When I was studying to become a clinical therapist back in 2006, I had to take a substance abuse course and attend AA and/or NA for the duration of the class. At the time, I was no where near the level of spirituality that I have embraced today, and a big portion of the class focused on this element as a part of recovery.
As a matter of fact, I was desperately fleeing “religion”, didn’t really understand the difference between religion and spirituality, and was so uncomfortable at these meetings because I was not an alcoholic or substance abuser.
Yes, I was the ultimate “judgy” person, and further worried that others would think I was an addict. Ironic considering I was supposed to be learning how to empower and help people.
But now, I honor and respect the journey of those who struggle with addiction. (And in reality, we all have a bit of addictive tendencies.) I see great strength and courage in those that have done the work and come out on the other side. I finally get it.
I get that there is freedom in releasing things to a higher power. There is freedom in understanding that I am not really in control (even though I would like to pretend to be). There is freedom in being honest with myself, speaking my truth, making amends to past wrongdoings, and forgiving myself and others. It is within this freedom that my personal power exists.
So here are my most favorite 12 Step lessons that I believe EVERYONE should embrace.
1. Recognize that you aren’t in control of the big picture.
Yes, I know, you think you are. But there is this saying for a reason: “You make a plan, and God / the Universe laughs!”
As much as we try to plan for our future, to make it in our favor, it doesn’t pan out that way. And that is because it is not our job to know the when or how. It is just our job to set intentions for today and how we want to be in the future, make honest and sincere efforts to move in that direction, and then release the rest to the Divine.
2. Take a moral inventory of yourself.
Are you really living by the values and integrity that you envision for yourself? When I was sitting in AA and judging all the people there, I certainly was not. I was far, far removed from the person I said I wanted to be.
3. Make amends to people you have harmed (including yourself).
Forgiveness is hard. Admitting you were wrong can be hard. But when you get to a place where you are able to release shame and guilt, and can embrace love instead, it will change your relationships, your life, for the better.
4. Use prayer and meditation to connect with your soul self and to your higher power.
This is the core of my work with my clients. This is where confidence lives.
When you are spinning in circles, grasping at finding your purpose and power in external entities, you are setting yourself up to fail. It happens in our business. We take course after course: marketing, sales, branding, etc., hoping to find our purpose.
In our personal lives, we look for validation from others and hold ourselves back out of fear of failure and judgement. We listen to our ego mind over our authentic voice. The reality is, until you can get to a place where you are listening to YOURSELF, you won’t be in alignment with what you want, and the Universe won't deliver.
The Serenity prayer is a great way to release worry and fear that comes with trying to control. Try it for a week. See how you feel.
God/Universe (whomever), grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.
If you are ready to step into living in alignment with your authentic self, contact me so we can chat! I have 3 spots available in my 60 Day Journey Program (for those looking to re-claim their personal power, connect with their authentic self, and change their business and/or personal life) as well as slots for a few Soul Discovery Session clients (for those who want a shorter time frame and have a more specific goal).
Meanwhile, join the community! Head over to the Embodied by Confidence Facebook group for inspiration, fun things like Oracle card readings, and tips on how to reconnect with your soul voice.