One of the best things about
the 12 Steps is they give us the way to heal. The 10th Step even
gives us a way to heal almost instantly.
Here's what I mean:
The other day I got my
feelings hurt by a co-worker.
The short form is that I
thought she'd agreed we'd spend some time together exchanging work-related
ideas when we went on break. But she turned her attention to someone else
and all my "I'm being abandoned, left out" feelings surfaced
with a vengeance.
My first, second and
third thoughts were all about how wrong she was. I have, however, been
around long enough to recognize that my internal reaction was way
out of line.
So I walked outside, took
a couple of deep breaths and asked myself and my Higher Power what was
really going on with me.
It took some gentle
mental discipline to turn the focus from "what she'd done" to my
own feelings. It went something like this:
ok, why am I feeling
so hurt? Yeah, I know, she did hit a hot button, but I'm the one who is
reacting, what am I really reacting too? Yeah, I've got some financial
insecurity running right now which tends to magnify everything, but
there's more... yes, I'm still recovering from strep throat, but there's
something else. Ok, let's look at what you think she did... she didn't
keep an implied agreement... no, what's really true is I think she didn't
keep an implied agreement... so why does that hurt, what does that bring
up about me?
Bingo! When I thought
about not keeping implied agreements, I felt a stab of guilt... I've got
some agreements out there I haven't kept! What I was really reacting to
was my own behavior with other people!
My angst cleared up and I
was able to be present on the job again. I also know exactly what I have
to do and that's make amends and change my own behavior.
With out the practice of
the 10th Step I'd probably have been out of sorts all day, and I doubt I'd
ever come to the truth of the situation. Program is truly a blessing.