I listened to a speaker tape on emotional sobriety the other night, and to put it simply, it was exactly what I needed to hear. The past couple of years have been full of ups and downs – the beginning was different. It was nice feeling accomplished getting through the day without getting loaded, and I felt like I was making tangible progress with every gain I made in my steps, with every amends I made, and with every move forward. Things started to change one I hit two years and I felt like I needed more. The speaker says, “In spiritual growth, the job is never done.” I heard this, and it struck a chord. Am I to expect not to reach a point of enlightenment and peace? Well, not really. The point is to constantly be growing, to be evolving, and to be okay with that.
He speaks about learning, growing, and changing, and the evolution of our behaviors and thoughts when we practice self-love and connection with each other and our spiritual selves. I cannot expect to be perfect all of the time, and I know this. Sometimes, I forget that I place unrealistic expectations on myself and others. I need to take a moment and really think about what my sense of self is based upon.
Am I letting others define me? Am I allowing my perception of myself when I do something wrong dictate my overall attitude and mindset? Am I prey to my own negative thoughts and feelings? Am I unable to see the good in myself, even when others try to point it out to me?
As much as I would like to say my sense of self is solely based upon a spiritual connection and a desire to be useful, that isn’t always the case. The more important question I can ask myself, though, is, “Am I willing to give myself a break and focus on growing?”
With practice comes learning, with learning comes growth, and with growth comes change. I want to remain open and teachable, I want to be student in this life and be able to approach things openly and with a sense of willingness that I may be able to get better with each experience. I want to practice to the point where I can sustain changed behavior and practice loving myself not only through my thoughts, but through my behaviors as well. I want to connect with those around me and learn from what they have to share, and maybe contribute to their growth as well.
While I cannot expect myself to be perfect along this journey, I can remain grateful for what I have learned thus far and that I have made it to where I am today. My sense of self is fragile. I am still learning who I am and what makes me who I am. I do know that I want to be a good person, and I think I am well on my way to feeling that truth as my reality.
To listen to Tom B. speak on Emotional Sobriety, click the link below: