8-27-17 Need

Need

As I have found out — and continue to realize — my problem is not an addiction, other people or the world; it is that I don’t particularly like myself. I am afraid. When I am afraid, I act from fear and try to get something, or get rid of something, according to my selfish desires. I need this, I need to avoid that. This always brings suffering.
What we NEED is to care about ourselves, and then we can care about others in a healthy way. It’s easy-All you need is love. The Beatles

We need to begin with a foundation of simply LIKING ourselves. As simple as this sounds, it may be more difficult than it seems.
There are many reasons we dislike ourselves. It may go back to our childhood, or how we felt unique and different growing up, or how we compare ourselves to social standards and others and always seem to come out wanting.
It may be that we need outside help in addressing some difficulties, and we need to find the right person to help us.

If I only hear good words and do not act upon them, I cause suffering.
Can I have the discipline to practice my spiritual life, to bring peace, everyday?
Can I be gentle and strong enough to not hold grudges? To look for what is good, not wrong? When I am looking for what is wrong, I will come from a place of judgement and negativity.
If I am not promoting peace — why not? Too busy being selfish or feeling sorry for myself? Today I have a choice.
Can I need to listen to someone, want to hear and know who they are? And not need to one-up them or interrupt so I can get my story in?
A person that is confident enough to listen, to ask questions and learn, and share their experience without dominating, is a pleasure indeed. They only seem to need to be kind and involved, not afraid or overbearing.

Do not accept criticism from yourself. As the Buddha said, “You, yourself, as much as anyone in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.”
Use any critical thought to find how you can progress through and beyond self-doubt. You are not deficient in any manner — you are human.

When we come from a place of accepting ourselves just as we are, we do not promote our negative fearful mindset, we begin to recognize the power of caring. We are able to be respectful of others without being unduly swayed by them. We are able to speak up honestly and kindly without worrying about negative responses, We can leave the negativity for others to dwell in, we do not take it on. We are not afraid. We have the self-respect to be who we are; we trust ourselves. Through liking and respecting ourselves we feel energized, and do not need to demean ourselves. We do not cater to others for acceptance because we have accepted ourselves, and that is what we have always needed. We are no longer VICTIMS, we no longer need to prove or force anything. We feel a responsibility to act in a manner that enriches and celebrates the world, because we are enriched and touched deeply by the world. We feel healthy and propagate healthiness.

We sometimes hear people say, — “Well, that’s just the way I think because I am an addict or
alcoholic”. Recognizing our negative thought patterns is a first good step, but if we don’t take
action to change those patterns they become a limiting and self-fulfilling prophesy of
disrespecting ourselves.

Consider before, during and after every action whether it was abusive, or rooted in kind intent. This requires clarity of mind, wisdom, and concentration to discern negative intent, and effort to exercise restraint. Wise understanding, (compassion), lets us realize the losses we feel and that we share with others. Wise intention expresses our ever-growing resolve to respond to all life, (ourselves included), with kindness.
We must be willing to make the effort to move towards a more fearless and considered life. We have spent a lot of time building defenses and learning to hide behind justifications. It is time to step out, to brave the world honestly. We will find most of our fears are unfounded, only fabrications of fear of ourselves.

As we cultivate liking ourselves, the worldly and the spiritual begin to come together. The worldly does not seem so heavy, and the spiritual is not so unreachable. We begin to trust our
instincts and act on them. We step into the world with a sense of awe and appreciation.
When we do not feel the need for anything, other than to understand and to be kind, we no longer need.

Don’t ever criticize yourself. Don’t go around all day long thinking, ‘I’m unattractive, I’m slow, I’m not as smart as others, or I am better than others.’ If you don’t love yourself in the right way, you can’t love your neighbor. You can’t be as good as you are supposed to be.

To love yourself right now, just as you are, is to give yourself heaven. Don’t wait until you die. If you wait, you die now. If you love, you live now. Alan Cohen

It takes work, but the results are a long lasting sense of contentment and peace that you will have, that no one can take from you, and that you bring to the whole world.

We do not love ourselves in any meaningful manner unless our actions reflect love. Just liking ourselves may seem small, but great things arise — like yourself — out of small things that are honored and cared for — like yourself.
Out of that – It’s easy – All you need is love.

How do you fill your bucket? One drop at a time.
The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.
“The great arises out of small things that are honored and cared for.”
Heart Of Recovery web site — fcheartofrecovery.com