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|09-21-2012, 05:14 AM||#1 (permalink)|
Join Date: Oct 2011
Being a humble sponcor
I have to really get honest and tell on my alcoholic thinking here. I won't be able to talk with my sponcor about this untill later this evening and would appreciate some feedback.
I was recently asked to be a sponcor. I felt so unworthy at first and talked with my sponcor and she thought it was a good idea. Still thoughts of how I might have nothing to offer this woman. I met with my new sponcee yesterday and after she left I felt my ego soar, I think, I felt pleased with myself. I prayed for God's will to be done and not mine. But I really hate that I went there. I am embarrassed to admitt this, but, I know I need to.
Any advice on what to do with these feelings of pride?
|09-21-2012, 05:30 AM||#2 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Cleveland, OH
I had this conversation last night with a guy I sponsor. When I help someone it has the potential to go one of two ways. One, is what you are talking about. Ego inflation. "Look what I did!" I have the power to help someone." Or if I'm in the right spot spiritually I realize that I did not have the power to help myself therefore I must not have the power to help another. So if someone is helped by something I have said or done, I have just been used as a channel for God's power. And that is a humbling realization and I can't think of anything that feels better.
I probably call my sponsor more for questions about sponsoring than anything else. And 9 times out of 10 he reminds me that my ego is getting tied up in sponsorship. I'm under the dellusion that I can keep someone sober or get someone drunk. Bottom line is I share what I have done. The rest is in God's hands.
Thank you for sponsoring! AA needs you!
~All Big Book Quotes from the 1st edition
A man can no more diminish God's glory by refusing to worship Him than a lunatic can put out the sun by scribbling the word, 'darkness' on the walls of his cell.
C. S. Lewis
|09-21-2012, 05:56 AM||#3 (permalink)|
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: northern michigan. not the U.P.
i think its common when we help someone and the light bulbs start goin off for them. i must remember that it is my higher power working through me.me helpin? well, that would be tellin em,"go get drunk."
i think the reason for the ego boost, for me, was that i was a serious people pleaser and wanted to do and say things that helped people and i wanted them to like me more because i still had a low self esteem. but the good news is the steps helped me with that.
good to see someone wanted you to be their sponsor,though. by that and admitting yer faults it tells me yer working the program.
steps 6 & 7 are good to help with it, but i find it best to start at step1.
all big book quotes from 1st edition
|09-21-2012, 06:16 AM||#4 (permalink)|
AA Back to Basics
Join Date: Jun 2012
My opinion: Ego isn't a bad thing. It was given to us be better people. As in everything though, excessive Ego is not. As long as we guard against that we're OK. God will guide you through the rest.
This is a quote that was posted to SR a while ago. My old mind can't remember who posted it (Sorry whoever you are) but I think it fitting here:
When you walk to the edge of all the light you have and take that first step into the darkness of the unknown, you must believe that one of two things will happen: There will be something solid for you to stand upon, or you will be taught how to fly
|09-21-2012, 06:44 AM||#5 (permalink)|
Join Date: Nov 2009
With all my sponsees (after learning the hard way of course) I am up front with them from the beginning. This is not about me and them, this is not about them and AA. This is about them and God.
I am just there to direct traffic.
At the highest level of my job as a sponsor I am just Gods little errand boy. If I do that and remember that I am doing the best job I can.
The most importand phrase a sponsor need to know is "I don't know". If you have the humility to use that phrase when appropriate instead of making stuff up, you will find a freedom others lack as a sponsor.
All quotes are from the Alcoholics Anonymous.1st Edition
"Lord, take me where you want me to go, let me meet who you want me to meet, tell me what you want me to say, and keep me out of your way." - Fr. Michal Judge.
|09-21-2012, 07:06 AM||#6 (permalink)|
Join Date: Oct 2008
I have my own battles with pride. Used wrong, being too tied up in it, sets me up for a fall, and more pain... and I find myself going back into my 6th and 7th steps.
But recently I have been taking a look at the shame I felt initially when I came to the rooms, and there was a post here on SR yesterday about shame... I understand shame as being the opposite, or a result of too much... pride...
So it occurred to me that if I have no pride... then I become:
|09-21-2012, 07:06 AM||#7 (permalink)|
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Zion, Illinois
I always feel a sense of elation when I've been given a chance to be of some help to someone. I just got off the phone with a friend not 20 minutes ago who shared with me how his life continues to change for the better since he and I met. He said some pretty flattering things and of course I felt great. Here's the trick though. God put this guy in my life. I wasn't looking for him. God was a huge part of the talks we had and I continually give credit where credit is due. God puts people in front of us to give us a chance to be of service, to share what He gave to us in hopes that it will help that person. I'm not sober today because of anything I did. I'm sober through the grace of God and the fact that God gave me the gift of desire to stop drinking. I always have to remember(humbly), my relationship with God which keeps my ego in check.
Being a sponsor to someone is as simple as having a couple months in AA as opposed to a newcomer who's sitting at his first meeting. Sponsoring can evolve into much more than that but just sitting down with a newcomer and being willing to share is in effect, sponsoring. Giveing someone a ride to and from a meeting is sponsoring. Some people think they have to have worked the steps in order to sponsors and that's a valid point because we can't share what we don't have. I can't take a person through the steps unless I've worked them myself, but that doesn't mean I can't be an ambassador(sponso)to a new person and just share what I do have. Don't sell yourself short. Trust your sponsor enough to believe that you are capable of helping another person. No sponsor can "get" someone sober. All a sponsor can do is be the best guide possible and set an example.
|09-21-2012, 07:06 AM||#8 (permalink)|
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: The Trenches, Texas
I went through a phase of competitive sponsoring if that is where you are afraid your ego may take you. To elaborate further, I was more driven by collecting numbers than I was actually helping the individuals. Guess what, God still works in, through, and around me in spite of me...everyone that went through the steps during that phase is still sober, AND that has ZERO to do with me. It's a promise in the Big Book, perfectly situated in the midst of the fear inventory section, that if we do this deal then we get to let God demonstrate through us what He can do!
Now, for the other side of the coin. The side that gets riddled with self pity and how could any one possibly want what I have??? After all I haven't paid ALL the money back yet, I still live with my parents, I don't have a fancy, ego inflating job, yada yada yada...another tool of the acoholicky ego...and you bet, that all creeps in too! Fascinating creatures aren't we?!? Fortunately that promise in the fear inventory holds true on this side of the coin also...and again, I get to let God demonstrate through me what He can do.
“There is only one cause of unhappiness: the false beliefs you have in your head, beliefs so widespread, so commonly held, that it never occurs to you to question them.”-Anthony de Mello
|09-21-2012, 11:03 AM||#9 (permalink)|
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Upstate New York
Hate to have to break it to you, but it's not about you and what you can or can't do. It's about God and what He can and can't do (...and, just FYI, that'd be "everything" and "nothing" respectively!). You just say "yes" to being a tool in His hands and get yourself out of the way.
I'm not messin' with your head here.
I can't tell you how many times something has come up when someone asks me to sponsor him/her or when an issue I have no friggin' clue how to deal with comes up with a sponsee or a program friend and my first (ego) response is to seriously consider hyperventilating and go "I can't do this!" Actually, it's happened so many times that, at this point, that response doesn't even have a chance to come out of my mouth, because my immediate 2nd thought now is to breath calmly and listen to God's: "It doesn't matter, frey, because I can."
..and, yeah, He can and He's proven that to be true so many times now that I couldn't count them if I tried.
So, maybe you don't have that experience yet, but you will if you say "yes" and trust in your HP. (This is one of the most awesome things about sponsoring people -- there is no other situation in your life where you will ever feel the "touch" of God as strongly and as consistently!)
One thing I've found to be very helpful in this regard is the Set-Aside prayer:
God, please set aside for me everything I think I know about You, about myself, about (whoever the other person or people are in the situation), about (whatever the situation is -- i.e. this date or this meeting or this class, etc..), about (whatever the purpose of the situation is -- i.e. getting to know someone or recovery or learning or this subject matter, etc...), about (anything else that might be relevant at the time), and grant me a new and fresh experience of Your Truth in all these things here today! (When you are saying this prayer before doing 12th Step work, such as meeting a sponsee, add) : and grant me the privilege and the honor of being used as a tool in Your hands.
I say this every single time I'm going to meet with or talk to a sponsee. Depending on the situation and the people involved, I might even ask that we say it together. It really works, and I know for sure that it (God) has saved my *ss in some really hard situations when I've felt hugely intimidated and inadequate.
P.S. As far as the prayer goes, it is very important that you say: "please set aside for me" and not "please help me set aside"!!!!!!!!!
P.P.S. Are you sure what you felt was pride and not gratitude????? I guess I'm asking because I know that a lot of people early in recovery are not so great at identifying their feelings, and I know that, for me, a lot of the time after working with a sponsee I feel like absolutely, totally elated and I've come to realize that that's about my awe and gratitude at being allowed to stand as a witness of and a channel for some of the miracles that happen in recovery. I mean, because, who am I really to get to bear witness to this stuff?????? It's kinda mind-blowingly overwhelming!
Working the Steps isn't about me acquiring power; working the Steps is about removing the things that block me from being a channel for God's Power.
|09-21-2012, 11:17 AM||#10 (permalink)|
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Houston Texas
I wouldn't worry. One day, that same person will tell you that they really finally "got" something when someone shared in a meeting......and it'll be the same message you've been trying to share for 6 months.
lol.....sponsorship ego has a way of being burst fairly predictably.
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