Today’s thought from Hazelden is:
A helpful tool in our recovery, especially in the behavior we call detachment, is learning to identify who owns what. Then we let each person own and possess his or her rightful property.
If another person has an addiction, a problem, a feeling, or a self-defeating behavior, that is their property, not ours. If someone is a martyr, immersed in negativity, controlling, or manipulative, that is their issue, not ours.
If someone has acted and experienced a particular consequence, both the behavior and the consequence belong to that person.
People’s lies, deceptions, tricks, manipulations, abusive behaviors, inappropriate behaviors, cheating behaviors, and tacky behaviors belong to them, too. Not us.
People’s hopes and dreams are their property. Their guilt belongs to them too. Their happiness or misery is also theirs. So are their beliefs and messages.
If some people don’t like themselves, that is their choice. Their choices are their property, not ours. What people choose to say and do is their business.
What is our property? Our property includes our behaviors, problems, feelings, happiness, misery, choices, and messages; our ability to love, care, and nurture; our thoughts, our denial, our hopes and dreams for ourselves. Whether we allow ourselves to be controlled, manipulated, deceived, or mistreated is our business.
In recovery, we learn an appropriate sense of ownership. If something isn’t ours, we don’t take it. If we take it, we learn to give it back. Let other people have their property, and learn to own and take good care of what’s ours.
Today, I will work at developing a clear sense of what belongs to me, and what doesn’t. If it’s not mine, I won’t keep it. I will deal with myself, my issues, and my responsibilities.
You are reading from the book:
The Language of Letting Go by Melody Beattie
The Language of Letting Go. Copyright 1990 by Hazelden Foundation. All rights reserved. Printed in the United States of America. No portion of this publication may be reproduced in any manner without the written permission of of Hazelden.