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Continually Letting Go

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Working through Steps Four and Five with my sponsee allowed us to fully understand our flaws and defects of character. In this Step we spent a lot of time discussing how to best hand them over to our Higher Powers and, more importantly, not grab them right back again. That, for me, is the hard part - truly letting go and not trying to immediately pull back those character defects and resentments, not falling back into the same old ways of thinking that got me into so much trouble and pain in the past.

One of my biggest character defects, I have learned, is the tendency to play the victim, to wallow in self-pity, to act as though I am justified in any action because of the wrong the world has done to me in the past. For me, it is almost comforting to be the victim, the martyr, the put-upon as I can then tell myself that my mistakes and flaws are the fault of others. No need for self-examination or difficult introspection as it’s their fault not mine. Becoming aware of this was hard, and truly letting go of this mindset harder still, but it is one of the most important parts of my recovery.

With this knowledge in mind from my own first journey through the Steps, it was a powerful experience going through it again with my sponsee to help him understand and use the same process of self-discovery and realisation. Working together like this, we practised how to truly hand over our character flaws, defects and resentments. I don’t mind saying that though I may be longer in the Rooms, he is often a lot better at truly handing over these negative traits and thoughts than I am! I still work regularly to hand over my own character flaws to my Higher Power. When I find myself pulling them back and slipping into old ways of thinking and acting, I look to my sponsee, and many of my close friends in the Rooms, as an example of strength and serenity.

I am so grateful to all of them and to this wonderful Programme for keeping me sane and sober on a daily basis.

ROBBIE H, Northampton