Lifeline Jan12

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LifelineA Meeting on the Go

P rogram Saved My Life

A ction PlanJanuary 2012

OA Lifeline

The Ninth Tool: Action PlanIts not what you might think.

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The international magazine of Overeaters Anonymous, Inc.Overeaters Anonymous PreambleOvereaters Anonymous is a Fellowship of individuals who, through shared experience, strength and hope, are recovering from compulsive overeating. We welcome everyone who wants to stop eating compulsively. There are no dues or fees for members; we are self-supporting through our own contributions, neither soliciting nor accepting outside donations. OA is not affiliated with any public or private organization, political movement, ideology or religious doctrine; we take no position on outside issues. Our primary purpose is to abstain from compulsive overeating and to carry this message of recovery to those who still suffer. STAFF

Finding Sanity in the StormThe tools could be your action plan.

January 2012

Vol. 40, No.1

My Action Plan Is . . .Gain inspiration from these members plans. A Simple Plan Action-Packed Days

Evolving Action Planspg. 2

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Action plans must change to meet the needs. Fit Food Around Life Healthy Prescription Higher Author High Allegiance

Where Would I Be Without OA?Lifeline presents experiences and opinions of OA members and members of the WSO staff as directed by the Board of Trustees. Opinions expressed herein are not to be attributed to Overeaters Anonymous as a whole, nor does publication of any article imply endorsement, either by Overeaters Anonymous or Lifeline. Manuscripts are invited, although no payment can be made nor can contributed matter be returned. Please include your full name and address with your letter or manuscript. For writers desiring anonymity in publication, indicate specifically whether this applies to name, city, state and/or country. Manuscripts and letters sent to Lifeline are assumed intended for publication and subject to editing. All manuscripts and letters submitted become the property of Overeaters Anonymous, Inc., and are, therefore, unconditionally assigned to Overeaters Anonymous, Inc., for publication and copyright purposes. Back issues are $3.Terry Stuart Publications Manager Kathleen Bougre Periodicals Editor/ Designer/Photographer Christine Fredriksen Associate Editor/Illustrator Mary Young Publications Assistant Please direct submissions to Lifeline, PO Box 44020, Rio Rancho, New Mexico 87174-4020 USA, or email info@oa.org Registered OA service bodies may reprint individual articles from Lifeline for limited personal and group use, crediting Lifeline and Overeaters Anonymous. Material from Lifeline may not be revised, recombined into other publications or resold. All other uses require written permission from OA, Inc. Misuse of this material constitutes copyright infringement. Contact the WSO editorial office: 1-505-891-2664.

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These members look back with relief. Overflowing With Miracles OA Life Raft Gods Clinic

OA Saved My Life!Were it not for OA, these members might not be sharing today. Saved and More! Whole New World Never Gave Up Hope, Support and Self-Esteem 50 Is Not Enough

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Side Dishes Living Traditions Stepping Out Service With a Smile The Spiritual Path Newcomers Corner Larry & Leona

FEATURES

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OA Saved Me From AnorexiaSnatched from an untimely end, these members are grateful to OA. Its All the Same Disease Unconditional Love OA Life Support

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DEPARTMENTSFor Discussion and Journaling Ask-It Basket Share It Article Alert Web Links 17 24 25 25 26

Deadly TruthPerhaps its time to face the real consequences.

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Call for Submissions: Share Your Recovery Story

Lifeline, ISSN No. 1051-9467, is published monthly except April and October by Overeaters Anonymous, Inc., 6075 Zenith Court NE, Rio Rancho, NM 87144-6424 USA. Subscription rates US, US Possessions: one year $23. Canada priority air service: $29 per year. Outside US/Canada priority air service: $38 per year. POSTMASTER: send address changes to Lifeline, PO Box 44020, Rio Rancho, NM 87174-4020 USA. 2012 OVEREATERS ANONYMOUS, INC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Moving? Let us know! Contact OA: telephone505-891-2664, fax 505-891-4320, email info@oa.org Overeaters Anonymous, PO Box 44020, Rio Rancho, NM 87174-4020 USA

A C T

The Ninth Tool:

Finding Sanity in the StormWhile active in my addiction, life was always about the easier, softer way. My way was quick and dirty; I hurried to finish the job, even if it was shabbily done. I never thought about what or why I was doing it (except to have it my way).mouth shut or looking at my part when I would rather blame another person. To attain abstinence (sobriety) in OA and work the Steps, I must do it of my own volition. When I made an honest commitment to work this program, my life experienced dramatic change. Where depression once held me hostage, stuck on the couch, today depression doesnt exist. The numbers on the scale used to control how I felt about my body and what I did with my food. Today I accept my body. When I look in the mirror, I can say, I love you. I no longer need to restrict. My insane thinking is gone. If for some reason something changes, I talk to God (HP) and my sponsor. Then I take whatever action they (not the addictive part of my brain) tell me is necessary. I used to feel lonely in a room full of people; it didnt matter who was there or how many people I knew. In my loneliness I became more demanding, pushing people away. Today I call my friends heart friends. We know each other intimately, like each other and want to be friends. They are there for me when I reach out for help. My life is so different today because of the changes in my attitudes and me. Its because I walked into my first OA meeting 25 years ago. Thank you, OA. As the Big Book says, If you have decided you want what we have and are willing to go to any length to get itthen you are ready to take certain steps (Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th ed., p. 58). Norinne M., Fort Myers, Florida USA I never planned meals, and I decided what to eat just before it was time to cook. If I didnt have anything, we went out. My finances and work history were the same way. When I wanted something, I bought it. I had no long-term goals. My future was all about now. I stayed at a job until bored. I had no idea what I wanted to do, where I wanted to go or what was my ideal job. I cared about making more money so I could buy what I wanted or pay for things already purchased. In my struggle to survive, I pushed the world away so I could cope with life and things I avoided. As the Big Book says, We alcoholics are undisciplined (Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th ed., p. 88). To change my life, I had to change what I was doing and how I was doing it. OA has given me that opportunity. Working with my sponsor and sponsees incorporated several tools into our lives that I call daily disciplines: telephone, food plan, writing, meetings, service, literature, anonymity and action plan. Using these daily, we change ourselves, and the disciplines become habits; the habits become instinctual. When we meet a bump in the road, we fall back on these habits. They are our action plana way for us to find sanity in the storm. Recovery is about change; changing ourselves is hard work. Often I felt scared and wanted to leave saying, I quit. It meant doing something even though I wanted to run away; listening to something I didnt want to hear; keeping my

Action Plan

When I first learned a motion was before the 2010 WSBC for adding a ninth tool that had to do with moving, I thought, Oh no! I have to do the dreaded E: exercise. The motion was passed with revisions. Okay, it didnt sound too bad. In the meantime I had started walking.At the 2011 WSBC, delegates voted on the definition of action plan. It included much more than movement. I now realize I have been following an action plan since I started program! My first actions were getting a sponsor and food plan, and then becoming willing to take direction and work the Steps. My action plan has evolved over the years. I have worked on balancing work and family; dealt with financial insecurity; organized my home; and taken care of medical, dental and vision issues. I have incorporated meditation into my daily routine, and prayer is essential for remembering who is in chargeGod, not me. I am maintaining a 210-pound (95-kg) weight loss, but as I age (I am 65 and a half ), my weight has fluctuated. I have two choices: to refine my food plan and/or to exercise. That dreaded E word has found me again. My choice today is to exercise. I walk every day for 25 minutes at a safe, but challenging, pace. I stretch and lift weights three times a week. I am also starting yoga. My action plan may change as life changes. As long as my focus is on physical, spiritual and emotional recovery, my actions will align with my Higher Power. God gave me this life as a gift; I want to return it with appreciation. Karen C., Largo, Florida USA

2 Lifeline

A Meeting on the Go

January 2012

www.oa.org

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My Action Plan Is . . .ASimple PlanI am a person of extremes. So when I first saw our new OA tool, action plan, I thought, See! OA is telling me to make my (impossible to achieve) to-do lists! The definition of action plan confirmed at the 2011 World Service Business Conference squashed my grandiose dream of doing more than humanly possible because it was a tool of recovery.

Action-Packed Days

However, HP took over and the definition of action plan finally sunk in. It became apparent that my action plan needed to include simple, attainable daily goals. My