure I am being the best person for those around me.

  7. DaNel February 2016 at 3:17 pm

    Is there any way I could talk to Maria? Her post on August 18, 2015 9:05am is exactly what I am going through. I need help. I love my boyfriend and he treats me like a queen. Until reading her post I didn’t realize what his drinking has done.

  8. Darya December 2015 at 9:12 pm

    I’m so glad I took the time to listen and “hear” this important message. I’m amazed how I’m not alone with the madness. It’s so hard to look back on how great life was before my life with an alcoholic. He’s an amazing man who deserves so much more from himself.

    When I express my feelings, I end up frustrated and resentful and now I think it’s because I need to focus on me and my behavior versus trying to explain why I’m depressed and short-tempered. I need to focus on what I can do, not what I can’t control. I’m not alone with the confusing things that I am now experiencing. I’m so glad I found this!

  9. Rachel December 2015 at 9:28 pm

    This was good for me to listen to. Thank you so much.

    I felt so uncomfortable earlier tonight. It reminded me of my past dysfunctional family who could be unfeeling and cruel too, when I needed comfort. I think it is a control issue and the clique that needs to dominate.

    I’m putting the focus back on myself now, thanks to you. I’m powerless over people, places and things. I feel supported again listening to your podcast.

  10. Kathryne November 2015 at 9:21 pm

    Keeping the Focus on myself is a great idea! I just have to keep reminding myself to do that. I will make that my goal for now. Thanks.

  11. Barb October 2015 at 10:09 am

    It would have been easier this morning to curl up in a chair and not face the world, but that is not the life I want for myself. It is time to do a gratitude journal this morning and reassure myself there is more good than dark in my world.

    I will take my God box and put the gloomy thoughts in the box and put it in the closet, then I am free to begin with a clear view of all that can be good this day.

    This may sound trivial to some, but being a visual person, I need the vision that I have put away troubling thoughts. Without them, I can maintain sanity for just this day. If this day is good, then I have worked my plan. Let tomorrow take care of tomorrow.

  12. Barb October 2015 at 3:29 pm

    Today I am struggling with detachment – being separated by many miles, my fears are still real that my alcoholic is not in a good place. Having lost several jobs, wrecked three cars, and our budget a disaster, never feel that what I hear is what is real. I guess it is better to accept it as real rather than trying to prove it is not the best. I live with my serenity prayer and know that no matter what I fear, I can change nothing.

    Knowing that relieves pressure, just wish blue skies could open up and all would be well with the world. I am able to find some peace through friends, books and prayers. That is new for me and I love that feeling.

    I know the program will work if I work it – my alcoholic may still be drinking, but the chaos in my life will be more peaceful. That is progress. Life is not always perfect, but good is better than chaos.

    Thanks for Al-Anon and people who know what I am talking about.

  13. Barb October 2015 at 4:44 pm

    I am so happy someone shared this pod with me. On my lonely bleak nights, I can communicate with all who understand what it feels like. I am having to learn that I like myself. I have been hidden so long, I forgot who I was.

    I live with the serenity prayer – I need to be reminded, sometimes many times a day, that I deserve some respect. I hope my brief knowledge will in some way help someone else.

  14. Maria August 2015 at 9:05 am

    I’m trying to work on keeping the focus on myself, but the minute it is time to get up and get going I’d rather pull the sheets over my head and plan ways of how to get in contact with the alcoholic in my life. If I can’t fulfill my plans with him, I end up looking for someone else, such as my kids, or people to do things for. Yet my room is a mess, my budget is out of order, I haven’t worked out, I haven’t been taking care of my healthy eating habits and it sucks!

    Once I begin to focus on myself, I get bored after 2 to 3 weeks and the self-sabotage cycle begins. Right now, I’m trying to put the focus on me.

  15. Jeanette August 2015 at 11:31 am

    I found these 3 points of view very helpful. I have been in Al-Anon many years, but I still need reminders to keep the focus on myself at meetings and in all areas of my life with my attitudes, my behavior, and the tone I use when talking. It is part of my self-care.

  16. mary June 2015 at 12:34 pm

    This hit straight for me. It’s many years in the Al-Anon program, and though I have learned to disengage by way of action, words, or control of situations with respect to others, I still am way off when it comes to being detached in my thoughts — and focusing on my recovery.

    I can be quiet in the doing, but my mind is so not quiet — goes into loops, and that is no good for me. While I do see that being disengaged in the doing for others, the situation does take care of itself. So that is good. God, grant me the serenity to gain the calm in my thoughts too.

  17. Latasha K. April 2015 at 10:13 am

    I give up.

  18. Trish April 2015 at 8:10 pm

    Such an amazing podcast. Thank you. I feel this is something I need to revisit all the time in my own recovery.

  19. ?lkay March 2015 at 9:56 am

    I feel a little bit better.

  20. Becky February 2015 at 8:24 am

    You don’t have to be new to Al-Anon to appreciate the podcasts. What a great and gentle reminder to practice our program 🙂

  21. katherine February 2015 at 11:01 pm

    This has helped me. I can’t deal with my son’s drinking and drama anymore.

  22. Tara January 2015 at 9:27 am

    I have not been keeping the focus on myself. I have felt very sick. I was attending Al-Anon and stopped during my second pregnancy. I have not found the time to get to a meeting. However, I need to and will. I feel unmanageable. I am supposed to have a good weekend visiting my family this weekend and I don’t want to focus on the alcoholic and what he is doing. I need to surrender. This podcast has definitely helped.

  23. Debra December 2014 at 5:25 pm

    I am so grateful for this podcast. I felt like I was in a black hole this morning, and I needed this loving reminder that I am the one who put me in the hole, and I am the only one who can climb out. One step at a time, the 12 Step ladder of Al-Anon has given me tools to reach up and out. No matter what my spouse chooses.

    The darker it gets, the more crucial my self-care. All of my controlling, helping, enabling, secret keeping, even praying. It does no good. I must take care of me and let go. Deep breath. I was going to spend Christmas Eve alone feeling sorry for my self, frozen with fear and pain. I’m not now. Thank you so much.

  24. Kathy November 2014 at 9:32 pm

    This was a very good podcast for me. I’m still building up the courage to focus more on myself instead of trying to fix everybody else. Hopefully I will find an Al-Anon group that works for me.

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