A Spot-Check Inventory (Step Ten continued)

A spot-check inventory taken in the midst of such disturbances can be of very great help in quieting stormy emotions.  Today’s spot check finds its chief application to situations which arise in each day’s march.  The consideration of long-standing difficulties had better be postponed, when possible, to times deliberately set aside for that purpose.  The quick inventory is aimed at our daily ups and downs, especially those where people or new events throw us off balance and tempt us to make mistakes.

I’ve just looked these words over and over and over again, as well as reading again what just came before.  The “disturbances” it refers to are previously described as anger, jealousy, envy, self-pity and hurt pride – character defects, for sure, and an excess of negative emotion that results in a “dry bender.”

I’m still, of course, not clear on how the spot check goes.  This is not to say that my time in the program hasn’t helped me with all of this.  It beyond a doubt has.  For example, for a long time I’ve been able to react to confusion by asking for time or delaying a response or decision, when possible.  This I learned in AA, and this has served me very well.  My desire to go farther and deeper now is not a reflection of a failing of AA.  On the contrary, it’s because I know that it works that I turn to AA and that I desire to know it better.

Although my stormy emotions are much quieter than they were when I was new, or when I had ten sober years, I would like to learn to quiet them more quickly and more thoroughly than I do now.  Once in a while, negative emotion can ruin my day, to some extent.  That especially happens to me at home.  At work, I think the stormy emotions make me less effective.  The more I learn to handle all this, the better I do at home and at work.

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