ACCEPTANCE MONTH: DAY 15: “Dare to be different. Find the courage to accept that you may not always fit in, and the peace within to stop looking for the approval of others. Just be the amazing being that you are. People who shine the light of who they truly are, are inspiring to others.” ― Eileen Anglin
Addicts can seldom do this without a lot of Passive-Aggressive attitude.
We CAN LEARN, however, not to be ruled by the values, principles, and opinions of others. What happens then is that we can stop trying to control others with our values, principles, and opinions. This is a great win-win for everyone!
What if we could be that unconditional and let others be everything they wanted to be? Wouldn’t that be great?
Our fear governs us in this realm far too much. We fear that others will not approve of us, so we show them our disdain before they can show theirs. Then, we have relationships where we need for others to be a certain way, because we think it reflects on US. We are THAT self-centered and fearful. Yikes!
I remember a time when I wanted to be with handsome men, not only because I found them attractive, but they were also a reflection of who I was when I was with them. These are things uncovered in inventories that allow me to talk freely about my thinking and how toxic my judgment was for me, and for others. They had to fit a specific profile for me to even go out with them; the right kind of work, the right education, the right amount of money, living in a certain neighborhood, and so on.
I was raised to judge others on this scale. So, of course, I had to climb onto the same scale and judge myself accordingly.
At a very young age, I determined it was not going to work for me. I was so happy to be alive in the 1960s, because we protested and eschewed these values. Sadly, I only could do this with a Passive-aggressive attitude, saying “I don’t give a shit about those things.” It wasn’t true, the judge was living in my mind all the time, weighing and measuring; and it is brutal!
I remember meeting a man in early recovery, around 90-120 days; and he told me something so powerful that I repeat it all the time. “I don’t care” is the biggest lie we ever tell (ourselves or others.)
We care so much it is killing us! We need to get honest about this shit. We die behind it.
So, I stopped telling that lie. And I got real with what was going on in my mind. This is the scariest part of recovery, for me. To tell the truth about how bat-shit crazy my thinking really is!
Most of the time, what I find is that we are all screaming for attention and then hate it when we get it. So, our attempts at being different are usually going to look outrageous. We go for maximum impact sometimes; rather than a true expression of who we are on the inside. We work extremely hard to cover THAT up.
But we can honor what is going on inside us and love ourselves. This takes many years of practicing these principles to truly become a way of life, rather than a statement of disagreement with others. I am happy to say that I am finally getting to this place of deep and wonderful acceptance.