From the BlogMeet Ron

Chuck D contributor

That’s what happens when you’re angry at people. You make them part of your life.
–Garrison Keillor
 
Our problems with anger and our problems in relationships go hand in hand. Some of us have held back our anger, which led to resentment of our loved ones. Some of us have indulged our anger and become abusive. Some of us have been so frightened of anger that we closed off the dialogue in our relationships when angry feelings came out.
 
Some of us have wasted our energy by focusing anger on people who weren’t really important to us. Do we truly want them to become so important? Yet, perhaps the important relationships got frozen because we weren’t open and respectful with our anger. It isn’t possible to be close to someone without being angry at times. We let our loved ones be part of our lives by feeling our anger when it is there and expressing it openly, directly, and respectfully to them – or by hearing them when they are angry. Then, with dialogue, we can let it go.
 
I will be aware of those people I am making important in my life and will grow in dealing with my anger.
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Editorial: On the 5th Step
AA Grapevine – March 1945  
Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
 
This is a tough step and takes courage to do. It is, however, a step that can be done if you make sufficient effort.
 
It is not new. The Catholic Church uses it in their confessional and the Psychiatrist uses it.
 
Drinking is caused by inner conflicts and the only way to get rid of these conflicts is to bring them out in the open and destroy them. Wrongs cause conflicts, hence the necessity of this step.
 
Take the first phrase, “Admitted to God.” How do you do this? First learn humility so that you can ask help in a humble manner. If you have difficulty in admitting the actuality of a supreme power, work on the premise that there might be one. Once you get your mind in tune with the infinite it is not difficult to realize that you have no secrets from God.
 
“Admitted to ourselves:” This can only be done when we are honest with ourselves. In this program it is folly to try to kid yourself. Be ruthless in your soul searching and come clean.
 
Great care should be taken in choosing “another human being.” It must be someone you can trust. Your lawyer, your doctor, your priest or minister, another A.A., or a friend; someone who will act as a sounding board and keep your confidence.
 
Once you take this step you will be astounded at the relief you feel. The burden of despair will be lifted from your back and you will be free.
 
It is essential for every A.A. to realize the importance of taking this 5th step. By so 
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Setting Our Own Course
 
We are powerless over other people’s expectations of us. We cannot control what others want, what they expect, or what they want us to do and be.
We can control how we respond to other people’s expectations.
During the course of any day, people may make demands on our time, talents, energy, money, and emotions. We do not have to say yes to every request. We do not have to feel guilty if we say no. And we do not have to allow the barrage of demands to control the course of our life.
We do not have to spend our life reacting to others and to the course they would prefer we took with our life.
We can set boundaries, firm limits on how far we shall go with others. We can trust and listen to ourselves. We can set goals and direction for our life. We can place value on ourselves.
We can own our power with people.
Buy some time. Think about what you want. Consider how responding to another’s needs will affect the course of your life. We live or own life by not letting other people, their expectations, and their demands control the course of our life. We can let them have their demands and expectations; we can allow them to have their feelings. We can own our power to choose the path that is right for us.
 
Today, God, help me own my power by detaching, and peacefully choosing the course of action that is right for me. Help me know I can detach from the expectations and wants of others. Help me stop pleasing other people and start pleasing myself.

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Take a side road
 
Adventures don’t begin until you get into the forest. That first step in an act of faith.
–Micky Hart
 
We were driving along highway 166 in central California on another road trip. The trip had been a long one, started on the spur of the moment, as they usually are, and now we were anxious to get back home. Then we– Andy, Chip, and I– all saw it: a small road leading up into the mountains behind an open gate. It wasn’t on the atlas. The road turned to dirt. Cows lounged on the path and we had to wait for them to move out of the way. The GPS (Global Positioning System) got lost. The path degraded. We hit a patch of black mud and the truck struggled for a moment. Chipster gunned the motor and we leapt ahead.
“Think we should turn around?” he asked.
“No, this road must go somewhere,” said Andy.
“Aaaah,” I said.
We came to a small lake in the middle of the path.
“You can make it,” said Andy, rolling up his window.
“Aaaah,” I said.
Chip switched into four-wheel drive and gunned the motor. Muddy water poured in through the open sunroof.
Much later– after we moved rocks out of the way, splashed through more puddles, saw stunning views from a high ridge-line, and drove far too close to the edge of the cliff– we came across an old man pushing a bicycle up the road.
We asked, “How much further is it to get out of here?”
“Well,” he replied, “how far in have you come?”
“We didn’t come in this way.”
A puzzled look crossed his face. “How did you get here then?”
“We drove over the ridge.”
He shook his head in disbelief and walked on.
Ten miles later we came to another gate. The cell phone started to work again.
The GPS decided that we were still on the planet after all.
Sometimes, we find the biggest adventures when we deviate from the map and drive through the gate into new territory just to see where it goes.

God, help me remember that I don’t have to follow the map all the time. Give me the spirit of adventure. Bring a little woohoo into my life.
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