Monday, November 22, 2010


One of the tools of recovery is the constamt reading we do - individually and in meetings.  We learn a lot about self-examination and how to apply spiritual principles - from our books and from the examples from our lives that we share.  I've noticed, though, that application of those principles is so hard it sometimes takes years to accomplish a behavior change.  I start out the day with meditation and prayer and a fervent desire for improvement.  As the day goes on I totally forget and my brain attacks.  Oh God!  I've done whatever it is again - from eating 20 chocolate chip cookies to saying something mean about somebody behind his or her back. 

For example, one of the things I've struggled with and I've heard that a lot of other people do too - is gossip - defined as saying negative things about people who are not present.  Gossip is always an entertaining topic of conversation plus it has the added benefit of making me feel superior.  It's only afterward that I feel crummy - plus what I've said frequently gets back to people and then I really pay a price. 

One of the books we read says something like, "restraint of tongue and pen will pay off handsomely."  And that's very true.  The only problem is that if those negative ideas are in my head, eventually they will come out of my mouth while I'm not looking.  So, although restraint (keeping my mouth shut; minding my own business) is a good thing, it's only the first step.  That's where the inventory comes in.  If I'm monitoring my behavior everyday, I will notice how much effort is going in to restraint and can identify the thoughts that need changing.  The only way to change them though, is to explore why I'm having them - what's really going on with me.  Usually, there's something I'm afraid of or my ego is trying to boost itself by trashing someone else - most of the time because I'm judging myself harshly about something.

Once I've identified what's going on with me, usually I have to talk to someone about it and then ask my higher power to remove what ever it is.  Once the thoughts are straightened out, it's not so hard to behave appropriately.

No comments:

Blog Archive