March 16, What is Emotional Sobriety?

Thought fort today:

A member shares about a transition into emotional growth:

“I made emotional demands on everyone I knew without realizing it.  At work, at home,  and at social gatherings, my happiness depended on their actions.

“I expected my kids to behave, my coworkers and employees to praise me, and everyone to be emotionally available to me.  How did I get this way?

“My sponsor told me I was emotionally insecure, and that self-centeredness was running my life into the ground,  putting me in danger of binge spending and debting.

“My attitude had to change or I would stay miserable.  I had to stop requiring others to behave the way I wanted, and just accept them as they were, but how?

“I was told that in order to be happy, I first needed to give happiness, and in order to live, I had to find a way to let others live their lives without my unnecessary interference.

“I could help others cultivate their own potential if they agreed to my help and I had time for that, but I couldn’t force it down their throats.  And my motive was always be one of love.

“Yikes!  That was not easy, but it was possible.  I began in small ways to let go, and to love, and this rippled out to others.

“This is emotional sobriety for me today: to ‘live and let live’, and to give of myself.  I had to grow up, and love others with the love that I so craved for myself.”

Have I decided to “Live And Let Live”?

Meditation for today:

We must always seek a better relationship with our Higher Power. Try to quiet your mind to commune with God. Try closing off your senses, and be replenished by the spirit!  It is an illusion to think you can truly control another. Try to also stop the flow of control away from others, and to yourself, where true control lies.

It is an illusion to think you can truly control another person.  Even if you could, the spirit in the other person would fight to be freed.  Such is the strength of the human spirit.

Love means taking time with others, to listen to their story, and understand who they are, where they have been, and where they are going.

 “Love is patient, love is kind…”

Affirmation for today:

I will address the things that need attention today in me, and let go of the faults I find in others.

Prayer for today:

I pray that my expectations are reduced, and my serenity is replenished.

Related Reading:

Inspiration for this post came in part from the essay on love titled “The Next Frontier: Emotional Sobriety”, by Bill W., a co-founder of Alcoholics Anonymous, which can be found in The Best of Bill:

The Best of Bill has five of Bill W.’s most powerful Grapevine articles, in which he shares his thoughts on faith, fear, honesty, humility, and love. This edition also includes “Why Alcoholics Anonymous Is Anonymous,” Bill’s Grapevine article from January 1955.

Another book to help understand the relationships with those closest to you, and to  improve effectiveness as a communicator is The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, by Stephen Covey:

The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People has captivated readers for 25 years because it is one of the most inspiring and impactful books ever written. It has transformed the lives of Presidents and CEOs, educators and parents— in short, millions of people of all ages and occupations.