Jan 12


If holding on to anger is like drinking poison the obvious question is how do we keep from being angry?  Much like any other emotion anger can sneak up on us without much warning.  How could we ever hope to keep it from happening when we can’t see it coming most of the time?

For me the emotion of choice early in recovery felt more like fear but in truth the two are just slightly different reactions to what we consider negative circumstances.  Emotions are responses, often natural and healthy, to what’s going on around and inside of us.  We need to feel them and work through them to be healed. This is where our quote comes into play…

“Holding on to anger is like drinking poison and hoping the other person dies.”  ~ Unknown origin

It is not in feeling emotions but in holding on that the poison begins to enter our systems.  The original feelings and events are magnified and multiplied as we play them out in our heads over and over again.  The initial flash of anger left unresolved turns into resentment, bitterness, hate and violence.   Fear grows into worry, grief, paranoia and depression.  In time we are consumed and the spiritual maladies run rampant.  Life becomes unmanageable and to some extent we are in fact dying, at least on the inside.

In recovery we learn that every challenge in life presents an opportunity for healing.  As we begin to let go of our need for control and admit our powerlessness we find that our initial reactions and emotions can be felt and addressed most effectively by connecting with the true Source of peace and power.  They are simply signposts along the journey that mark areas for growth, for practicing forgiveness and acceptance.  We finally begin to understand that we really cannot change anyone or anything until we change our own thinking.   Our emotions are a gift, tools to help us recognize the need for change.  As we begin to heal the obsession is lifted and we realize that fear and anger are only fatal if we refuse to let them go.

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