Change is one of the few guarantees we have in life. However, when an individual decides to make one, even if it is positive, it is a difficult ordeal, which requires a lot of discipline, focus and determination. Working with inmates, alcoholics, drug addicts and batterers, I have noticed that society, as a whole, is not as forgiving as we would want them to be when one is making a change.
Many like to slap labels on others and want to keep them within the confines of that label. Heroin addicts, for example, who get clean, are in recovery for the rest of their lives. But, in many cases, instead of getting support from friends, colleagues and even family they are perceived and treated as wearing the addict label. It’s much easier, perhaps, to define others in a negative way than accept the positive change they made.
The things you have done don’t define you. It doesn’t matter what you have done, but it does matter where you’re going. And your destination requires that you make changes. We are complex, and are capable of extraordinary things. We are all forever changing, growing and evolving into the human being we want to be. I encourage people to maintain daily journals, because when you read what you wrote five years ago you can clearly see how you have changed.
Shouldn’t we encourage those making positive changes in their attitude, life style, intellectual, emotional and spiritual development?
What’s the first thing that comes to your mind when you hear labels, such as batterer, alcoholic, bad parent and addict?