“You become what you think about”

In this program of the 12 Steps, I am encouraged to take stock of myself – a kind of personal inventory.  Actually, it’s the fourth step:  “Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.”

And I did do the fourth step – examined all my resentments, my fears, and the hurts I have cause others in the process.

There’s another step that is a continuation of the fourth:  Step Ten.  “Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.”

I still take a personal inventory.  I do it on a daily basis.  Sometimes hourly.  I  try to remain conscious of what I’m thinking about throughout the day. This has made an impact on how I behave – what I do and what I say to others.

But there’s more to the program than just examining all the crud.

I also have learned to give thanks for the good stuff.  It’s a way of taking a personal inventory, but with more emphasis on the positive.  Like giving thanks for the good things in my life: A roof over my head; a car to drive; my good health; steady employment; a loving wife and family; faithful friends that I’ve made in recovery…

I’m learning that what I dwell on will eventually show up in my life.

Dwelling on what I don’t have doesn’t serve me well; it leaves me feeling like crap.  And if I feel like crap, my life turns into crap.  Crap has a way of increasing when I dwell on it.  It becomes my default setting, and I suffer as a result.

But I have a choice now.  In recovery, I can choose how my day will go.  Yes sir; I can decide what to think about – what to dwell on.  But I can only do this as long as I remain conscious of what I’m thinking about.

If I don’t remain conscious (take personal inventory) my default setting is to dwell on the negative.  It is sometimes hard work to stay positive, but it is next to impossible if I fail to do my personal inventory – continually.

When you take your inventory, don’t forget to give thanks for the good things in your life.  What we dwell on, after all, is what shows up in our lives.