Al-Anon says; "Figuring it out, is not an Al-Anon slogan." However, doing nothing is not an Al-Anon slogan either. In Al-Anon we can confuse "turning it over to our HP" or "letting go" or "Live and Let Live" with "just sit there."
But this is not the case. You and I have to do the leg work. In our disease - and battling alcoholism - we become caught up in the fight which gives the alcoholism more power. To me it was like fighting the devil. It sounds weird, but in the middle of this craziness I became - well - friggin' crazy.
I thought about the disease and the craziness in my house and I cannot ever explain to anyone just how insane it was. I remembered this morning the insanity of worry, dread, hurt, aloneness, and suppressed anger.
When I started going to meetings and seeking help, I tried detaching. I in effect, tried to do nothing.
I have this thing now, where I am not working but perhaps 50% of what I used to work, because I have tried to "do nothing" more often. In fact, in many cases I do nothing more than I take action. It's almost like I am paralyzed. This is not necessarily a bad thing. Because I was usually doing something in the NOW - for something in the future. I therefore was not enjoying the NOW.
Now, I need to do more for the future. In fact I just built this PowerPoint presentation for a meeting next week. I had a few good ideas and I needed to capture them. I started to feel this rush that I need to obsess with doing more for the future. It is an old behavior that I am not sure I am ready to engage with again.
However, I know I need to take action on many things. I was never a procrastinator, but now I feel in some way I am procrastinating more. I feel lethargic more often than I used to. I feel too detached in some ways.
So here is a list of affirmations to help me focus on what to take action on, and what I should just leave alone. I hope this helps you.
- I act rather than not act on the things I know I have to do
- I write down what I need to do and then I review the list and I prioritize the list based upon: What is important to do right now. What is urgent but not important; What can be delegated or can wait until tomorrow. (Actually I have a much more defined system but this is enough for you right now)
- I work on only the important items right away.
- I review my list mid-day and at the end of the day to see progress and feel good about what was done.
- I focus all my energies on the task before me and waste no time thinking about the outcome. (this one was very new and foreign to me! I always thought about the outcome)
- When I focus on the task, I am achieve gratifying results.
- I know often spectacular results come only after I have pushed myself beyond where I thought I could go.
- I know like the marathon runner gets a "Second wind," I may find success is simply a matter of a little extra try.
- I know fear of failure is usually out of defensiveness, since we don't want people to laugh at us.
- I know I may avoid embarrassment by refusing to put myself into situations where failure might be a possible outcome.
- By depriving myself of a chance to fail, I deprive myself of a chance to succeed. I end up risking and doing nothing rather than risk anything at all.
- I know this puts me in perpetual limbo.
- I can gain valuable perspective on myself if I control my defensiveness.
- I know this means I make a habit of getting into uncomfortable situations and feelings and refuse to blame others for these.
- I know I am not the project, I am not a failure if the project fails.
- I always strive to do, and enjoy the doing, by staying focused on the action, like a mountain climber stays focused on each step he takes.
The next post will be about my favorite; "comparison."