Letting Go of Worry in Recovery
June 29, 2012
Summer officially began last week and with new seasons people try to refresh and renew their minds and spirits. One impediment to being renewed and hitting the re-start button is holding on to resentments, worries and perceived problems. In addiction treatment programs, it is taught that these three are especially detrimental to one’s recovery from drugs and alcohol.
Resentments spark anger and cause one to brood in the past and it is antithetical to the spiritual principal of forgiveness. Worry imprisons the mind from the present moment and saps it of its usefulness. Focusing on problems takes people away from staying and living in spiritual solutions.Mark Twain advised “drag your thoughts away from your troubles….by the ears, by the heels, or any other way you can manage it.” One recovery tool that has been useful to many, helping them drag their thoughts away from resentment, worry and troubles, is creating a God box.A God box is a symbolic way for people to get rid of worries and troubles by writing them down on a piece of paper and placing them inside the God box. In that light, they are turning over their resentments and worries to God. Once placed in the box, they have given up the burden of the problem, let go of control over it and placed it in God’s hands. While the mind may come back to the problem, the power of the problem is lessened by the symbolic gesture. It is a way for one to say “this has burdened me but it is not useful for me to hold on to anymore, I can’t do it alone so I give it to you.”
A God box can be formed from anything; metal, paper, wood or glass. It must be large enough to fit small pieces of paper that can be placed in through opening a lid or putting into a slot. The best part of the God box is that one is able to turn their worries over and have the burden lifted. This becomes evident when they peek in the box weeks or months later and realize that their resentments, worries and perceived troubles really have subsided.
Here are some pictures of God boxes people have made in drug treatment programs: