The Recovery Group Writers Series






Dear TRG Members,


'When the master artist, Michealangelo Buonarotti was asked how he created the David out of the massive block of marble, he replied with a statement only a genius could make: ďI simply chipped away everything that wasnít David.Ē '

       ~ Author Unknown


What would happen if we chipped away everything about us that wasn't really applicable to us?  What if some incorrect information over the years has been stored in our psyches?  What if we weren't really who we think we are?


Step Four asks us to make a "searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves."  In Step Five, we are asked to admit to "God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs."  In Steps Six and Seven, we ask God to remove all our character defects and shortcomings.  Suppose when we were little boys and girls (without realizing it) we were doing a type of Step Four but didn't know for sure if the little recorder in our brain was receiving the truth about ourselves or if our experiences were being distorted in some way.  Over the decades, we have absorbed thousands of images relating to us, our bodies, our personality, our personal qualities, etc.  Many of them are truthful images, some are positive, some are negative ... and some are outright lies we internalize about ourselves. 


Although the article below is not OA sanctioned, we hope it will assist you in your recovery program as you work the Steps with your sponsor and begin peeling the onion.





Today I will not waste your time or mine. I will simply get to the point. I am in one of those moods -- so watch out!  Hold on to your "status quo" if you treasure it, because I am going to say everything I can to shatter it.


I am sure that you can feel the truth of this down deep in your bones. It is time we had a serious talk. No, I am not kidding about this one. I want your full attention. Something has been going on in your life for a long time and it is time for a change, a significant change. You know it, and I know it -- so letís talk.


I know you have spent much of your life in the thrall of what I call the 10,000 lies -- all those negative childhood experiences that you used to decide (in stone) who you are and what you are worth. It is true about you and it was true about me. I said "was" about me, and I want the "is" about you to change to a "was." Did that make sense?


I want you to learn how to break through the veil of the 10,000 lies and finally see who you really are and what you really have to offer this world, and then I want you to get on with the business of sharing it. That is clear, right?


It is a universal tragedy that most people live out their lives unaware that they are far more wonderful and gifted than they imagine. They never truly question their basic idea of self, because they are so convinced that they really know who they are. I submit, my friend, that this may well apply to you, too. There is a high probability that you have not yet seen your own magnificence; if you had then your life would be rather different than it is right now. If you doubt my accuracy on this, then ask yourself these questions:


1. What experiences or information do I use to define my essential value, worth and abilities?


2. Do I see myself as a capable, lovable, gifted person who is enthusiastic about sharing my gifts with this world?


3. What if I have been wrong about who and what I think I am?


4. What if I am actually far more lovable and valuable and gifted than I have imagined?


5. How would this new awareness change my life?


Now, I will say this to you in all honesty. And if you blow me off by imagining that I donít really know what I am talking about, then you will have made a grave mistake.


You are far more valuable and gifted than you have imagined. You have been fooled by the 10,000 lies (your childhood wounds), and you have been making those lies the truth your whole life. It is time to stop and confront those lies and look behind the dark veil they have used to blind you.


You can make a meaningful start toward discovering the real and most wonderful you by spending some quality time answering the five questions I posed above. Question 1 may require some energetic innerwork, but it is crucial. We all need to identify the "lies" that have defined us before we can make real progress in the areas of self-love and self-esteem.


After you explore the five questions above you can also explore this last one:


What do other people tell you about your gifts?


Take the time to write down what other people say or have said about your value and the specific gifts you have. Make a list and see which ones seem true for you. Then see which ones make you uncomfortable. They may also be true but might be in conflict with your current self-image. I suggest that you give them and you another chance. You have nothing to lose except your old limited idea of yourself. You might gain a new and more hopeful sense of you.


Matthew Anderson