Thursday, January 31, 2012
Thou shalt not should thyself. —-Anonymous
When someone tells us we should do something, do we want to do it, or do we feel mad that someone else is telling us what we want to do? Sometimes we forget that these messages are not our own, but are the desires of others. It's important to listen to what we tell ourselves, to be aware of which messages we're giving ourselves and which come from others. We can make a list of all our shoulds and identify where they came from: parent, boss, friend, self. Then we can decide which shoulds are want to's, and throw out the rest. Doing what we want to is very different from doing what we should, and we can usually do a better job of it.
Have I freed myself of shoulds today?
From Today's Gift: Daily Meditations for Families ©
Twenty-Four Hours a Day
Walk In Dry Places
No Justified Resentments
One of the greatest hurdles in sobriety is the so-called justified resentment. We feel that we have a right to be angry at somebody who has hurt or offended us. This feeling might be correct if our anger could remedy the matter and bring it to a just conclusion, but this hardly ever happens. If we are angry, we usually want revenge more than we want justice. Uncontrolled anger will make us behave as unjustly as those who harmed us did. This means more trouble.
Whether revenge is sought or not, anger also poisons our own lives. Emmet Fox compared it to the insane practice of drinking prussic acid. People cannot take a drink of acid and then assign it to the person they detest. They will bear its effect in their own bodies. In the same way, our anger produces its own acids, which destroy our peace of mind and make us ineffective.
We can deal with "justified resentment" by reminding ourselves that there's no justification for the pain and sickness a festering resentment will cause in our lives. There is no justified resentment.
Action for Today: Today I may have to swim against the tide by not getting upset over matters that enrage others. I will not let myself be drawn into the angry currents around me.
Abandon yourself to your Higher Power as you understand them.
Admit your faults to Them and to your fellows.
Clear away the wreckage of your past.
Give freely of what you find and join us.
- Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 164
Thought to Ponder . . .
Trust your Higher Power. Clean house. Help others.
AA-related 'Alconym' . . .
F A I T H = Found Always In Trusting Her/Him
If a negative thought should happen to arise, you can let it get you down or you can let it go. Yes, you can simply choose to let it go.
Although negative thinking may indeed feel comfortable and familiar, eventually it leads to great pain. Let it go.
Perhaps you assume you have to be negative in order to be realistic. That’s not the case.
By all means, acknowledge and accept the reality of your situation. Then choose to deal with it in a positive, purposeful manner.
Your future is determined by the way you choose to approach it. Approach it with the best of expectations, and you’ll make your future the very best it can be.
Give yourself a positive outlook, moment after moment, day after day. And you’ll be giving yourself a positive, fulfilling life.
— Ralph Marston