Endigar 735

From Courage to Change of January 09;

How often I look outside myself for approval! The project at work is successful, but my good feelings depend on having that success acknowledged. The meal I fix at home is not as tasty when no one compliments the cook. I resent the favors I do for my children when they neglect to thank me.

We all need an occasional pat on the back. But when the applause of others becomes the reason for my behavior and necessary for me to feel satisfied, then I have given them power over me. People may forget to notice the terrific things that I’ve done or may not be comfortable praising me. I don’t have to take ti personally. Self-pity and resentment are not my only options. If I can learn to evaluate my own actions and behavior and to value my own judgement, then the approval of others will be enjoyable, but no longer essential to my serenity.

Today’s Reminder

Just for today, I will appreciate myself. I will not look to others for approval; I will provide it for myself. I’ll allow myself to recognize that I am doing the best I can. Today my best is good enough.

“Your vision will become clear only when you can look into your own heart.” ~ Carl Jung





thinking of me

A great deal of my anxiety comes from trying to manage the perspectives others have of me. At the height of my co-dependent anguish, I withdraw into whatever protective image I can muster to become what I believe will make others emotionally domesticated in my presence. I have heard the phrase, “what others think of me is none of my business.” I have never been able to get in line with such dismissal of a potential threat. This childhood indoctrination caused me to lose any real concept of my own identity. I struggle to find an “acceptable self-expression.” I was terribly sensitive to any criticism. I would meet any sign of uncontrollable emotion with wrath or withdrawal. There was no middle ground.

Separating my true core from this icon of impossible diplomacy has taken a surgeon greater than myself. The Steps have been, in a sense, a dating session with me. I have to find safe places to lure myself into the open so that I and Me can know each other. Sometimes the desire for self-sabotage swells within. Yet I resist.  This is a very difficult process. I am hoping to establish centers of trust in Al-Anon, stronger than those I have sought but never gained in the recovery rooms. Right now, I am just working on stopping myself from running away. Just for today, I will work on a consistent presence among my fellow survivors.

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