It is often said that as booze is to AA as overthinking is to Al-Anon. At one time I thought I could read other people’s minds despite the fact I was always wrong. I made myself think I could read you mind because if I was wrong about that I had absolutely no way to make myself feel safe. So on and on I believed I could protect myself that way. The bad part of that is if I was building my life around falsehood it became harder to recognize truth.
In program I found many true idea.One of the true things I discovered was that people liked me for one reason and for one reason alone. It was not wealth, good looks, intelligence or success or any other thing about me. People liked me if I made them feel good about themselves. That made me into a people pleaser. When I lived my life sucking up to people I might as well have put a sign on my forehead saying “Kick me please”. Being a people pleaser was me insulting my own dignity. It was not surprising that since I insulted myself other people felt free to insult me overtly or in a hidden way.
However, since I have been in program for years now remembering that people like me based on how I made them feel allowed me to be very attentive to the things I truly admired in people and to in all sincerity compliment them when it was appropriat.
In another area I had to learn that people respected me on one basis alone. They respected me if I respected myself. If I ignored my own needs people around me ignored my needs also. I found being good to you presupposes I am good at meeting my own needs. To my surprise it turns out that it is not pride that makes me good to myself but instead it is spiritual and emotional health
CC / BCC
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