• David Smeltz

The 12 Promises #9

Updated: May 21, 2019

Promise 9: Our whole attitude and outlook upon life will change.

To just not use is a blessing, however, to stay the course I needed an attitude adjustment. I didn't get clean and sober to live miserably. If that were the case then I might as well pick up in order to temporarily feel better. I believe that the majority of us attempting sobriety think that once we stop drinking or drugging then our problems will go away. We've all been told that drugs and alcohol are our problem. So, it would only make sense that if I remove drugs and alcohol from the equation that my problems would be solved. Unfortunately, or fortunately, the real problem is me! Unfortunately, because my ego tells me I couldn't possibly be the problem so why bother to look at myself? Fortunately, because I can do something about me by changing my attitude and outlook in conjunction with abstinence from drugs and alcohol. Dope and alcohol are only 10% of my problem. The remaining 90% of the problem is me! Add dope and drink onto defective and delusional thinking, mix well and voila! The most effective method to change my attitude in the past had been to ingest something mood or mind altering. By doing so, my whole attitude and outlook upon life would change immediately. The ability to instantly change the way I felt would become an easier and softer way to deal with my life. Have a miserable day at work? Have a drink and problems of the day melt away. Had an argument with someone? Have a shot and a beer and F**k them anyway! Alcohol and drugs worked on good days to make them appear even better. Got a raise at work? Let's celebrate! My birthday turns into my birthday month! Payday becomes play day and etc, etc....I can even remember being at an amusement park awaiting a ride on the highest and fastest coaster in the park saying to myself, "If I smoke this joint first the ride will be even more awesome!".

It's hard work to get sober and I never want to have to try to get sober again. In all honesty, I don't believe I would be able to. The embarrassment, self hate and knowledge of those I had let down would probably keep me out there until my ultimate demise. I prefer to stay in sobriety no matter what mood or feeling pops up. It wasn't until I got sober that I learned that I did not have to be happy ALL the time. Moods and feelings vacillate naturally. They ebb and they flow. I had to learn to adjust to my moods and feelings rather than to mask or disguise them. I had done such a good job of covering my feelings that once I got into treatment I didn't know how I really felt. I found that what I imagined to be anger was actually fear. Today, I find that I am no longer a victim of my fluctuating temperament. And I become a volunteer to misery only when I indulge in these transitional states of mind. My whole attitude and outlook upon life has changed as long as I continue to recognize that I am responsible for my attitude. My outlook upon life is in direct correlation with my attitudinal adjustments.

Grateful to see me for a change!

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