A Person in Long Term Recovery Shares the Impact of BALM on His Recovery, His Family, His Business, and His Life.

By Jim Graham, ACC, CBC

Certified BALM® Family Recovery Life Coach

Today I am in my 22nd year of sobriety.  I am very grateful for the direction that has been given to me, to be a more effective and loving human being.

The BALM® 12 Principles and 7 Steps have played a major role in the expansion of not only recovery, but of my business and personal life as well.

For my family the cycle in generations of addictive and dry drunk thinking and behaviors has been broken.  My wife and my three boys who are now over 20 years old have witnessed a father who continually looks to Be A Loving Mirror®.

Today critical conversations are thought out and scripted.  Facts from all parties are sought out so that fact, not story is the narrative, where solutions can form.  In the past, those same critical confrontations were met with anger, judgement and mistrust.  Today there is no reaction but a process that promotes solution and healing.  Using the 12 Principles and the 7 Steps has me finding fact through loving questions including active listening to truly understand, and moving to what is clear and unclear so that facts are addressed, not story.   It leaves interpretations out and loving solutions in.  When these critical events come up, all parties feel they have been heard and understood.  They see the work behind being understood.  They see the fairness in what is clear and what is unclear. They come to know everyone’s involvement and where they can improve their part as well as others.  Anger and judgement are no longer successful.  Loving conversations and solutions have taken their place.

At work, these principles have saved me, my company, my wife and my brother. Past events once puzzled me, and left me with ­­­­toxic reactions that caused more problems. Now those same events that once puzzled me get turned into loving, long lasting, solutions due to the tools the BALM® has given me.

For instance, we had a situation where my wife and brother found themselves in an argument that escalated from anger to rage. Both were yelling and crying, and a total loss of control took over.  I was able to act calmly because I knew I had the tools.   An event that once controlled me was quickly diffused into a lifetime of lasting solution.  What do I mean by lasting solution?  On that day a very real & relationship threatening was happening.  My wife could quit.  My wife and brother could stop talking with each other.  The business and our private lives would have been guided with anger, toxic behaviors and resentment over an entire lifetime.

Instead, in a matter of four hours of going through one of the many methodical tools we study in BALM®, this time like Medea’s tips for controlling flooding.  We all met with relief and release from the drive of anger an emotion.  All parties were able in this relief to see their part.  Because they felt heard and acknowledged, they now wanted and were willing to find and work on a solution. Once the angry energy passed they remembered that they really loved each other and that was the driver to the solution.

That was three years ago and a lasting narrative of solution prevails. Our old way would have been, “have you heard this one?” “Remember that day three years ago when you did this?” and bam just like that you are right back to that same day.  But, who really wants to live like this for 3 years? Instead, because of learning to Be The Peace, we relate to each other on an entirely different level, as peaceful cooperative colleagues and loving relatives.

Because of the BALM®, I am a better leader, husband, father, brother, son and friend and all other roles I play.  Every day I use the BALM® to be an attractive safe solution compared to the solution of addiction.  The BALM® helps me to remember what my niece said so well, “Auntie there’s a better way to do this.”

Today I’m grateful to know there is a better way.  Today when I have a good day and there are many, it’s because the BALM® guided me to loving solutions and behaviors vs angry solutions and behaviors.