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Lifeline, OA’s international magazine, serves as an indispensable “meeting-on-the-go.” Since 1962, when the first issue debuted as the OA Bulletin, Lifeline has offered encouragement and hope to thousands of readers. Tucked in a purse, a suitcoat pocket or a lunch bag, Lifeline accompanies members around the world, ready to provide inspiration and support when needed. Print and/or digital versions available. 

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Stepping through the Holidays -- HP’s Holiday Card

I’d like to share a love note Higher Power gave me withTIPS for staying abstinent and sane during the holidays.

Dear One, thanks for getting in touch! Please know this: Nothing you could think, say, or do could make me love or respect you less. If you’re in the food, you’re separating yourself from me and others only by your own guilt and self-loathing. There’s magic in using the OA Tools, working the Steps, and being honest no matter what; change the things you can so you can stay abstinent and we can stay connected this holiday season.

  • Do normal recovery habits times two around the holidays. Make two calls instead of one before holiday food hits the table
  • HALT. Don’t get too Hungry, Angry, Lonely, or Tired because it affects your judgment.
  • Don’t miss out on precious time with your loved ones – none of us know how much time we have left.
  • Carry a notebook wherever you go and be an OA detective; sleuth out resentments, fears, doubts, and sadness. Jump on those trigger monsters and write and talk about them before they can gang up.
  • Get plenty of exercise, especially if you feel depressed, anxious, or too much in your head.
  • Eat abundant, healthy meals you’ve committed to your sponsor and prepared yourself.
  • Bring healthy, abstinent treats everywhere you go.
  • Excuse yourself early to have your own party while others eat dessert. Mention this beforehand so folks don’t think they’ve scared you off.
  • Arrange a temporary holiday food sponsor to check in with before and after meals.
  • Attend meetings, even if some are part of another Fellowship. The support you’ll get is dense, nutrient-rich-fare.
  • Offer service, no matter how small so you’ll feel connected and useful.
  • Plan non-food-related treats such as walks, table tennis matches, card games, and yoga classes.
  • Remember to be loving and gentle with yourself, always. Easy does it; let “progress, not perfection” be your guide. As friends say, “If you have to beat up on yourself, do it with cotton balls”

My phone line is always open. Call me no matter how soft your voice or weak your resolve. I’ll get a message back to you in my own voice or through the voices of helpers. Listen and look, because my reply could come from anywhere and anyone. I love you. No matter how lost or broken you feel (or the world seems), I see perfection. Do what you can, then relax, sip some tea, and let me do the rest.

Love always HP.

-- Rachel K.
-- Lifeline, A Meeting on the Go, p. 14
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