April 26, 2011
I have inherited my anger. Often a myth about anger is that my anger tendencies are inherited and cannot be changed. Research evidence indicates that people are not born with their angry tendencies rather that their anger is a learned behavior. We learn by watching others (our parents, teachers, and friends) and with some effort, our learned anger tendencies can be re-programmed.
All anger is aggressive. This anger myth is a misconception. This belief holds the only way to express anger is by being aggressive. There are many different positive and assertive ways to express your anger. Controlling your anger involves practice in assertiveness training, changing your negative self talk, challenging your faulty beliefs, and using a thought stopping process to control your immediate angry impulse.
To get what you deserve in life, you have to be aggressive. Don’t confuse assertiveness with aggression. The purpose of aggression is always to cause harm, dominate, intimidate, or to win at any cost. On the other hand, the purpose of assertiveness is to express your anger in positive and healthy way that is respectful of other people and yourself. When you express yourself in an assertive manner that does not blame or threaten other people and minimizes the chance of emotional harm you will learn that you gain respect.
Venting is the best way to deal with anger. For many years, therapists taught that the aggressive expression of anger, such as beating on pillows, or punching walls was therapeutic and healthy. We have found that people who vent their anger aggressively simply get better at being angry. In other words, venting anger in an aggressive manner reinforces aggressive behavior.
Please answer the following questions about your anger:
1. Have you ever believed any of these myths about anger?
2. Who have you learned your negative patterns of behavior from?
3. Define what it means to be assertive.
4. What are some coping skills that you can rely on to curb your angry outbursts?
5. I also learned this about my anger . . .
April 18, 2011
I recently picked up Grace for You by Dr. John MacArthur. It is a small book and a very easy read. I read the entire book in about 45 min. I expected , a thought provoking light read. What I got was a clear explanation of the prodigal son’s life. Dr. MacArthur challenged the way I viewed this parable, and the way I view sin and forgiveness. I was expecting a light read and received a heavy heart. I wasn’t ready for the flood of thoughts and emotions that accompanied this 58 page book. . . nor was I ready to have my counseling worldview challanged.
I wanted to quote one small passage from the book:
“The tenacity of some sinners is impossible to explain rationally. Some people are so determined to have their own way that even when they are forced-fed the distasteful consequences of their transgressions, they still will not give up the pursuit. They might literally be sick to death of their sin’s repercussions, and yet they will not give up the sin itself. Sin is a bondage they are powerless to break. . . We can’t possibly atone for the sins we have committed, so we can’t make out guilt go away. There is absolutely no earthly answer for such a dilemma. It will not be found in psychology, group therapy, or self-help — and it is certainly not found in drugs, alcohol, or any other form of escape. . . “ Dr. MacArthur then goes on to explain the role of forgiveness like I have never heard it explained before!
I must say this little book is packed full of powerful punches that will keep me thinking and changing for days to come. I give Grace for You a 2 thumbs WAY up! I challange you to pick up a copy and see for yourself. It makes a perfect read along for the Easter season. Of let me know and you can borrow my copy. . . if you can read through all the underlining and scribbling
March 31, 2011
Visit us on Facebook and check under notes! “Self Discovery Worksheet” has been posted for free!
March 23, 2011
March 16, 2011
One of my New Years resolutions was to start reading more. . . so I did. I started reading “Your Money Map – A Proven 7-Step Guide to True Financial Freedom” by Howard Dayton. I thought it looked interesting and ‘Who couldn’t use some financial tips’.
I finished it today and really wanted to tell you about it. I really enjoyed it. Howard Dayton is a master at explaining money and has laid out a easy 7-Step way to become financially free!
I think the chapter on credit card use should be read by everyone! “If you can’t pay it off every month. . . don’t use credit cards!” He talks about simple steps to set your financial affairs in order and how to stay debt free.
His book is loaded with tips, websites, and more. . . It is a great resource.
I don’t agree with all areas of the book, but feel it is a good start to getting out of debt. I also enjoyed the easy reader friendly style. I often find myself reading a page or two and having to put my book down. Mr. Dayton’s book lends itself to this style of reader well. Overall I have to give it two thumbs up! I hope you pick up a copy for yourself, of just ask to borrow my copy (if you can read through all my scribbles).
Visit Dayton’s website at www.crownmoneymap.org
She was born Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta. A city kid, she lived in a duplex on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. Both parents were professionals. Her father was a corporate executive and her mother a vice president at Verizon.
Raised a Roman Catholic, Stefani was enrolled in Covenant of the Sacred Heart, a private all-girls school that dates back to 1881. (Enrollment is exclusive and expensive; tuition is $35,000 per year.)
Former classmates report that as she grew older she also grew more eccentric, but still maintained a semblance of normalcy. In high school, she was reportedly the only one in her class with a job, waiting on tables at a local diner.
Not surprisingly, Stefani was drawn to music as a young girl. She loved the Beatles and Pink Floyd and even started her own classic rock cover band. But she found both classic and modern artists too tame and boring. So when it came to developing her own image, she became determined to stand out by sticking out. She studied the stars, from Prince to Madonna, and slowly carved out her niche. A friend began to regularly critique her habit and style and once lectured her on always maintaining a consistent celebrity persona. When she showed up to the studio wearing sweatpants, the friend was blunt:
“Prince doesn’t pick up ice cream at the 7-Eleven looking like Chris Rock,” she was told. “You’re an artist now. You can’t turn this on and off.”
Stefani Germanotta has taken those words to heart, and reportedly wants even long-time friends to call her by her stage name, Lady Gaga. Her acts have become increasingly bizarre and disturbing, which is exactly her intention. Each generation seems to try and push the envelope further than the last.
I am not inclined toward celebrity psycho-analysis, and, candidly, find it strange to even write the word “Gaga.” But when millions of young people download her music and watch her videos, parents are wise to take note of what the hype and hoopla is all about.
In Born This Way, the claim is made that you’re born either heterosexual or homosexual. Don’t fight it – simply accept and embrace it.
The problem is, researchers are not sure about what causes homosexuality. Many are concluding it is a complex combination of things, but it is not as clear cut as simply genetic material.
The pulse and pace of modern culture can usually be determined from its music and movies, not faith and reason. That a song advocating for a genetic determinative for homosexuality sits atop the charts is disconcerting, but not entirely shocking. From the outside looking in, two things strike me.
First, by Stefani Germanotta’s own admission, she’s built her entire persona and celebrity on a platform that’s anything but typical. She is playing a part, a role, and not living as she would outside the bright lights. Put another way, Lady Gaga was clearly not born this way.
Second, and more importantly, the message found within the lyrics of Born This Way is in stark contrast to the message of the Gospel. All of us are born into sin, the Bible tells us, with desires and resulting actions that separate us from God and put us at odds with His blueprint for our lives. But the Good News is we’re not hopelessly trapped in our sin and failure. Despite the fact that we were “born this way,” each of us can be set free – from homosexuality, or heterosexual sex outside of marriage, or pornography, or greed, or gossip, or any other human shortcoming – to be the men and women God intended us to be.
So why does Lady Gaga continue to try and shock and rattle the establishment? Why does any celebrity?
Deep down, Stefani Germanotta wants to know what we all want to know. She wants to know that she matters. And you know what? She does matter – to the God of the universe, the Creator of heaven and earth.
As Christians we know that our significance is not found in stardom, but in becoming a part of God’s family through Jesus Christ’s sacrifice on the cross. He was born in Bethlehem and died on Calvary that way – so that we might live His way, redeemed and healed by His wounds (Isaiah 53:5).
Blog re-posted from JIM DALY at Focus On The Family.
February 21, 2011
Effects on my spiritual life:
As a result of my use, I put up with a lot. Often by my so called friends who just wanted to get high. Now even to this day I guard myself from any meaningful friendships in fear of being used. I tried to fix my loneliness by using. I knew that my drugs loved me and wouldn’t turn their back on me. Sober, I wouldn’t steal or lie, but when using drugs this became an essential function in my life. Before using I didn’t have faith in anything or anyone. I felt that the world was hell and that was the best I could get. I never talked to anyone about this, and I made using the only thing I could possible have fun doing. Since I have been sober, I have been going to church and seeking God in the best way that I know how.
Effects on my emotional Life:
Going through all these points of my life fills me with remorse. Even to this day I have a hard time being happy or admitting my fear. Most of my using was justified by thinking the world dealt this hand to me, and nobody really cared. I was often depressed and hated who I was the whole time I used. Today, I accept life and actually like who I am becoming. I’ve realized life is a gift from God. He will help me through my addiction. My addiction will always be there, but if I keep fighting with God on my side, it will never defeat me. That makes me confident in my recovery, and I optimistically anticipate the future.
This 6 part story is written by a Meth user. His name and some situations have been changed to protect him. If you like this story please let us know. An addiction is a very hard thing to overcome and this series was written to show you the effects drugs can have on your life. Get help now if you have an addiction, don’t let it ruin your life.
February 9, 2011
Effects on my body:
I’ve dropped a lot of friends that I’ve known since elementary school and it sucks because I loved them like family. I’ve also had friends even girlfriends that watched me destroy myself, and kept their distance because of my drugs. I lied to them on a daily basis and abused any trust in me that may have had just to get my next high. As far as dealers they never gave me a hard time, I soon became a dealer. Nobody gave me a hard time because they were all coming to me to get high. I’ve been called a junkie by my brother, and every time a family member would try to talk to me I would manipulate and intellectualize the situation often debating their wrongs in their lives opposed to my own. The old me was very confident and self centered. Sex to me was something to do when I was really tweaking. I would be so high that I would often go for hours not caring about the other participant. If they screamed for me to stop, I would push harder feeding off the pain. I never used sex to get drugs, I used drugs to get sex. I guess I was the seducer, but thank God I didn’t get any diseases from anyone. I often look back now and feel terrible of how I treated others, but I can’t change the past. . . just be different in the future.
Effects on My Finances:
I’ve added all the money I have lost and its somewhere around at least $75,000. This is insane! Granted I manufactured most of what I used, I still spent this much on rehab, court costs, impulsive spending, and gas to get my supplies. I could have bought a house for the cash I have wasted on dope.
January 10, 2011
Affects on My Behavior:
My using never really caused anger, I had more of a problem with accountability, managing my money, and honesty. I have had a few blackouts, mainly alcohol related. I can remember one occasion that I blacked out at a party. My friends told me that I acted crazy and was picking fights with random people. They even told me that I hit a guy and knocked him to the ground, and that I wouldn’t stop hitting him. I didn’t believe it at first because I’ve never been violent. But a friend videotaped it and I got to watch myself beat on this guy.
I couldn’t believe what I had done, and didn’t understand how I didn’t get into trouble for it. It turned out that nobody really knew the guy and he just left. My lucky day I guess. Usually these blackouts lasted until I woke up the next morning. I have never been paranoid sober or high. I really never cared if I got caught because I never had been caught before.
As far as injuries are concerned, I have bumped my head a couple times, and had my nose busted in a bar fight, but nothing real major. My biggest physical threat while using would have to be playing with chemicals with no regards to safety. Handling volatile chemicals constantly with no gloves, testing different chemical reactions, and even trying new chemicals and switching one for the other with no idea of what the outcome would be. A lot of the chemicals that I used were stolen and I probably should have been arrested numerous times for theft (which I would never do now that I am sober).
The craziest part of it all is that I did it for money. Selling the dope I made was easy, but 90% of the time I would smoke my profits away. This caused me to have to go steal again. I have been arrested for possession of marijuana, criminal conversion, and manufacturing Methamphetamine. Being arrested is embarrassing and relieving all at the same time, because they were saving me from myself. I was high on Meth all three times I was arrested. Being locked up is not fun and you never get used to it. Every time (except now) I used shortly after being released. I am doing everything in my power this time to not let that happen.