this is how I used to deal with my drinking problem.
I knew I had a problem, but I thought I had no alternative to an existence with alcohol in it. so I focused on the ‘functioning’ part of the phrase ‘functioning alcoholic’, and pushed on. although I was hemmed in by alcohol on every side, I closed my eyes and kept going.
because I was only drawing on the resources inside my own head. which told me that the options were moderation or the extreme, terrifying options of talking to my doctor (but what if they took away my kids?) or attending AA. which would involve talking to my husband about my problem, which was clearly impossible.
so, my attempts at moderation were painful and short-lived. in my mind if I couldn’t moderate, what could I do? abstinence was too bizarre an option.
so I carried on drinking excessively.
until the pain of drinking was, finally, too much. and the extreme option of not drinking was the only one I hadn’t tried.
and what I did differently, this time, was to leave the boundaries of my own head. that head clouded and fogged with alcohol. I found sober blogs, books, and communities. I reached out to sober penpals who amazingly seemed pleased to hear from me. and all those people told me that it was ok to not be perfect, that it was positively a good idea to ask for help, and to be significantly kinder to myself.
found this great quote today from Jim Rohn which really summed this up:
‘To solve any problem, here are three questions to ask yourself. Firstly, what could I do? Second, what could I read? And third, who could I ask?’
just compare that to all the circular models of problem-solving, like this one:
when you are stuck inside your own head you go round and round that loop. never breaking free. trying the same strategies, but ‘trying harder’ ha ha ha ha ha ha. or if you wise up to realise how pointless that is, trying another strategy. no wine in the week…no spirits…ad infinitum.
but when you join with others in your search for answers – the possibilities are infinite. it is like standing on a hill with arms outstretched, absorbing the energy of the universe.
I cannot believe how powerful this sober looking-glass world has been for me. if you are reading this – whether you are sober, or thinking about being sober – you know that it exists. but if you don’t know the power of it yet, prepare to be amazed. because it can turn your life around and enable you to be capable of things you cannot even imagine right now.
have an amazing weekend, soberverse friends!