Six months ago I was absolutely insane. I thought I was able to manage my life and lost sight of my powerlessness over alcohol and other substances. I had been sober from March of 2011 until August of 2013. I did what I like to refer to as working the steps in reverse. The relapse of spirit and mind, before the substance is used.
Switching Addictions, More Common than You Think
When some people become sober they trade off their “drug of choice” for something that can seemingly be harmless. There’s shopping, sweets, sex, gambling, work, exercise, ect. All of these things, in moderation, are fine and many times normal activities. BUT when you use them to excess, you have a whole new addiction on your hands.
Meeting Makers Make It, or Do They?
In 12 step recovery you often hear the old saying, “Meeting Makers Make It.” Is this true? Well, to some extend it is, but it’s only half the story.
The Rest of the Story
When I was a kid my mother used to listen to Paul Harvey (Letter From God) on the radio on Sunday mornings. He would start out his program with these famous words, “Hello Americans, I’m Paul Harvey. You know what the news is — in a minute, you’re going to hear the rest of the story.” Well, that’s what I’m here to talk about… the rest of the story about the old adage “Meeting Makers Make It.”
EGO is a Four Letter Word
You hear lots of reasons why people relapse in recovery. Which one is the worst offender? Sometimes you hear it’s resentments or dishonesty. Other times it’s a relationship or not going to meetings. Sometimes you can get a little closer to the truth when you hear it’s selfishness. I’ve heard them all and I’ve used them all too. So which one is the worst? None, because they all steam from one evil, ugly thing. The ego. That little three letter word causes so much destruction and we aren’t even aware it’s calling the shots. But how can all those reasons for relapse above be caused by the ego? Let’s look at some examples:
My Ego Tells Me I’m ALL THAT!
Resentments- Why do we get resentments. Lots of reasons but let’s focus on just 3:
- Judgement: I think I’m better than you (ego) or worse than you (ego in reverse).
- Hypocrisy: I hold you to a higher standard than I do myself. Ie: “You lied to ME!!!” Umm… You never lied to anyone? “You stole from ME!!” Umm… You’ve never stole from anyone? My ego tells me I’m ALL THAT!
- Fear: I’M not going to get something I want. I’M going to lose something I have. Umm.. Isn’t everything on earth God’s and He’s just letting you use it anyway? My ego tells me that I have to run the world (which is pretty scary). You can’t manage your own life and expect your Higher Power to do it too.