I am taking full responsibility for myself and I am making a commitment to my own health and healing.
“Now that we have learned that we have to take care of ourselves and our recovery that we begin to look at the way we think and feel. Even though we don’t want to blame ourselves for having been depressed most of our lives, we know now that we are responsible for finding a way out of this depression. We can’t blame it on our genes, hormones or a chemical imbalance.
CLARIFICATION OF THOUGHT
I am aware for the first time since I have been working my program that my thinking is cyclical in that my negative thoughts constantly keep going around and around in circles. I have found that I need to stop the negative self-destructive thinking that has dogged me most of my life. I am able to break the cycle of hurt and my own self-inflicted pain and come to my senses. I do have some good things going for me and I plan to use these good character traits as building blocks for a future filled with hope.
I am learning to take good care of myself. I am more interested in my own self-care than I am of what others around me want or need. I am not being selfish as much as I am being concerned about my own growth and development. In the Third Step we declare that “we made a decision to turn our wills and our minds over to the care of God as we understand God. To be in the care of someone means that they are concerned about us and are burdened with a concern for us.
“Restore our fortunes, O God, like the torrents in the southern desert that those that sow in tears shall reap rejoicing. Although they go forth weeping, carrying the seed to be sown, they shall come back rejoicing, carrying their sheaves. ” Psalm 126.
SOURCE: Higher Thoughts for down days: 365 daily thoughts and meditations for members of Twelve Step fellowships. Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.
“Today is all that we have. Don’t let dwelling on yesterday’s hurts and fears or about tomorrow, rob you of peace today. Contrary to what you might have thought — you are responsible for how you think and feel..”
Many of us in the program, no matter what our compulsion happens to be, prefer living in the past and/ or the next day. We have a difficult time living through each day–it’s too risky to have to feel the pain of the moment. But we know that the pain of the present needs to be felt if we are to reduce the lifelong misery which is ours unless we face the enemy and deal with it. It is a promise of the program that we hand over and let God deal with us in God’s time and in God’s own way. We know that God, with our assistance and work, our life can be straightened out. Like the old Russian saying. “Pray, but keep rowing to shore”
Now that we have learnt how to take care of ourselves and our recovery, we now believe that we are responsible for finding our way out of depression. We can blame our sadness on our genes, hormones or a chemical imbalance. All this finger pointing can’t prevent us from having to take full responsibility for finding and using that map which points the way out of the darkness of depression. Since we have been involved in the 12 Step program of recovery we continue to learn the “how” of working our way out of sadness in the context of the fellowship of the group.
The best way to live today is to be fully conscious of the present moment and create that strong desire to be part of it. Let’s not live in yesterday –the rent can kill you.
How often do I spend time in tomorrow and so miss the joy of today? I think one of the more serious occupations (aren’t they all serious?) of the depressed is just to sit and think, and think some more about how bad life is and what awful people they are. The self-bashing makes one’s ability to change even more difficult, as continued depressive ruminations promote a great sense of unworthiness and confusion. We feel that we have no control over what happens in our life. Actually we are not so sure that we should care. Everything seems hopeless. Living in yesterday is to pay some high price rent –and when you’re done paying the rent, you still have nothing to show for it.
I have to live in the here and now –I can’t run and hide in the unknown of tomorrow or disappear into the gloomy fog of yesterday.”
Where do you plan to live today?
Sources: Believing is seeing: 15 ways to leave the prison of depression. Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. Pages 37-39.
Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition. (2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.