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Serenity Prayer – Courage

The Serenity Prayer – Part Two

The Courage to Change the Things I Can

The second section of the Serenity Prayer seems to beg the question, “if I have something wrong in my life, why can’t I just change it so that my life becomes better?”  For those struggling with a dependency on alcohol or other substances, that question is easy to answer.  “I’ve tried over and over to make these changes, but I fail every time.”

Is it the dependency I am trying to change that is failing or is it my approach to change?  Saying I am tired of the problems and I want them to go away may be the reason for continued failure.  How have I tried to change?  Am I trying this on my own, being my own therapist, doctor, counselor, sponsor?  If that is the case, I can see the failure.  Trying to self-examine ourselves is a difficult task. For the most part, we cannot see the forest for the trees.  We need an external view which we cannot give ourselves.  This requires the help of another human being.

So back to courage, the Cowardly Lion in Frank Baum’s Oz, thought he had no courage, but as he walked the Yellow Brick Road with Dorothy, he displayed great courage on many occasions without realizing he was doing so.  I believe we are the same.  Wanting to change and not giving up takes courage.  Failing and getting back up again takes courage.  Reading this because you are looking for answers takes courage

I believe the most courageous thing is reaching out for help.  I am always the most gratified when someone comes into my office and says, “I am a mess and I need help.”  That is the greatest sign of courage ever.  I tell them that they have already overcome the most difficult part.  They realized that self-reflection was not going to solve the problem.  It required the help of another.

If this is where you find yourself and you believe a better life is possible, reach out.  Summon that ounce of courage to pick up the phone and call.  The rest is difficult but nowhere as difficult as what you have already experienced.

Dr. Fred

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