Letting go is when I no longer care what others think of me. I no longer need the approval of my family. I no longer need approval of who I am, who I’m with, what I believe, what I’m thinking, what I do for work, etc. And I no longer need to preach to others because I am okay with myself.
When we need to prove or preach something to others, the sad and rather unattractive truth is that we don’t entirely believe it ourselves. But if we are okay, inside and out, we don’t need to prove anything to anyone. We don’t need approval, validation, credit or recognition.
The day I let go was the day I stopped caring what other people thought about my life and what I was doing. It was the day I stopped needing for my friends in recovery to see all the stuff I was doing to help others. I didn’t need to show off, or need a pat on the back, or need smoke to be blown up my ass. And this is true peace – when you no longer need something outside of yourself to be okay.
Letting go is also forgiveness. That’s why the process of writing a thorough inventory can truly save an addict’s life. Clearly understanding our resentments has the power to fix an addict for good. If we can successfully dissolve our anger and resentment then we can forgive, and when we can forgive, we are free. There is no more need to hurt self or others. That is peace. Ridding ourselves of resentment is crucial to the process of restoring ourselves to sanity. And sanity, of course, means no more addiction. Sanity means life. Enjoy it.
Finally, it is important to understand that letting go is a process. We don’t just read it in a supermarket self-help book and wala, we’ve let go and our life magically gets better. Letting go is the result of hard work. As we continue to take Steps year after year, we step back one day to realize that we have let go. We are completely okay with the way things are. We are okay with life. We are free inside. We have recovered.
God, help me become willing to take actions that help me to let go…