July 21

PATIENCE MONTH: DAY 21: “Don’t look at yourself through the eyes of others. Instead look at yourself with eyes of compassion, forgiveness, and patience. Look at yourself with acceptance and love.” ― Akiroq Brost

It is really important that I carefully identify those character defects, even though it is not my job to rid myself of them.

Often, we make a list or determine what they are, based on some religious or social construct. These are not going to help us. The “rules” we may have learned in our lives are not necessarily the same rules that apply to being a good person.

Lying and stealing either to or from you are not good. But what is more deadly to ME is the lying and stealing I perpetuate on myself. If I do that, it does not matter if I quit lying and stealing to and from you, because it is not possible for me to truly do it.

There are forms of violence and harm that are socially acceptable. However, they run against the grain of what we are here to do in recovery. My experience with religion is that I am supposed to give and give, either of myself, my time, or my money, past the point where I believe is right. I may be robbing myself or others by doing this. It is not something I agree with.

We are taught to be selfless and self-sacrificing in many areas, which is really another form of codependence and causes a great deal more pain than good. And there is nothing spiritually fit about giving of myself and my resources past the point where I can afford to. I am going to deprive myself and family or friends of my time and resources, developing all kinds of resentment and anger in the process.

There is NO ONE more angry than a righteous victim or a righteous self-sacrificing and self-effacing person.

We can only assess our character defects as being those things that stand in the way of my usefulness to God and my fellows. Sometimes, others believe they know what that means for us, but I have not been able to find agreement with this. No one knows my journey. So, it is IMPERATIVE that I be brutally and completely honest and transparent with ME. I have learned that when I am willing to open that door and stand in that space, I get to have great pain in doing what does not serve any longer. Oh!

Published by: Kelly

I am a therapist and counselor with long-term recovery from addictions and personal trauma. My writing reflects these experiences and the road I have traveled in 12-Step recovery settings, along with the work I have done for over 30 years in the field. My love of dolphins includes the stories of them being healers in places all over the world. I long to offer every broken spirit and body the experience of a healing hug. May my words and stories inform, uplift and delight your spirit and soothe your weary heart.

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