If You Don’t Like Being A Doormat; Then Get Off The Floor

Cell phones have seeped into almost every aspect of our lives. As such, it’s almost impossible not to overhear conversations taking place wherever you go. On the bus, in an elevator, at the Laundromat, we are frequently bombarded with phone conversations. Though we might not intend to, we are almost forced to overhear the conversations of others. When we do so, we recognize that many of these conversations concern complaints that one individual has against another. When the conversation starts with, “I can’t believe what he or she did to me”, you have a pretty good idea in what direction the conversation is headed.
Our approach in the program is different. A program conversation usually starts with, “so after thinking about it, I really need to take a look at my part in what happened”. We don’t believe that we are victims in life. If things keep happening to us, on some level we are setting ourselves up. When we change our behavior; people around us change theirs as well. If they don’t, we can always find healthier people. Wouldn’t it be refreshing to hear someone on the phone taking personal responsibility for their actions?

Personal Reflection: Do I still feel I’m a victim?

Self Pity Is Your Worst Enemy #2

At first, it was difficult for us to synthesize what was being said to us by others in the program. When someone said to us, ” get off the pity pot”, we often responded in anger, hurt and confusion. “What do you mean get off the pity pot”, we exclaimed. If they had walked a mile in our shoes, they wouldn’t have spoken to us the way they did. If they had our spouse, our job, our friends, our children, our siblings, our problems, they would understand us a lot better.
As we progressed in the program, our understanding of self pity changed. We came to see that when we engaged in self pity, we were failing to take responsibility for our actions. We learned that it was a cop out to place the blame on others. The only way we could grow was through self examination and seeing our role in whatever challenges we were facing. Even when the other person was at fault, we had an opportunity to examine why their behavior pressed our buttons. We stopped making it all about them, and began to make it about us. Over time, self pity was replaced with personal responsibility.

Personal Reflection: Do I still fall into the trap of self pity?