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I have recovered from the disease of Alcoholism. I believe there is only one person really,.. everybody. And that peace of mind is everything. -So treat your neighbor as you would treat yourself, because your neighbor IS yourself. I think most of recovery is what I would call common sense, but that learning to be ordinary is a true gift very few people acquire. My ambition is to accept everything unflinchingly, with compassion, and therefore be intrinsically comfortable in my own skin, no matter what. I am comfortable being uncomfortable and am willing to go to any lengths to improve my life. I believe the Big Book was divinely inspired, and is extraordinarily powerful. Unfortunately AA's best kept secret a lot of the time. (In my opinion). I just try to do what works, no matter what it is.

Friday, April 13, 2007

DO NOT BE DISCOURAGED. The moment of certainty NEVER arrives

When I get a new 'step one moment,' it can feel very overwhelming. there is SO much work to do! Makes you want to hide under the duvet!

DO NOT BE DISCOURAGED.

If you are feeling a little overwhelmed by the realization of the work you need to do, I think that its very promising that you are feeling this way because it tells me you have a much more realistic assessment of the work that is required of us to get well. This is something I see people go through when they first start to get well, and later after step 9 when the 'scales fall from their eyes' and they are restored to sanity. I call them 'step one moments'.

Its a bit like "Oh my god, there is just SO much that I need to work on, I don't know where to start, and I have little or no confidence in the things my head is telling me anymore, and the way I am interpreting the world, because I've SEEN though some of the delusions it has been telling me so far"
Basically its a very uncertain and vulnerable mindset. Takes a bit of getting used to! But it is EXTREMELY teachable. This mindset is the hallmark of new and very exciting growth. This is the 'spirit' of step one. I have experienced it MANY times in sobriety. Sometimes I 'coast', which feels more comfortable for sure, but I just am not learning nearly HALF as much when I am in 'coast' gear.

The people I worry about are the arrogant ones who think they will have the whole thing 'sewn up' at some point and that they will end up with the answers to everything, and uncertainty will be a thing of the past.
Not so!

Uncertainty is actually very promising. I think. I love the U2 Zooropa lyrics when I am outside my comfort zone exploring uncharted territories.
It reassures me and helps me see a constancy amid the ever changing and frequently unknown landscapes.

The bottom line is that you do not need to impress anyone, so stop worrying If you think you are a bit ! Crap because you don't know the answer to something or you haven't figured a way to dig yourself out of a particular hole yet.
I have yet to reach a point where I feel secure in the knowledge I have gained. The more you know, the more you see how much ELSE there is to be understood. So the moment of certainty NEVER arrives. Not for ANY of us!

Getting used to uncertainty instead of arrogantly 'taking a position' takes a bit of work, and never really gets to feel 'comfortable'. But who said reality was supposed to be 'comfortable'? Reality just doesn't exist in the comfort zone. Its MUCH more challenging than that. But there are LOTS of wonderful moments along the way, where bits of the jigsaw fall into place and we experience the love and fellowship of the people we meet on the way. So its not that bad!

Basically reality is a vulnerable place. Delusion does not challenge us. It simply reinforces what we wanted to hear anyway. Usually some sort of ego massaging bullshit.

Vulnerable is VERY healthy. It is the OPPOSITE of arrogance. But please, do not be vulnerable in abusive or toxic situations. Choose to express your vulnerability in places where you will be supported, as opposed to undermined.

2 comments:

Syd said...

Thanks for your writing about certainty. I know that nothing is certain except death and taxes. I over think things way too much. Whenever I think too much about emotions and behavior, I end up in trouble. You always have a lot of good thoughts.

Noor Azman Othman GBE said...

Hello my Irish Friend of Bill. It's nice to be online again. Missed a lot of your posts. I'm gonna stay here for awhile to do a little bit of reading...