How to Live One Day at a Time: Acceptance
Author: Harry Haroutunian, MD
In a previous piece I discussed Awareness, being conscious of what is happening around us and inside us.
In Twelve-Step recovery, awareness is noticing when our behavior is being driven by a character defect (such as dishonesty) rather than a spiritual principle (such as honesty). When we are aware of our behaviors and the motivations behind them (character defects or spiritual principles), we can make efforts to rectify a situation. We can also make a pretty accurate Tenth step inventory and ask our Higher Power to remove these character defects so we can start the day with a clean slate.
Acceptance in recovery is the opposite of “self-will run riot.” We accept people and situations as they are, not as we want them to be. We stop fighting what is and accept is as it is. We realize that what we’re fighting is a universal force. We can’t push against this force long. Eventually, like addiction, it overpowers us and lays us flat out. When we accept things as they are, we go in the same direction as the universal force. We “go with the flow.”
At the very moment we do that, the moment of acceptance, we’ve given our will over to our Higher Power so that it can create the best solution, not necessarily the solution we want or in the time frame we want, but the solution that is in the best interest for everyone, whether they see it that way or not. This is when events we might call miracles take place. Three important things to remember in this process are:
- One day at a time means starting each day with a clean slate.
- Recovery is a gift and requires that we live a balanced life.
- Cleaning our slate requires the Tenth Step Prayer, meditation, awareness, and acceptance.