Monday, November 24, 2014

Rediscovering A Communication Tool

wish this was my shed!
Recently, the hubby and I cleaned out our shed.  It had become a catchall for things we didn’t know what to do with, but didn’t want to get rid of, you know, just in case we needed it again. 

Through the passage of time, some of the things that were placed in there were forgotten.  They became rusted, warped, and no longer usable.  The neglect was evident. We had to choose what was salvageable, what we’d use again, and what should just be donated or tossed into the trash. 

Our recoveries are similar to those long forgotten items in the shed.  We have program tools tucked away for a later date, techniques worn from constant use, and things that didn’t work and were discarded.

One of the tools we rediscovered in our recovery together was FANOS. Some of you may remember me talking about FANOS a couple of years ago. 

It’s a check-in conversation that works like this:

F is for Feelings

Each person shares theirs feelings for the day.  If they felt triggered by anger or disappointment, they can talk it through.  It’s also a chance to share successes and happiness.

A is for Affirmations

This is an opportunity to let your partner know you support them and let them know you love and have faith in them.  Something like, “I promise to have open and honest communication with you.” Or, “I affirm to continue to work on my recovery.”

N is for Needs

If you need your partner to do something, now is the perfect time to ask.  Maybe it’s a request to have patience with you or take time to listen to your concerns.  It’s also an opportunity to let your partner know what you need to do for yourself.  It could be quiet time to write or do step work.

O is for Ownership

This is a chance to apologize for your actions.  “I’m sorry I snapped at you earlier.” Or, “I need to let you know I forgot to do that favor you asked of me.”

S is for Sobriety and Self-Care

If the addict is struggling with their recovery and had a slip, this is a great way to tell their partner.  There’s no yelling in FANOS, only love and support.  It’s also the perfect time to share what you’ve been doing in your recovery to maintain sobriety.  Perhaps you talked to your sponsor, or worked on your steps, now’s your chance to let your partner know.  It will help them feel reassured in your recovery.


It’d been quite some time since we used the communication tool.  We’d fallen into a comfortable, albeit stagnant, place in our marriage.  We didn’t think we needed it anymore and it slowly fell away.

But, when you’re married to a recovering addict, and you’re one too, you have to work on your recovery everyday or things can become wonky. You tend to turn inwards instead of turning to your partner.

FANOS is one of several recovery tools we took out of the program shed, cleaned up, and put back into use.  And, things have been smooth ever since. We're back to communicating the way we used to.

 What’s your favorite way to connect with your partner? Is it time to clean out your communication shed or garage? What about your real storage place, does that need to be organized?

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Can I get organized? - IWSG Post

Is it really the first Wednesday in November and time for the Insecure Writer’s Support Group again?  I feel like this month has just flown by and I’ve gotten nothing accomplished.  How is that possible? 

I’ll blame the class I’m taking.  It’s a tax class and the homework has been brutal.  Still, I love it.  It’s been a great way for me to test out the waters and see if I’m ready to go back to work. I’m happy to say I think I’m able to return to the working world once more.  My migraines have greatly reduced since I started Botox again.  Yay for me.

But, tax school has left my writing on the back burner the last couple of weeks and that makes me kinda sad.  Sure, I write but not as much as I'd like to.  I received my critiques back from Robyn and Donna for my nonfiction book and my edits back from Bryan for my fictional book (you guys rock, thank you!) and I want to dig into them but I just haven’t had time.  

Will I ever find the time I need to edit, write, and blog again?

I know the answer is yes. Things are just a bit hectic right now.  I can schedule time for writing if I have to.  I'll be organized instead of doing it whenever the mood strikes me throughout the week.  I’ve worked too hard on both of my books to just let them fall away when they're so close to being published.  

I know I can do this!

Plus, it's a great place to be in my writing.  I'd rather have too much to do than feel like I'm stuck in one place or, worse yet, have no ideas roaming around this brain of mine.

How about you?  Do you schedule your writing/project time or are you like me and fly by the seat of your pants?

This has been an Insecure Writer's Support Group post.  Please join us in  sharing our fears, frustrations, and offering words of wisdom with other writers.  The co-hosts this month are:   LG Keltner, Donna Hole, Lisa Buie-Collard and SL Hennessy!  Please swing by and say hello to them.