Don't take everything personally.
Accepting Our Feelings
Why do we struggle so with our feelings? Why do we work so hard to deny our emotions, especially concerning other people? They are only feelings!
In the course of a day, we may deny we feel frustrated in reaction to someone who is selling us a service.
We may deny that we feel frustrated, angry, or hurt in reaction to a friend.
We may deny feelings of fear, or anger, toward our children.
We may deny a whole range of feelings toward our spouse or the person with whom we're in a love relationship.
We may deny feelings provoked by people we work for, or by people who work for us.
Sometimes the feelings are a direct reaction to others. Sometimes people trigger something deeper - an old sadness or frustration.
Regardless of the source of our feelings, they are still our feelings. We own them. And acceptance is often all that is necessary to make them go away.
We don't have to let our feelings control our behavior. We don't have to act on each feeling that passes through us. We do not need to indulge in inappropriate behavior.
It does help to talk about our feelings with someone we trust. Sometimes we need to bring our feelings to the person who is triggering them. That can breed intimacy and closeness. But the most important person we need to tell is ourselves. If we allow our feelings to pass through us, accept them, and release them, we shall know what to do next.
Today, I will remember that feelings are an important part of my life. I will be open to my feelings in family life, in friendships, in love, and at work. I will feel my feelings without judging myself.
When I first came into the program the slogan, “One Day at a Time,” sounded so silly. I spent my life planning for the next week, month, summer, semester, soccer season, or holiday-so focusing on today was quite an adjustment.
Living one day at a time made each day more meaningful. I had a reputation for worrying so far into the future that I never had time for the present. Now, instead of rushing through my days, I notice where I am and what is happening. Al-Anon teaches me that most of the things I spent endless hours worrying about, never happened. The things that did occur in my life were usually quite a surprise.
Every day I reassure myself that God has a plan for me. I believe God has carefully tailored this plan to meet my needs and His desires. I do my best to live one day at a time and try not to become diverted.
Life is not overwhelming when I live one day at a time. When I look too far down the road, I am unable to discern what goals I have reached and what character defects I have been able to lessen.
Last night I was speaking to my son. He was sharing some of his dilemmas and I said, “What you need is---“ I stopped, then continued, “for your mother to support you and not give advice.” A year ago I would have mapped out his solution, not allowing him to grow at his pace.
Today is good. That means I can love it, hug it, embrace it, enjoy it, hate it, ignore it, or just plain tune it out. If today is terrific, I can remember it. If it is horrible, I know that tomorrow I will have another opportunity.
By Anonymous August, 2000
Reprinted with permission of The Forum
Al-Anon Family Groups Incorporated, Virginia Beach, VA
Today's Hope is an Al-Anon themed site and is not affiliated with Al-Anon's World Service Office. The daily sharings contain a reading from Al-Anon's Conference Approved publication The Forum, an inspirational quote/saying and a recovery based reading/meditation. The intent of Today's Hope is to share experience, strength and hope. Please take what you like and leave the rest.