31-Day Spiritual Guide: Days 19/20 – Optimism and Selflessness

Since I missed getting to this yesterday because of lingering schoolwork that I can’t seem to power through, I am combining yesterday and today’s topics. Let’s start with optimism. As you can probably tell from my opening statement, I am not incredibly optimistic about my schoolwork at the moment. Of all the classes I have had, the one I am in now has me more baffled than anything else in my life. It is frustrating and fills me with a good dose of anxiety. I am used to catching on to things rather quickly and what I am dealing with is something I just can’t seem to get a grasp on. I have learned in recovery, however, not to live in all that negativity. If I step back and look at things and I am honest with myself, this is not the first time I have gotten frustrated/anxious with schoolwork and it likely won’t be the last. But it’s where I am today and, in true alcoholic fashion, I am making it way more of a big deal than it really has to be. I have made through every other time and I believe I will make it through again. So, I see optimism as my guide through the BS that my brilliant brain conjures up. Optimism is the belief that even though I can’t see it right this minute, everything will work out exactly how it is supposed to (not necessarily the way I want it to).

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The next topic is selflessness. I would be lying if I said this came easy to me. I spent the vast majority of my life thinking primarily about me. In fact, I was almost all I ever thought about. I, I, I, me, me, me. What an exhausting existence! While self-care is a valuable tool, I think it is important for me to make the distinction between taking care of myself and being selfish. For example, if I need a minute alone or if I feel I need to get to a meeting, it is okay for me to go. In those instances it is not a bad thing for me to take care of my mental, spiritual, emotional, or even physical health, and I do not have to feel guilty about that. However, I am guilty of sometimes being selfish and self-centered even today. I noticed this past weekend how focused on me and my “issues” I was that I spaced on a moment my wife should have been able to rely on me to be there for her. It wasn’t intentional but that doesn’t make it okay. I am grateful today that I have some awareness and that gives me the ability to continue growing spiritually. My mantra over the next few days is going to be “what can I do for someone else?” Hopefully, I notice opportunities to practice selflessness and capitalize on them. Thanks for reading, good night!

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