From the BlogMeet Ron

CHUCK 4-11-19

I have learned this: it is not what one does that is wrong,
but what one becomes as a consequence of it. 
–Oscar Wilde
There are countless ways to take shortcuts in life or to grab for pleasures. We could cheat on our income taxes, excuse a food binge, or lie to a loved one about where we’ve been. We say, “It won’t hurt anyone!” “I wouldn’t do it if it weren’t for the other guy.” Or, “Everyone does it.” But if we are to like and respect ourselves, we need to live by the rules we believe in. Whether we get caught or not isn’t the point. We cannot hold values and then repeatedly justify breaking them.
What does it do to us if we constantly fudge on our values? It undermines our self-esteem and damages the faith we have in ourselves. We do not expect to be perfect, but we must be accountable. If we are honest with ourselves, we admit our wrongs and reestablish our self-respect.
Today, I will take care to make choices that match my values.

Financial Goals
Taking responsibility for our financial affairs will improve our self-esteem and lessen anxiety.
Each of us, today, has a present set of financial circumstances. We have a certain amount of money in hand, and money due to us. We have a pile of bills that we owe. We have taxes to pay. Those are our present financial circumstances. No matter what the details are, acceptance, gratitude, and self-responsibility will lessen the stress.
Each of us, today, has a financial future. There are few future aspects of our life we can control, but one part we can play to assist our future is setting goals.
We don’t have to obsess about our goals. We don’t have to constantly watch and mark our progress toward them. But it is beneficial to think about our goals and write them down. What do we want to happen in our financial future? What financial problems would we like to solve? What bills would we like to be rid of? What would we like to be earning at the end of this year? The end of next year? Five years from now?
Are we willing to work for our goals and trust our Higher Power to guide us?
Pay bills on time. Contact creditors. Make arrangements. Do your best, today, to take responsibility for your finances. Set goals for the future. Then, let go of money and concentrate on loving. Taking responsibility for our financial affairs does not mean making money our focus. Taking responsibility for our finances enables us to take our focus off money. It frees us to do our work and live the life we want.
  We deserve to have the self-esteem and peace that accompanies financial responsibility.
Today, I will take the time necessary to be responsible for myself financially.
If it is time to pay bills or talk to creditors, I will do that. If it is time to set goals,
I will do that. Once I have done my part, I will let the rest go.
Let yourself change and grow
There are lots of hermit crabs in the tide pools near my house. They’re interesting little creatures. A hermit crab will find a shell that fits him, put it on, and live in it. After a while, he grows and the shell no longer fits, so the crab scurries along the seafloor and finds another shell to live in. He crawls out of his first shell and into the shell that fits his new needs. This scene repeats itself again and again throughout his life.
       Learn a lesson from the hermit crabs.
Just because a decision was right for you yesterday, doesn’t mean it meets your needs today. People grow. People change. And sometimes we have to let our safe little places go, in order to grow and change.
Are you holding on to something that doesn’t work anymore, just because it’s safe and what you know? It could be a behavior pattern– such as feeling victimized in all your relationships or wearing yourself out trying to control what you can’t.
Thank the lessons, people, and places of the past for all they’ve taught you. Thank your survival behaviors for helping you cope. There’s nothing wrong with feeling comfortable and safe– having lifetime friends and a career that serves us well. But don’t get so comfortable that you can’t let go and move on when it’s time. If the walls are too confining and limiting and you’re feeling stuck and bored, maybe it’s time to get out and find a new shell. There’s another shell waiting that will fit you better, but you can’t move into it until you leave this one behind.
God, show me the behaviors, things, people, and places that I’ve outgrown. Then give me the faith to let go.

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