This is another one of the promises. I don’t know about you but when I came into the program, I had a pretty bad attitude toward everything. I felt as if life should be handed to me on a silver platter because I was so wonderful. I felt entitled to everything and didn’t care one bit about others. It was all about me and what was in it for me.
This is the type of attitude most of us have when we first stop drinking. Our values are a mess. Most of us have lost all sense of morality. We need some serious help possibly divine intervention. Upon embarking upon our journey through the steps we are able to gain a new and sane attitude on life. The book says that we need to experience ego deflation at depth in order to stop drinking and gain a new life. This is accomplished by working and applying the steps in our lives.
We come to learn that we are not the center of attention. Others are important or more important than we are. Our egos assume their positive role in our lives, not overinflated or exaggerated. We become a worker among workers and do not fancy ourselves as the boss of all others. We become willing to perform tasks that we previously felt were beneath us.
Through the steps we are able to strip away all the objectionable things which we had added to our personality. We no longer go around in an angry way. We let others have the seat in the waiting room. We no longer have a sense of entitlement. The list could go on and on. In our drinking we added things such as anger, fear, resentment, lying, cheating and stealing to our personalities. You may say “Oh but I didn’t steal.” Well, you came into work late and left early so you were stealing time from your employer. You were staying in the bars drinking rather than going home and spending time with your family. This was stealing from the relationship you had with your spouse and children. Then when confronted you would lie about where you had been and what you had been doing. Or perhaps you felt that you were entitled to go out drinking to celebrate all the hard work you imagined you had been doing. Or you had been chastised at work and you felt the need to drink to sooth your damaged ego. These imagined needs became paramount to all others
By working and applying the steps in our lives we become useful members of society. This is something we may have never experienced before. If we have a family, we become of service to it instead of taking and taking the life out of it. We become helpful members of Alcoholics Anonymous being of service when asked to be. We also do whatever task is asked of us in the program. There is no task too lowly for us to do. We become good citizens. We vote in elections and allow others to have different views that we do. We respect the rights of others and try to obey the law. We carry the vision of God’s will into all parts of our lives. The program is meant to be lived. We do not pick and choose when to apply it. It becomes a working part of our mind. As a result we have a whole new outlook and attitude upon life in general.