We are going to have our toes stepped on in life. It is totally unavoidable. While we were active, this seemed to happen a lot to us. Very rarely would we immediately forgive someone for a perceived personal affront. Part of the reason this was the case is because we saw intent behind most actions. “You did it to me”‘ we exclaimed. We assumed that whatever had taken place was done on purpose. At a minimum, we gave people the silent treatment. We also often seethed in resentment. If we really felt the victim, we spent time planning our revenge for what you had done to us.
In sobriety these scenarios have largely changed. When things happen to us, we no longer immediately assume they were done on purpose. We accept that sometimes accidents occur. As a result we are quick to forgive others. Even when it appears that someone has truly treated us unfairly, and we find ourselves in resentment, we have tools that help us relieve those feelings. Sharing with our sponsor or at a meeting is especially helpful. We are also able to step back and examine what our role was in creating the issue. We certainly no longer waste time thinking about revenge. We have better things to do with our day.
Personal Reflection: Do thoughts of revenge eat up my day?
Addicts are not known for their patience. Like everyone else, they undergo the travails of daily living. However, their coping skills are highly underdeveloped. When confronted with the daily tests of life, they quickly turned to their drug of choice. This lack of patience manifests in many facets of their lives. They usually give up on any type of work except for the least challenging. Working at jobs with little challenge often leads to feelings of guilt and shame. They stay in unhealthy relationships because the people are usually less demanding of them. If their partner or friend begins too expect more of them, they move on.
In sobriety, we begin to move away from impatience. We no longer see time as our enemy. We come to learn that things of value often require an investment of time. To advance in a career, a lot of work has to be done over time. Quitting when we hit the first speed bump is not an option in sobriety. The same holds true in relationships. Building a healthy relationship takes work, commitment and patience. It certainly is not going to evolve without, stress, friction and differences. With patience however something wonderful can and will be created. Since our Higher Power created time, we might as well use it.
Personal Reflection: Do I still have issues with patience?