AA Speaker – Bob D – Saturday Part 4 – Step 4

Bob Darrow I’m an alcoholic so the second section of the inventory is on fear it’s it’s odd you know I I I seem to go back every that’s been a while now but I guess I’m probably averaged about seven six seven years maybe I don’t know I’ll end up going back and doing an in depth steps four through nine and basically because I leaked and I if I understand theoretically that if I was diligent and consistently diligent and step eight or step ten and eleven that I probably would never need to do that but I like so many of us leak I’m not as diligent with that stuff and it slips through the cracks and as Wilson said no one among us has been able to maintain anything like perfect adherence these principles so what happens is here if you don’t do that great of it if you do a half-ass job and step ten eleven next thing you know you get weird and it’s not that you really get weird you’re not really getting weird but it just seems like everybody around you has gotten weird so it’s time to do inventory it’s time to clean house make amends etc and I don’t necessarily have to do it because there’s anything wrong with me I do it because I’m a giver and there’s something wrong with you and so when I do the work you get you seem to get better and so I do the work because it’s better when you’re better and it’s really not you buts me but because of this self-centered disease of perception when I’m sick it looks like it’s you ah so the next the next section is fear oh the point I was trying to make is in early my early years of sobriety when I go back through the steps again I there in the beginning it was a lot on resentment a little bit on fear a little bit on sex not much and is then I went through a days after my first divorce where it was a lot on sex a lot on fear a little bit on reason and now it seems like in the last 10-15 years it’s probably mostly fear because I can see past the resentments that every single resentments fear something was threatened little announcement it just is this public service announcement because I’m a I’m an other centered guy no you might want to turn your cellphone’s off and I’ll tell you I’ll tell you why it doesn’t matter me but if it goes off in the meeting what happens well everybody’s sitting around you turns and looks at you and you’ll spend the rest of the meeting having a conversation in your head with everyone who turned and looked at you trying to explain yourself to them and let’s face it your ex is not going to come to their senses and be properly ashamed of yourselves during this meeting and call so you might as well just turn it off save yourself a lot of grief public service announcement um so yeah right ah so fear a bill in step 7 and the 12 steps in 12 tradition says that self centered fear is the chief activator of all our defects of character alcoholics don’t lie because they’re liars they lie because they’re afraid I lie to myself because I’m afraid of the truth I lie to you because of a fear of confrontation and rejection I lie to you because I’m afraid and what is isn’t fear behind it all really what’s greed except the fear of not having enough and the fear of not ever being fulfilled and getting my share what’s lust except the fear of loneliness and and disconnection and being alone lack of never intimate what’s what’s anger accept of a defense mechanism that I use when I’m threatened or hurt so fear is really the driving force earlier in the book it says that we’re driven by a hundred forms of it I didn’t even there was fears that I had in my life I didn’t even know they were fears so I

finished my resentment inventory I’m a little over four years sober I’m sitting at the kitchen table with a legal pad and I wrote fears across the top of the page and I’m sitting there and I’m drawing a blank I can’t think of anything I’m afraid of now I know I knew that when I got sober I had a lot of fears like I was afraid of going to prison but I dealt with all that and didn’t have to go was amazing I was afraid of being homeless but I’m out of that that’s been raised I’m not going to be homeless I was afraid of a lot of stuff but I don’t think I have any fears anymore and so I thought well you know for God’s sakes I’m sober over four years I’ve been praying everyday I’ve took that third step maybe if AAA works and I’m just not afraid anymore so I went to the sinner group speaker meeting and after the meeting I went out to a restaurant with a bunch of the old-timers speaker and a couple other timers and I’m sitting in there and I’m telling this guy that I’m doing an inventory for a little over four years sober I’m doing a four step and I’ve discovered that I don’t have any fears and he looks at me and he goes really I said yeah I don’t I can’t find any fears he said would could I ask you some questions I said yeah sure he said well are you afraid of large angry barking dogs well forget everybody is for God’s well yeah but we’re not talking about everybody we’re talking about you well yeah yeah all right all right all right so you can put that down he said are you afraid of rattlesnakes well yeah you afraid of black widows but then he gets a little more personally says are you are you afraid of what people might be thinking about you oh yeah I watch your body language just to make sure you’re not hostile towards me I’m always thinking about what you might be thinking about me he said are you afraid of dying old alone are you afraid of no one will ever love you are you afraid that God isn’t really going to be there for you like you is for those good people in AAA are you afraid of getting sick and not being able to take care of yourself are afraid of cancer I I had cancer three thousand times in my mind uh you know I I don’t I don’t get headaches I get brain tumors you know what I’m saying right it’s just I’ve had I bet I have at least a couple dozen just deep heartfelt deathbed speeches rehearsed in my head he said are you afraid of success and people what people might expect are you afraid of failure are you afraid of never being a success and he went on and on and they finally said so is there anything you’re not afraid of and you know I tell you if you’re new you might as well just stay away from those old timers it’s some kind of spiritual jujitsu they just turn that stuff on you somehow I don’t know how they do it and what I discovered is exactly what it says in the book when it says that our fear our very the very fabric of our existence is shot through with it and yet I can’t see it I’m like a fish looking for water it is the driving force in my life and I don’t know it I don’t know that it drives the way I show up at work it drives how I go to meetings how I sit how I posture what I say how I dress my fear of what you’ll think of me and my fear a lot having approval my it that fear is really and truly the driving it’s the muscle of the ego isn’t it it’s so funny I get to a a and I have no my my if there’s any trust muscle in me it’s atrophied and is about dead but the fear muscle strong strong and so I the book says what we do we list our fears we put them on paper even though we had no resentment in connection with them so once again I’m making a list down this left hand side everything I’m afraid of I put down all my creditors because I it’s a everytime I owe someone I have a small measure of anxiousness about the debt I put all my secrets down of the things I’ve done to people that nobody knows about the mother the money I’ve

stolen that nobody knows I stole it I put all of that down because you can’t have a secret without having something that can be threatened and needs to be defended right so that’s a fear guilts of fear it’s a fear of retribution it’s a fear of consequences of fear of exposure I put it all down and I list all that stuff and then the second thing it says we ask ourselves why we had these fears and this is a good question because later on it we get into the section on step 8 it says something very interesting it says we have a list of all the people we harmed we made it when we took inventory so every name on my resentment list goes on my eighth step amends list and some of you just here I can hear the voices in your head they’re saying whoa whoa whoa everybody yes because remember amends is not about right or wrong it’s if they’re on your list their separation between you and them that needs to be mended now maybe you don’t have to go to them maybe it’s just forgiving them maybe it’s it’s sweeping away off your side of the street ignoring what they did wrong but if they’re separate they get on the list and and we’re going to have amends that come out of the out of the fear list so and here’s how you find out what they are you ask yourself why you have the fears and I’ll tell you we’re funny people I was into rehab a couple years ago Samaritan house and I the meetings over and this guy comes up to me he’s working on his fourth step he says can I talk to you I said yeah I said let’s go outside because you can’t smoke in the house he wants to smoke we can go outside we’re sitting out there and he pulls out a cigarette and lights it up takes a big hit off and he says I have some fears and I don’t know why I have them and I said oh okay oh like give me an example he takes another hit off the cigarette and he said well I got this fear cancer and and then then he says to me he says I don’t know why I have it my parents never had cancer I was never traumatized he’s looking for some deep childhood Freudian reason and he’s smoking and I said could it be because you’re smoking and it was like a deer in the headlights you oh because he finally gets it it’s all unfinished business it’s all stuff you’re going to bring God into you’re going to bring actions into what some I had a guy not too long ago will buy back and I wanted him to go to a meeting with me across town and he didn’t want to go and I kind of knew I didn’t want to go but he doesn’t know I know why he doesn’t want to go and he says oh I don’t really like that meeting I said oh yeah really huh but what what is it about that meeting you don’t like oh yeah I just not my type of people that’s all I you know you don’t have to like ever buddy do you suppose not is there anybody in particular at that meeting that that you just feel like don’t like to be around wow you know so and so not my kind of person don’t really care for him much I said so you’re a little anxious about being around him I don’t know but thanks I just don’t like him a decide I’m gonna be around him and I said you know why that is he said I just did I had to like him that’s all I said could it be because I knew something he didn’t know I knew I said could it be you don’t want to go around him because you talk crap about him behind his back when he’s not around and you’re afraid someone might have told him now you don’t want to go to a meeting where he goes and that was he looked at me like how did you know that well because I know me an alcoholic properly armed with information about himself can help another alcoholic well no one else can and it and so with the help of your sponsor in your fifth step you’re going to if you haven’t been able to answer this question and your fourth you’re going to try to answer it in your fifth to find out what what’s what’s the unfinished business here why do I have this fear some people are afraid of doing their taxes why because they’ve been cheating on their taxes for years so why do you have these fears we put them on paper it wasn’t it because the book says sort of it tries to answer in a generalized rhetorical manner I suppose when it says wasn’t it because

self-reliance failed us self-reliance is good as far as it went but it didn’t go far enough as a matter of fact earlier in this section it talks about fear setting in motion trains of circumstances which would bring you more misfortune you will feel you don’t deserve and then it says but didn’t we set the ball rolling see the reason self-reliance fails me is that I when I try to manage my fears I make them worse because most of my fears are around problems that don’t exist problems that will correct themselves in time because it’s they’re not really problems it’s a perceived problem based on fear and what happens is I get in there and start on self-reliance and what instead of solving the fear problem I make it worse I can give you a couple examples what am I my first sober relationship I you know I’m dating this girl I don’t have I don’t have a good job I don’t have I’m staying with somebody I don’t have I have a old hunter dollar car that you know I have nothing to bring to the table except need right I don’t have any you know I’m like I’m like the black I’m like the black hole of love you know what I mean I’m just I want to get to close to me or you won’t be able to get your ship out of my vortex you know and today I totally cannot it’s all I gots neediness because I’ve not done any work or anything in life to fill my own vacancies I have nothing to give here except need so I go in this relationship with a tremendous fear and it son realized because I don’t even want to talk to myself about this fear because I don’t even want to admit to myself that I’m this pathetic but the truth is I’m scared to death she’s gonna leave me and what happens unbeknownst to me this fear drives me and it works on me until I’m the guy that’s driving by her apartment in the middle of the night peeking in the windows to make sure no guys are there it drives me to be watching her in me I see her at Winona meeting with together I’m always watching her and if some guy comes up my hugs or me and I’m jumping the guy after the meeting you stay away from my girlfriend my fear of her leaving me drove me to such a level of fear and possessiveness that I didn’t even know I was starting to draw I’ve her white right out of my life she said to me one time she’s I don’t like to go to meetings with you I said how come she says because every time I look up you’re looking at me well yeah I don’t even get it I don’t even know what I’m doing and what happened is my fear of her leaving me set in motion and positioned me to make the fear come true psychiatrists call it self-fulfilling prophecies my sponsor tried to talk to me about that and he C tried to tell me I was doing it and I didn’t get it I didn’t get it I remember the day she left she went to mention Lee went with some other guy just left and I was like I was devastated here’s funny funny thing my ego made the judgment that she that she was going to be she was going to leave me and then it started positioning to protect me from that and when she left I heard a little voice in my head say to me in the midst of my desolation and pain the voice said see you were right I like being right got shot devastated thinking about drinking but I’m right and how does that happen we make this – I’ve lost jobs for the same reason because I go to work and I’m afraid that people won’t accept me there and the fear of not being liked and accepted and fitting there has driven me to be the odd man out the guy that eventually I’m so on the muscle at work and so defensive that people are starting to shy away from me and I’m making the try making the fear come true so wasn’t it because self-reliance failed us and then what’s the answer to this if you’re driven by all these fears and you in your in sobriety and you’re destroying your life sober and you can’t seem to stop what’s the answer well the

book says perhaps there is a better way we think so for a now in a different basis what’s the different basis on the decision we made in step three and it says we’re on a different basis the basis of trusting and relying upon God We Trust infinite God rather than our finite limited inadequate self to trust God trusting the theory of trusting God is easy to accept the actions of trusting God are very difficult in the face of my own fear and the conversations in my head I was uh I was before I took my first legitimate fourth step I was I was experiencing a lot of anxiety I’m one of those kind of guys that I I’m a worrier and I worry myself until I implode almost into a depression and I hate the anxiety and yet I can’t stop I think sometimes this this delusion that I’m a victim of this delusion I can rest satisfaction and happiness out of this world if I manage well manifests is I see a potential problem and I think I can make it go away if I think about it enough right and if you’ve ever liked if you’ve ever tried to do that it just makes it worse so I’m at this retreat there’s a guy Ted Davis an old-timer there and talking with Ted and I told Ted all about this I said I don’t know Ted I I get up in the morning I say the third step prayer and I just you know it’s not long after that I’m full of nerve I’m full of anxiousness and I’m uptight and and he said you said while you pray have faith in God I said yes I do I’m sober longer than I’ve ever been in my whole life since I first took a drink and I didn’t do that I know God did he said well you have faith he said but you got to have trust he said faith isn’t enough matter of fact he said to me he said alcoholics of art I can have all the faith in the world and pray all the time and still drink themselves to death and I have seen that in sobriety he said what we must have is is trust and he said I’ll tell you the difference if you went to a circus and you sat in the audience and you watched a tight wire act and you watched a professional tight wire Walker come out to the edge of the platform where the wire starts and he’s pushing a wheelbarrow you could have all the faith in the world he’s a professional he could walk across that tight water pushing that will bow you’d say to yourself I bet she’s done a thousand times absolute faith he can do it but if you had trust you’d climb up there and get in the wheelbarrow and let him push you across I hated that story because see cuz I get it I know what he’s talking about and I’m and I understand because I’m I understand it and I I don’t object to it intellectually I know the value of getting in the wheelbarrow trusting God I understand that and I like reading about it and I like going to book studies and studying it I like going out to coffee with people and talking about trusting God getting in the wheelbarrow I like philosophizing about what it would be like to be in the wheelbarrow I just ain’t getting in the wheelbarrow you know what I’m saying I read write because I’m so afraid and I don’t trust God all I’ve trust is my I’ve listened to my fears for decades and they own me and to become that vulnerable and to get that wheelbarrow I got iconic I got in there and became that ver Noble I think I get halfway across that wire I hear that voice is that Bob oh is that National Geographic and in the magazine store Bob because I don’t trust God so what do you do if you understand I mean really understand that you need to get in the wheelbarrow yet emotionally you’re incapable of letting go what do you do the book talks about getting to a place or you’re crushed by self-imposed crisis’s in other words you did something to bring this all on self-imposed crisis’s you cannot

postpone or evade it’s coming at you and it says at that point we have to fearlessly face the proposition that gods either everything or he’s nothing if there is or isn’t and then it’s asked the question bob what’s your choice going to be and you will make your choice by your actions not by what you think and I think what happens to some of us is we live our lives on self-will and we cause so many consequences sometimes in sobriety and they’re coming at us and you get to that point where there’s nothing you can do to save yourself from any of it and it’s coming down on you and there’s either a god or you’re screwed first time that ever happened to me I wasn’t sober very long and I don’t even really believe in God yet I mean starting to a little bit I’ve been praying for a little while and I’m starting to see some coincidences happen but I’m not really there yet and trust no I don’t title trust that and all of a sudden I got backed into a corner I had warrants I was convinced I had warrants out for my arrest in Pennsylvania because I’d been sentenced to two years in state penitentiary and the commitment had been stayed by the judge I was put into a long-term treatment center I was supposed to stay for a year and I couldn’t do it I couldn’t stay sober a year and I went on my last run and I hitchhiked all the way to Las Vegas from Pennsylvania and I am now I’m sober about two months maybe something like that enough where the fog’s lifted my friend of mine says the fog he says the newcomer when the fog lifts the planes start to land and the planes were landed and the big plane came in was the fear of the warrants out the two years in prison because now the fog’s lifted I’m starting to think about this stuff and I’m starting to get really really uptight no one that that’s coming at me it’s an eventualities I went and I talked to a guy named I I told him I said I said I don’t want to do I can’t go to jail I said this is all happening and I know that the warrants should be out by now because I’ve missed an appointment with my Pio and they found out that I’ve been thrown out of that place I was in I I’m sure it’s inevitable and he said to me he said well said you need to go to your call your Pio contact your Pio and offer to go back and do the two years and I looked at him like what are you crazy I don’t jail well he said he he wants me to go back I said I can’t I’m not actually I’m sober I’m going to meetings I’m doing very well I don’t want to go to prison he said you have to turn yourself in I said no I don’t he said yes she do he said you want to stay sober yes I want to die of alcoholism No he says to me how long are you going to stay physically sober looking over your shoulder when every time a cop car goes down the street your gut just wrenches up because you imagine he’s got your picture on his dashboard how long are you going to be able to go until you’re gonna have to take something to take the edge off of that how long kid man he backed me right into a corner I what he was saying is right and I don’t there’s nowhere to go there’s no maneuvering room I ain’t got a plan here there’s no way to duck or dodge this thing and I and he I know what he saying is right so he walked me through the process he told me to write a letter to my Pio he told me to put the address of the halfway house in the letter I thought that was a bad idea I said they’ll be able to come and don’t know where I am they could come pick me up he said oh yeah he said yeah we want to be able to do that my god there’s people in AAA they have loving sponsors I got this guy Jesus Christ he said put your address in there tell him that you want to clean this up and you’re willing to come back to Pennsylvania girona cost your own expense and make this right do the time do whatever they want you to do tell him in the letter you’ll call him say give him ten days make put a date down ten days out from the day you send a letter that’ll give him enough time to get the letter read the letter talked his boss or the courts whoever he has to talk to discuss with just till they figure out what they want to do with you give him a time and day ten days out and call him then I wrote the letter didn’t want to write the letter was not my idea was his

letter not my letter I didn’t want to write this letter I wrote the letter showed it to him he thought it was good I took it to the mailbox I dropped it in the mailbox and instantaneously I’m trying to get my arm in there to get it back and I just I just anguished over the next 10 days I could barely sleep I I would just in my head I’m worrying about this I oh it’s brutal the tenth day came and I went to the phone in the office it and I went to the phone I called up and this woman answered the phone and she I told her who I was and I was calling so-and-so and she said he’s expecting your call she put me right through and a man answered the phone that I didn’t really know I mean I sat in his office two or three occasions I suppose I’m he has no reason to like me or stand up for me or help me I’m just another bum on his case list it didn’t show up and do what he’s supposed to do and he answers the phone and he says I got your letter what my letter says I got your letter and I read it we took it to my supervisor we took it to the courts and you don’t have to come back here and do the two years we’re going to keep it down to a misdemeanor we’re not going to jack it back to a felony and if you can will transfer your case to Nevada and you’ll have to go down to CRS and report down there once a week and you’re probably going to have to take a class on DUI or something and you might have to give your analysis down there but just do whatever they want you to do and at the end of a year they’ll free you or Freedia and you’ll be off the deal but if you don’t do this there’s no more chances and I thought oh man this is easy I’m glad to do it all and I got off that phone and I was so elated I didn’t know if I wanted to laugh or cry it was something as if some huge weight had been lifted off of me and I felt a freedom that was unbelievable and it was the first time in my life that I ever took actions that I didn’t believe in that threatened me that were not my idea it was the first time I ever positioned myself in life the way a surrendered person would position themselves what is surrender look in the movies you see people surrender in war movies what do they do the first thing they do is they abandon all their means of defending themselves guns knives hand grenades Jeep tank whatever they walk away from they’d abandoned it until they’re rendered defenseless and absolutely vulnerable and then they sit down and they wait for someone to tell them what to do it was the first time I ever took actions that weren’t self-serving that weren’t my idea it was the first time I ever ever exercised the trust muscle in me I came out the other side and I was it was and I was free it was like a postcard from a god I don’t even believe in dear Bob I got your back love God and over the years I’ve been I’ve been forced by mistakes I’ve made and and amends I’ve have to face it scare me and and and all kinds of stuff and fears I’ve had to walk through to keep getting into the wheelbarrow because of a lack of alternatives and the trust Trust is like this muscle the more you take the actions of someone who trusts the stronger the trust muscle gets and I’ll tell you what happens in time and I I can I’m this is exactly my experience it gets a lot easier until it almost becomes effortless the moment I’m threatened or afraid I just turned to God it’s turn to God that is really a hundred and eighty degrees from everything that I brought here because in my in the old days the moment I was anxious or afraid I turned to me I wouldn’t up here into the control center and tried to figure it out I’m one of those kind of guys when things turn bad I want to go somewhere and think and now I’m turning to God and I’m turning towards a a I’m talking to my sponsor I’m praying I’m trying to show up like someone would who

would show up that really trust God one of the things it says in here in the fear part it says that when we’re afraid we do two things we and they both involve God we ask God to remove the fear and we ask him to turn our attention to what he would have us be what would God have me be how would a guy who trusts God who lives to serve and not to rule how would a guy who trusts God show up and present himself in life how would he act in this situation Bob evidently not like your acting how would he act how would a guy who trust God act here and then to try to get the vision of what he would have me be and then when all else fails try to show up and be that guy some sometimes it when I’m afraid one of the great the great efforts in trust is to do nothing is to do nothing is to position myself where I feel driven like I need to do something to fix us and to do nothing and wait the book says in step 11 we pause when agitated I think some of us are used to attacking when agitated the pause won’t add it and if you take your hands off your life God works best and what happens in time and time and time and time again is that the problem is not a problem it will correct itself by itself without your help over and over does that mean you’re always going to get your way no because sometimes the correction is you don’t get your way and then time goes by and you go sure glad I didn’t get my way because we don’t know I don’t know what’s good for me I don’t know it’s some of the some of the things in my life today that I cherish the most when I was receiving them I hated it I didn’t want it they turned out to be some of the greatest things and then some of the things that I was so excited to rest and manipulate and pull into my life once I got it in there oh that was a mistake I didn’t want it I bet you there’s I’m not the only person in this in this room that’s had some targeted some person for a relationship and you think oh this is going to be really good and then six months later you’re going oh my god how did I get in this I can’t get out how what am I here what am I going to do I think I think I just might as well kill myself that’s all I just I just might as well kill you know I mean you know cuz you got what you wanted and you realize that you don’t know you don’t know what you want you don’t know what’s good for you one of the things that’s materialized in my life is a consciousness in a vision and I really get this that God’s vision of Bob’s life is so much better than Bob’s best vision of Bob’s life and you know how I know that is when I take my hands off my life and let it unfold it goes better than it ever could go with extreme effort to make it good matter of fact that might think my life is sometimes like a light bulb if you try to shape it all you end up doing is cracking it and then it doesn’t work once it’s cracked there’s no more light so I I try to live a hands-off does that mean I don’t respond no I respond yeah I have an appointment supposed to show up a a101 be where you’re supposed to be do what you said you were going to do respond responsibility is the ability to respond to life life asked me to go up to London Ontario and do a workshop okay get on the plane at a certain time okay I don’t need to maneuver I don’t I just need to show up to show up just go where you’re supposed to go do what you’re supposed to do let the chips fall where they may what an effortless life what a good life you know I wonder all the anxiety is gone when you’re not in charge it’s sandy used to say so he said a couple things that just I’ve kept dear to me ever since one time he painted a picture he said what if your life is like an amazing play that God has orchestrated for your entertainment and for your joy and if you can just be in the audience and / – are supposed to get up on the stage and say a line then go back and just sit then get back to just

watching the deal it’s a wonderful play when you’re not directing it when you’re directing it it’s a bad deal enjoy the show my friend Scott Redmond and it’s God’s a funny playwright oh he writes some facili stuff self funny stuff Scott Redmond used to say that he thought when he died got it ask him one question Scott did you get the joke because it was huge who is you Scott did you get the joke what an entertaining universe this is if you don’t have to run it and it’s not your responsibility what’s it say in step three the first of all we had to quit playing God it didn’t work that takes us up to sex I have at times been disappointed that the sex inventory isn’t actually about sex because if it was fifth steps would be more entertaining it’s about it’s about selfishness it’s about dishonesty it’s about it’s about fear it’s about selfish in consideration it’s about unjustifiably arousing jealousy bitterness suspicion it’s about harms done to others it’s about developing a vision based on what you could have done better for your future sex life and your relationships and so what do I do is I make a list of all the people that I’ve had sexual energy with all the people I pursued or been with or whatever and I’m doing that to look at how self gets even tweaked even further when the three basic instincts are aroused that Wilson talks about in the 12 steps in 12 traditions he said the things that drive us are the instinct for sex the instinct for security both emotional and material and the instinct for a place in society in other words what other people think of you and in the sexual relationship arena is possibly the only thing you could participate in where all three of those instincts can be highly threatened if you ever gone through a divorce I don’t know what it’s like up here but where I come from it’s community property which means going through a divorce all first of all your sex life is threatened because that’s your secure material security is threatened because chances are they’re going to end up with half of whatever you got I had a friend it was divorced married and divorced five times in sobriety he said the saddest thing I ever heard he said every time I get divorced they get half he said the halves are getting smaller I just I heard that and went oh yeah oh boy and society I’m an emotional security and society I don’t know anyone who wants to have that has that wants to go to their family or their a a group and tell them that that relationship is a failure that I’m going through a divorce I don’t know anybody wants to wants people to know I just it’s terrible it’s embarrassing so this is the one area we’re all through those can be threatened and consequently the greater potential for self-centered fear and if what bill says is true if fear really is the muscle of the ego then it’s the greater potential to activate all our defects of character is in relationships because of the three can be the most threatened there there’s an old adage you hear people kid around say things like getting into a relationship is like pouring a miracle-gro on your defects I mean I don’t know but I do know that you can get a lot of fear when there there’s a lot of joy when they go well but there’s a lot of fear when they don’t and so we take a look at this and we list all these relationships then there’s there’s nine questions in each relationship and it’s where so this is like bullet points okay with this person first person where had I been selfish where where were you

me first where did you dress it up and look try to look kind enough and loving and all that stuff that you’re really concerned about you when push came to shove it was your security it was your comfort was your way was your fine where were you selfish where were you dishonest dishonesty I’ve come to believe causes more problems in relationships than anything else and it because it ties back into it old Korb beliefs and ideas that we have and one of them and this this rides ride some of us in well into sobriety for years the idea that if you knew everything about me that I know about me that you would probably feel about me the way I feel about me the fear of rejection drives guys like me and people like us often to misrepresent ourselves and we don’t do it we know we’re not we know we’re supposed to be honest we get that so it’s not out and out lies what I do is I did this for from the time I was eleven years sober after my first divorce till I was probably fifteen I would meet someone and they just light me up and I would introduce them to it’s kind of like Bob it’s it’s Bob like it’s it’s what it what I’m introducing them to it’s it’s like the best of Bob on steroids on his very best day that’s the Bob you’re going to meet well but that’s not the real Bob because we all got warts we all got little things from time to time we all got our little little self eat all that stuff well got this stuff but I am so afraid that if you knew all about me that you would reject me and then what happens well that person’s falling in love with a facade you know what happens when that happens you immediately will lose respect for them because it’s just another another mark you fooled there’s an old adage that from Groucho Marx it’s that’s funny it’s but I turn it around and change it a little bit that when you find someone that really really loves you they’re automatically below your standards I mean cuz you want somebody with good taste don’t you I mean you know right right that’s but you know I said some of there’s remnants of that in me today I got it I just laugh at it though it doesn’t own me I let so it’s funny but sometimes I’ll be in a conference somewhere and I’ll be speaking and and and people will come up and say wonderful things about your right and fatal and it’s nice I mean it’s nice on one hand but the minute they start it’s like I start losing respect for them it’s like hos the best talk I ever heard boy are you stupid Jesus you know I I don’t say that I mean I don’t say that I I don’t say I don’t say it my sponsors taught me just to say thank you just thank you that’s very kind just to say that but it’s hard I can’t Ike you could insult me you could tell me I’m you think I’m us you could tell me I’m you think I’m a selfish self-centered son of a [ __ ] and I would go yeah yeah that’s right and I would instantly have a lot of respect for you I think now this guy’s smart but you start telling me I’m wonderful there’s something wrong with you and that that it’s funny I’m 36 now four years sober and I still from time to time find those little quirky little reactions the only difference I think is I laugh at them I think they’re silly and entertaining I have become over the years as a result of this trusting in God and watching the show rather than running it I become my favorite comic and my favorite audience at the same time and if once you can start to laugh at yourself oh my god there’s life’s wonderful because you’re always just amazingly a newly entertain’d from moment to moment as you start to get the joke right as you start to get the joke I sponsor a lot of guys oh the entertainment value and some of them is

off the charts I mean I mean Aaron oh my god he’s like he’s like five episodes of Benny Hill I mean all just 10 10 minutes with him it’s like oh my god it’s amazing it’s amazing and I’m like that with my sponsor ah because we’re and what happens is I get free of myself as I start to laugh at myself and I laugh I don’t laugh at you I laugh at the me that is in you because it’s silly and me and it’s silly in you to all the things I worry about and all the things all the all the positioning and all the defense it’s a silly silly stuff so I started asking myself where was I dishonest and there’s this pathological dishonesty that alcoholics are capable of you know it uses a term in our book over and over again it determines self delusion it doesn’t talk about denial in the first 164 pages but that’s it that’s something that came in around the a through treatment centers back in the late 70s and 80 we talk about something more insidious than denial it’s called self delusion denial is your lion you know you’re lying you’re keeping you know it’s you’re denying self delusion is you’re you’re dishonest and you don’t even know it you don’t even know it it’s a psychotic wishful thinking and we do it in relationships it’s like I’m not really the guy you need to be with but I want to be with you so bad that I start imagining I could be that guy or you’re not really the person yeah I need I need six or seven points of compatibility to make this work you have one of them it’s usually good it’s usually good sex and then I will then I will imagine you have the other five and then get angry when you don’t demonstrate them now who’s the crazy person here it’s not you you never said you had those things I’m the guy with the psychotic wishful thinking that wants you I just believe it under my tutelage that you’ll come around that I could you know we don’t we don’t have relationships we buy abandoned fixer-uppers and and it’s the old it’s the old a big million my fair lady syndrome oh I’ll fix her up she’ll be grateful forever I mean you know right it is never that way it never works out that way at all it never works out that way ah where was I decides where was I inconsiderate self-centered people have a horrid degree of in consideration and were not conscious of it oh my god it what it is is that I’m so wrapped up looking at stuff that’s going on with me I don’t see you it’s not conscious it’s not malicious it’s just I got me right here when I’m right here I don’t see you I have a guy guys sponsor he’s married to a lovely gal and he adores her he really does and she’s got he’s got ever since he’s been sober it’s very he’s got a pretty high-power job now and it’s very important to him to be on time for appointments and dinners and things matter of fact he he believes if he’s not he feels like if he’s not a couple minutes early he’s late very important him and he’s had conversations with his wife about how important this is she’s on board yes yes honey I get it ah I get it Wow they’re going out to a important corporate dinner and they have to be there at eight o’clock takes 20 minutes to get there so he tells her they have to be there at 7:30 because he knows how she is right and it looks like a good plan now they’re gonna she’s running a little late okay but they’re still gonna make it in plenty of time it’s going to be good and she’s getting ready to leave and there’s a mirror in the foyer for a of their house and she walks by the mirror and looks in the mirror goes know that dress doesn’t work and she goes back upstairs and starts all over again and he’s late again and it drives him crazy and here’s the sad part she doesn’t know she’s she thinks she doesn’t see that she’s making him late she sees that she knew that snot the right dress in her consciousness there’s no malice there

she doesn’t even get it guys through the same thing guys so kind of we watching a football game and the what the wife might as well just not exist I mean just because he’s so focused I had an experience years ago I was dating a gal she I was sober 15 years probably she was sober about seven and I was a past chairman of the local convention at the time at the Riviera and I went with my date she could care less about the convention she just was going her boyfriend to summon a a event and there’s a big hospitality room and with two doors one at each end and I’m I’m standing at the one door with my girlfriend talking and I look down and coming through the other door as a dear dear friend of mine matter of fact he he just passed away a couple of days ago with over 50 years guy named John H John John was a dear friend I sweat spent time at his house at a bad point my sobriety we’ve been very close John comes through with his wife and some friends and I was so oh my god I was so excited to see him because he lives in Atlanta and I don’t see him very often and I just got lit up the minute I saw him and all my god John and I ran down and gave him and his wife a hug and I was so excited now that is my experience I date on the other hand has been left standing all by herself at the end of a hospitality room why her boyfriend runs off to be with his buddies I didn’t even know I did that later I knew more about what I did than I ever imagined I needed to know did she get hurt yeah she got hurt did I try to hurt her died attendant no I didn’t intend her to hurt her I didn’t even know I’m doing that that’s the the in consideration that’s manifested by self centered self focused people we’re just we don’t we’re not awake to our we don’t see ourselves the way others see us and I think that’s 90% of the spiritual awakening here as we start to wake up to what our actions look like to the rest of the world and I’ll tell you something when this happens the world starts to change because now there’s no more mystery now you know why she left you because you see it from her point of view and oh my god Ida left me too you know why the boss has fired you you know why because you put you stand in their shoes and look at it you too fired you too you stop looking at get life through the excuses and the justifications and you start seeing what everybody else is seen all along the truth the truth and this is a different world it’s a good world it’s God’s world it’s a great world to enjoy it’s a great world to be entertained in it’s a great world to learn how to love it’s a great world to serve in it’s just a terrible terrible world to try to control but it’s a great world to love and serve in um let’s take a 7 minute 18 second break