One thing I have learned in my recovery journey is how important my attitude is to my progress. I can get down on myself very easily.
“Why can’t I overcome my codependence? Why can’t I start this, or why can’t I stop that?”
In addition, I can easily get into destructive thinking patterns about those around me, especially those I claim to love the most. This can lead me to blaming and complaining. I can use these negative thoughts to perpetuate my own denial and self-deception. (My minister recently said that we are all experts in self-deception – we see it all around us, but we often can’t see it in ourselves.)
I recently received a very powerful story. It is a wonderful reminder about how my attitude influences (or even directs) my actions, my progress, and my overall mental and spiritual health. This as a legend attributed to the Cherokee Nation.
One evening, an old Cherokee told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people. He said, “My Son, the battle is between two wolves inside us all.
“One is Negativity. It is anger, sadness, stress, contempt, disgust, fear, embarrassment, guilt, shame and hate.”
“The other is Positivity. It is joy, gratitude, serenity, interest, hope, pride amusement, inspiration, awe, and above all, love.”
The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather:”Which wolf wins?”
The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”
This is a wonderful reminder that I need to be mindful about which wolf (or internal attitude) I am feeding. Am I perpetuating negative thoughts? Or am I filling my mind and my heart with uplifting thoughts, thoughts that honor God, me, and the others around me?
I need to daily ask God to fill my mind and my heart with healthy thoughts so that I can feed the right wolf, or attitude.
Which one are you feeding? Negativity or positivity?
Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. (Romans 12:2, NIV)
Contributed by a leader at Celebrate Recovery on the Plateau.