Have you ever listened to yourself on a recording? It sounds nothing like it does in your head, right? Whenever I hear my own, it’s always a deeper, more serious version of me. That’s how people actually hear me. Dig it – people hear me differently than I hear myself. Sounds about right.
Step 9: made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
So many of my conflicts start with my tone. Am I upset, or just being funny? Or maybe I’m trying to smooth over an irritation of my own making? Playfully complaining becomes angrily bitching pretty quick: it’s called getting myself all worked up. And in the old days, there was a reason for me to get upset: my isolated drinking sometimes required a justification, any justification, to the point where the littlest things would set me off out of necessity. And if everything was going fine and dandy, I’d self-sabotage. Listen, I was going to go drink whether I liked it or not. It was going to happen. I’d leave quickly and quietly if that option was available; otherwise my departure would follow a diatribe at no one in particular.
My tone would often set my tone. What was I angry about? Well, what ya got? It follows that something is wrong; I’m in a foul mood. But nothing could be further from the truth: nothing tangible is physically, mentally or spiritually wrong. But I’m irritated by something unknown, and that means I get to enjoy the anger that comes from the inability to identify my anger.
It’s becoming more and more apparent that I’m never 100% sure of what my mood is, mainly because it can be way too easy to switch from one to the other. Rock ‘em, sock ‘em, knee-jerk reactions from one extreme to the next is a tough way to go through life.
Today: I try to get out in front of my moods. Get myself grounded in the program and the fellowship. There doesn’t need to be an investigation into why I’m feeling the negative way I’m feeling each and every time I’m feeling it. Sometimes it’s wiser to quit looking for blame and concentrate on getting back to right-size.