Holy Hyperawareness


“Hyperawareness,” best describes Step 6 for this alcoholic.  After spending seven weeks on Steps 4 & 5 with my sponsor, I got my five character defects in return.   Now I am obnoxiously cognizant and wary.  Was I born with greed and attention seeking? Where does my disease start and where do I end?  How interchangeable are the two? I don’t know how defects work, or whether or not as a group we alchy’s and addicts have predispositions to the same defected idiosyncrasies, but I do know which ones have been running my show.  Now I just want them to stop.

I took the whole, “searching and fearless moral inventory,” thing pretty literally.  I’m sure I’m searching a little too far forward and far back, which is probably why I feel like a vulnerable, exposed, creature of chaos.  I feel like Medusa, actually, and all those crazy snakes that live on her head are my defects.  Plus she was kinda crazy, really angry, and hideous; I feel all of these things now that Step 6 has brought such defined character flaws to the surface.

The alcoholic part of my mind tells me I was the last to know about my defects; that I’ve been a walking human deformity forever, and should be embarrassed.  This new hyperawareness has my mind running in circles; when I’m loud, I wonder if it’s because I’m seeking attention or because I’m naturally a boisterous individual, when I buy something I shouldn’t, I beat the crap out of myself for being greedy.  I hounded a lady today because she left her Starbucks table an absolute mess.  “Are you going to clean that up?”  I said more rhetorically than questioningly.

Was that my pride?  Do I have to give up pride?  This is what I mean by hyperaware. Yikes.

The serenity prayer says “grant me the knowledge to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”  If I can figure out what those differences are, I’ll be set…

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3 thoughts on “Holy Hyperawareness

  1. Michelle says:

    I don’t know why, but reading this reminded me of a conversation I had with a cousin:

    ME: I was such an asshole!
    COUSIN: Well, you were an asshole because when you drank you made bad choices. Now, you’re not drinking, you are able to make better choices. Of course you’re still going to make mistakes and you might come off as an asshole, but c’est la vie! At least you’re not ______ – she’s just a bitch,,,sober!!! There’s no changing that!

  2. Five char defects – that’s all?? lol. I have some you can borrow…ha ha.

    Remember we don’t do 4 and 5 to beat ourselves up. Steps 6 and 7 are probably my favourites – they are life long. They change. My understanding of them have deepend in the last 6 months, and I know I am just touching the tip of the iceberg. I have to be willing to be willing at times. Sometimes we hold onto those char defects, even without knowing. Sometimes I still like to be right. To be boastful. To be XXX <—fill in the blank. I hold onto them because i get a payoff of some kind. Ego and pride are the bash brothers in regards to that. So I sometimes have to pray for just the willingness to be willing! And then humbly ask Him to remove them. Then I have to act as if they have been removed! Walk through fears and ego and do it. Some things are easier to turn around. Some will be forever. I will never lose all of my char defects in this lifetime, but I aim for progress.

    And here's the kicker – the real scene stealer – what I may *think* is a char defect / shortcoming may be in fact one of my assets. But I don't get to choose these – I leave that to my HP. For example, my introverted nature is something I wished wasn't there, that I could be outgoing and gregarious. But I realize that it's probably never going to be like that, BUT my quieter and calmer nature attracts certain people, esp. men who are shy as well and can approach me in terms of sponsoring, etc. So it's an asset, in some way. And there are others that I am unaware of. And vice-versa – something I see as positive, might be a defect. Who knows. I don't.

    Like you, I wish I could know ALL those differences, but we ask Him to *grant* us the wisdom…and that takes time. More will be revealed 🙂


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