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Motivational Meditation Monday: Keep Calm and Take Responsibility

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Keep-Calm-and-Take-Responsibility“Blame is just a lazy person’s way of making sense of chaos.” – Douglas Coupland

Often times in active addiction we found ourselves blaming others for our unhappiness, our terrible situations, and sometimes even our addiction problem.  We rarely took responsibility for our actions and rarely felt that any of it was our fault. We continued on this path until it destroyed us and we saw that our behaviors not only caused us harm, but others as well.

Taking Responsibility

“My actions can’t possibly affect others, right? I mean I am not that powerful. “

“What I say or do can only affect me. If it affects you, well, that’s because you are probably co-dependent and allowed me to affect you.”

I have heard a variation of those statements in the rooms for many years and it couldn’t be more false. What we do does have the power to affect someone else’s life if we are dedicated enough to continue to cause destruction. Many people carry these character defects from active addiction into sobriety and until it causes enough pain might not even know they are doing it. People may start to walk away or distance themselves from you and you may not even know why. You continue to blame others without taking a look at why they are walking. You forget to look at your part and it might not even bother you until you realize it’s happening over and over again.

If just one person walks away, it may be them. If more people start to walk away or have issues with you, it might be something you are doing. This was the great advice that a few sober supports gave me and they were correct. Sometimes people walked away because I unknowingly pushed them away through gossip and destructive behaviors. Other times they walked away because they themselves weren’t so good. Either way, I had my part. I either pushed good people away or hung out with bad people.  I can’t blame anyone else for the company I do or do not keep. That rests on me.

Understanding Our Part

If you are gossiping about someone else, causing them harm by the words or actions you use, feeling justified in your anger or resentment, chances are you are not taking responsibility for your actions.

Many people think resentment and anger just hurts them, but did you know that your resentment and anger can actually seep out into your daily actions and words with others? You may not even notice that you are setting the stage to hurt others because you are so wrapped up into your own feelings and beliefs. This kind of behavior can be destructive and can ultimately make life in sobriety just as unmanageable as it was in addiction.

What I have learned?

When I trust my Higher Power and don’t take things so personally, I tend to live a very peaceful life and not hurt others. I also don’t surround myself with people who do not care about me or my best interests.  The false belief that what I saw or think just hurts me has to be eliminated, because my thoughts can turn into action and will affect those around me. Today, I take responsibility for my thoughts and actions and pray that I may continue to be a good person so that I do not cause harm to myself or others.

Written By: Watershed Ashling

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