April 19

HONESTY MONTH: DAY 19: “The need to prove who you are will vanish once you know who you are.”― Danielle Pierre

I know I had to prove myself for so long. Not sure, but I think recovery has taken that away, for the most part. The other part is due to aging itself.

I sometimes find myself talking to people who have known me a short time about some of my old exploits. Not sure why, I guess so they know I used to be young and wild. I don’t know if that is to prove something to them (or maybe myself!) but it might be.

I do know who I am though. Pretty well. I don’t need to prove much to others, because I care so much less about their approval and all now.

I don’t know about anyone else, but my first inventory was so much less honest. It was NOT about becoming authentic or allowing anyone to really SEE me. I still wanted to do the minimum amount of work and receive the maximum amount of benefit. So I was still into story and looking good and blaming and had such a tremendous load of shame that I don’t know how I got through it. It was an interesting experience, to say the least.

Today I do them differently. I have had a lot more experience, so use all kinds of formats and various tools for inventory with myself and others. When I feel resentments cropping up, I do the old format from the BB with the list and the columns. Never fails to set me straight…every damned time! But there are other formats that help me with people who are into longer-term recovery.

It is fun to be creative with this process, in order to get more fully into the dynamics of the old stories and old ideas. There have been some really good ones and some that work well for me and not so great for others.

The point of all of them is to acquaint ourselves with the process of really digging into ourselves to see where we find trouble in relationships with others. This can happen in a variety of ways. But I believe there is nothing wrong with just this process of Step 4. In fact, it is the greatest tool ever for really seeing who I am and what I am up to.

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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