Thank you for sharing. And, welcome to the forum!
"I am my own -- greatest critic." A little voice (sometimes not so little) that says things like:
"Why is it taking you so long?"
"Why isn't this working?"
and several other things, too!
For me, the voices seem to center around the idea of "perfection." This morning, I was wondering "who's voice is that? and, where did it come from -- that says to me that anything, anyone, or myself -- has to do or be perfect -- and to do or be perfect right now?"
I'm sure that after being around the rooms, you've watched newcomers make a tremendous change for the better in their lives -- yet, they don't see it.
The Big Book writes about this -- indicating that it must be common for us -- to be making progress rapidly -- and everyone else notices it, except us!
I know that this has been true for me.
One of the things that used to drive me right back to the bottle were those danged voices!
I believe that the quality of our total life experience is a direct result of the stories that we tell ourselves. So, if those voices are talking to me and I'm listening to them -- it won't be long, and I'll be screwed.
Since I couldn't stop the voices that I didn't want to hear -- I started telling myself stories of things that I did want to hear -- things that were good and healthy and inspired me, and I'd turn up the volume on the good stuff. And, I began to get some good results.
Another thing I recognized is: I spend too much time thinking about myself. Imagine that!
So, I had to find a way to think about other things rather than to think about myself.
The best way that I found to do it was:
1. Try to find other people that I can help or that I can be doing something for them. For me, it works best when I am doing it anonymously and not letting them know that I am the one that's doing it. That keeps my mind busy, doing good things for others, it keeps my mind off of me, and my life automatically gets better as a result of it.
2. I get or make my own meeting commitments. Example: to make it a point to show up early at a meeting and help set it up. And, then to greet each person that comes in with a smile, something nice to say about them, a welcome, and a handshake.
3. I'll go to an Emergency Room, and drink some coffee and just watch people. Or, I'll go somewhere like Salvation Army, or a Rescue Mission -- and observe homeless people, or severely handicapped homeless people. And, I'll try to think of something small and do-able, that I might be able to do for them. That seems to give me a new outlook with something else to compare my life with -- since I can't seem to stop comparing, anyway!
When I do stuff like that -- suddenly there is a new voice in my head that says "You must not be such a bad guy after all!" And, I feel better. And, I begin to notice how some things have been changing in me -- and in my life.
I appreciate your sharing because now, as I look over what I've shared -- a 1001 ideas are running through my head of what I can do today that will continue to make my life better, cause me to feel better and to be a little more productive today -- than I was yesterday. And, that's what I call progress.