We talk much about new relationship behaviors in recovery: allowing others to be themselves without over-reacting and taking it personally, and owning our power to take care of ourselves. We talk about letting go of our need to control, focusing on self-responsibility, and not setting ourselves up to be victims by focusing on the other person while neglecting ourselves. We talk about having and setting healthy boundaries, talking directly, and taking responsibility for what we want and need.
While these behaviors certainly help us deal with addicted people, these are not behaviors intended only for use in what we call “dysfunctional relationships.”
These behaviors are our new relationship behaviors. They help us in stressful relationships. They can help us get through times of stress in healthy relationships.
The recovery behaviors we are learning are tools—healthy relationships skills—that help us improve the quality of all our relationships.
Recovery means self-care—learning to take care of ourselves and love ourselves—with people. The healthier we become, the healthier our relationships will become. And we’ll never outgrow our need for healthy behaviors.
Today, I will remember to apply my recovery behaviors in all my relationships—with friends and co-workers, as well as in any special love relationship. I will work hard at taking care of myself in the troublesome relationships, figuring out which skill might best apply. I will also consider ways that my healthy relationships might benefit from my new relationship skills.
From the book: The Language of Letting Go: Hazelden Meditation Series
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