Connection to Others Pages 37-38 Some days it seems really easy to identify with others, to feel welcomed and welcoming in a meeting. At other times, all we hear are things that set us apart from the group. When we start noticing the differences more than appreciating our similarities, it's usually a red flag indicating discomfort with ourselves. When we focus on the personalities of others, we may gossip, bicker, and contribute to disunity. When we focus on own personality, we quickly become self-centered and self-obsessed. When we focus on living the will of our Higher Power and carrying the message, our identities grow and flourish. The Tenth Step offers us ample opportunity to tend to that development, nurturing the growth we want to encourage and pruning back the wayward branches before they grow out of control. When we attend meetings regularly, people get to know us and see us over time. When a fellow member can point out to us, "You know, you always get depressed path this time of year," we can take action to address a pattern we could not see ourselves. When someone we don't know that well points out our generosity or loving kindness, we learn that people see goodness in us that perhaps we don't see in ourselves. Our fellows reflect back to ourselves and show us how we have changed. Practicing compassion helps us to stop comparing ourselves to others. We start seeing the deep connections and similarities between us. Our traditions teach us that we are all equal. This doesn't mean we are the same; our differences are striking and sometimes very entertaining. Many of us have shared that part of what made us feel comfortable in our earliest meetings is that there are so many different kinds of people in a single meeting, sharing and appearing friendly with one another. This can contrast sharply with what we have experienced before, in or out of active addiction.

After not taking my first recovery seriously. A relapse took everything and almost everyone from me. I am now actively participating in a rigorous and honest life, to stay clean. Just for today I can do it, and I tell myself that daily. If you need to talk to someone I am here as I know there will be people in the program for me if I need them. Not asking for help in this disease is the worse thing we can do while trying to recover. I am here to help in any way I am able. No judgement only understanding, peace, hope, and strength.

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