Surrendering the ego is never easy, but it can be one of the best things you can do in recovery. Sometimes it helps to admit that you don’t have all the answers and find some measure of peace in that. So what if you don’t have it all figured out, you can actually make more progress in recovery if you are not always right. By listening to others (and yourself) better, you can learn how to embrace being wrong for all the right reasons.
Compulsion to Be Right
Society seems to teach that being wrong is horrible, being right is the only way. This constricts our lives and relationships, and certainly leads to addictive behavior for some people. The willingness and flexibility to be wrong is at the heart of mindfulness practices, but is just good insight for living your best life. Wisdom is not imagined, it is created through practical experience. The insistence on being right creates a burden and the urgency to prove others wrong is the source of suffering worldwide but means many people are suffering out there in the world.
Fun to Be Right
Nobody wants to be wrong (even) if they have a choice. Unlike many delights including chocolate, surfing a wave, or falling in love, it does not kick in our endorphins and make us feel awesome. The thrill of being right means something different, like a universal and almost undiscriminating process that goes through the brain and creates a feeling of orderliness in your world. It seems like when you’re right, the world is awesome. Most people go through life assuming they are right, maybe all the time. But that is not a good way to live, or keep relationships healthy and strong.
Relish the Wrong Way
In many aspects of life, there is no right or wrong way to go. It is simply about personal choices and decisions. In metaphysics or astronomy and calculus, perhaps there is only one way to get an answer that is going to solve a problem. However, if we always relish being right and regard this as our natural state of being, we will feel horrible about being wrong. The capacity to err is human and should be regarded with high esteem because it:
- Builds empathy for others
- Creates personal sympathy for not having all the answers
- Supports an optimistic worldview that things can (and will) get better
- Encourages imagination about a new way to explore choices
- Courageous thinkers, leaders, and doers in the world make mistakes and learn from them rather than sulk and refuse to move forward after failure
- Builds resilience for the journey of life
Recovery is a microcosm of life itself, and even the universe at large. There are ways in which people will shame you for being wrong or making wrong choices but there is no wrong way to do recovery, only choices. By making the choice to stay on the path and keep getting up, even when you fall, you are choosing joy over discouragement. That is what will help you keep moving forward with a positive outlook and determination to succeed, no matter what challenges come your way.
Sound Recovery helps you build those muscles to find joy again after addiction. It is a step-by-step process that is built on little steps over time. We will be with you every step of the journey. If you are struggling with addiction, let us help. Call us at 561-277-3088 to get started.