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Flow In, Flow Out Weekender Thread, December 14-18, 2017

Old 12-14-2017, 03:14 AM
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Flow In, Flow Out Weekender Thread, December 14-18, 2017

There’s an old saying, “No man is an island.”

That’s the design, anyway. I have heard that in order to fully flourish we need both a source of input to our souls and a source of output. A pond with no input or output eventually evaporates. A pond with an output with no input will quickly be drained. With no input, a pond’s water grows too salty to use.

In order for human beings to function best, we need a steady input of inspiration and warmth. That inspiration and warmth should combine with our own thoughts and sentiments and increase; and then we should allow it to flow out to enrich others.

You may think, “Ha! I’m a zero—I have nothing profound to offer!”

Everybody’s got something to offer; who says it has to be “profound”?

And we may feel that we have no opportunity for meaningful interaction with others. For a long time when we were drinking, we grew more and more isolated and self-absorbed; so when we quit we can feel terribly alone and cut off from the rest of humanity.

There are environments that specialize in welcoming “outcasts” like us: AA groups, churches and other places of worship, and online forums dedicated to special common interests (like SR). Look for contact that inspires you; limit contact that aggravates you.

And then look for areas in which your ideas and insights can flow out to others. Any of the above places will work—also consider volunteering in your community. That will take your gaze out of your own navel and help you to connect with and care about others.

Whatever endeavor you choose to invest in, give it your very best. Don’t try something just for five minutes, then walk away when there’s not an immediate payoff. The key is to invest yourself. Be willing to put time and work into your relationships. Force yourself to develop patience (if you have a HP, definitely ask for help. It’s hard to switch to better mindsets in our own strength).

The only way to discover what all you have to give is to start trying to give something. You’ll find it easier as you go along—and it will bring you true joy to bring joy to others.

But you can’t give what you don’t have. Look for people (including a HP), books and other materials that bring you joy. Enrich yourself, and then you’ll be happy to enrich others.

Your life will no longer be stagnant if you have both inflow and outflow.
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Old 12-14-2017, 03:30 AM
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Shotgun!
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Old 12-14-2017, 03:33 AM
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Yay, MB!

Great to see you! You’ve been missed!
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Old 12-14-2017, 03:47 AM
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Thank you Gilmer - great thoughts
good to see you MB!

D
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Old 12-14-2017, 03:55 AM
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Thank you, Gilmer, for the great opener!

I will add my 2 cents about what we can always give. It takes time to get self-worthiness off the low of the lowest. It may take a serious effort to find what we can offer.

Just engage. The process of action and engagement will bring it to the light.

And we can always give someone our genuine attention. "Wherever you are, be there". We can listen to other person without sneaking a glance to our smartphone. It' so simple, but so valuable.

And a small remark since I represent HP-minus part of the community, I would also like to add some perspective for those who may be confused by various definitions of HP. it is not harder to make it without HP per se. It requires another kind of faith - in our strength, intelligence, ability to grow, explore, face fear and do it anyway, and valuable skill to dance with uncertainty. It is all here, but it needs to be awaken, developed and trained daily.

But enough serious talk.

The weekend is starting!

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Old 12-14-2017, 03:59 AM
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Thank you, Gilmer and Dee.

Been battling with depression for a while.

Getting back on track.
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Old 12-14-2017, 05:04 AM
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Wonderful opening post Gilmer, in the past I have found it worthwhile to to work at friendships, it has been rewarding so your post is a timely reminder.

Congratulations on shotgun MidnightBlue! Good to see you.
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Old 12-14-2017, 05:53 AM
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Absolutely love the pond metaphor!

Instant gratification has always been something that has limited me. I've tried so many new things but haven't stuck with them. I would LOVE to learn how to play the guitar, and I've tried many times, but it is SO HARD, so I give up. It's been a struggle for me since gaining my sobriety, I'm bored all the time. I have nothing to turn to, and I can't seem to find anything that quenches that thirst.

Wonderful post, thank you for your insight Gilmer! I'm in for a sober weekend and Sunday marks 90 days for me, so it'll be a happy weekend for me.
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Old 12-14-2017, 06:06 AM
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This is really so profound and so needed on SR and our daily lives, Gilmer. Thank you for saying it - and in a way that is positive and hopeful and instructive. I'm not even a little bit awake, I just sat down with coffee - but I know it was good. I have a lot of thoughts about this but I have to be very careful. I'll think about it!

MidnightBlue, I've been thinking about you. Thanks for posting. I get it about the Blues. ((bigcyberhug))

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Old 12-14-2017, 06:09 AM
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I'm in!

Great OP, Gilmer. I have found that connecting with others and really listening to them is so much easier sober. I don't feel like I have all that much to offer the world most of the time, but then someone will thank me for the things I do (work, family, friends) and I realize just being there and doing my best to be authentic and work hard is an offering to the universe. And people do notice. I don't do these things for the recognition, but it is a nice feeling when my efforts don't go unnoticed. It keeps me going.
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Old 12-14-2017, 07:16 AM
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thanks for the opening post Gilmer. I spent a long time whilst drinking convincing myself that I didn't need anyone else (& that I didn't have anything to offer them). since getting sober I've been pleasantly surprised that I've been able to help people in little ways, & that I quite like being around other people. "Flow in, flow out" makes me think of Mr Miyagi for some reason

nice to see you MidnightBlue, hope you are feeling a bit better
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Old 12-14-2017, 09:57 AM
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I am IN. This is a fantastic topic. Alcohol is the sludge that creates a stoppage in or out or both. Getting sober has been an uneven job of clearing that debris. Still have a long way to go in bot input and output.

Thank you, Gilmer. Midnight...
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Old 12-14-2017, 10:19 AM
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I did watch a documentary on the Aral Sea and Salton Sea a couple of months ago which was quite tough.
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Old 12-14-2017, 11:03 AM
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Originally Posted by saoutchik View Post
I did watch a documentary on the Aral Sea and Salton Sea a couple of months ago which was quite tough.
Truly, it is a powerful metaphor, isnt it??

I would like to modify my previous statement. Along the lines of “people kill people” ...although for the unrelated record, I am a proponent of gun control.....ok, the modification:

For me...selfishness is the actual debris, and alcohol acted as the binder creating true blockage of the cement variety! Again, for me...even fear and anxiety are selfish at the base. More generously, they are based in self-interest and I work overtime in my mind on self-interest. So taking even small breaks from pure self-interest is a relief, and has been an early step in emotional freedom.
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Old 12-14-2017, 11:05 AM
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I am hanging out here a bit to the extreme today. I feel weak and emotionally a-flutter. So...reading and posting...and it helps.
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Old 12-14-2017, 11:08 AM
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Great post Gilmer thank you. I'm in for the weekend. Away from home family meet up for Christmas but I will not drink.
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Old 12-14-2017, 12:27 PM
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Take care of yourself Bix.

A couple of hundred metres/yards from my flat is party central but I sense there are less drunken states than last year (this is hardly scientific) and young and youngish people enjoying themselves without getting wasted. It could be my imagination I suppose.
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Old 12-14-2017, 12:47 PM
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Thanks Gilmer......love your post. In for the weekend.
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Old 12-14-2017, 01:32 PM
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Originally Posted by saoutchik View Post
I did watch a documentary on the Aral Sea and Salton Sea a couple of months ago which was quite tough.
The Salton Sea is not that far from where I live, Sao. I went there back in February on a little driving vacation exploring the California desert. It does have fish in it (mostly Tilapia) but approaching the water line, there are scads of dead fish carcasses on the beach. It actually smells like the ocean when you approach it. Right now, the authorities are not quite sure what to do about it. It gets highly polluted from agricultural runoff, because (with some help from irrigation), the hot, dry Imperial Valley where it is located is a very productive agricultural region due to the year-round growing season. A lot of North America's winter vegetables come from the Imperial Valley.
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Old 12-14-2017, 01:41 PM
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Desertdawg....do they have to “do” anything about Salton? It isn't the first “dead sea”. What will happen if left alone?
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