Less Is More

The twelve-steppers have a saying that goes, “Let go and let God.” If you’re getting hung up on the G-word in the second part of that saying, don’t fret…we’re here to take a look at the first half. Sometimes doing nothing and getting out of our own way is the best source of action. Most likely you are traveling this path of sobriety because of the things you “do.” It is the action you take that has led you here. By learning how to do less or nothing at all, we will gain a huge advantage against addictive thoughts and behaviors.

Adapt and Improvise

Those who suffer from addiction also suffer from delusions about control. Control is an idea.  It is a bedtime story. It is a warm fuzzy blanket that lets us feel brave and secure from the monsters under the bed. However, control does not exist.  It is a figment of our imaginations. Don’t take our word for it though. Try to control every aspect of your day.  Try to control other people. I think you will soon see, as we did, that control is exhausting, frustrating and fruitless. To live happy, successful lives, we need to learn to let go. We need to adapt and change rather than try to control. Control is not a useful tool in recovery. In contrast, flexibility, adaptability, detachment and meditation ARE useful tools and we will learn how to use them like a master carpenter.

Be Here Now

In one sense and at its roots, addiction can be thought of as the refusal to accept the present moment. It is an attempt to mold the now into something it isn’t. In other words, an attempt to control it. Addicts have a very hard time being fully present in the moment. Now, if your present moment is pleasant, like getting a massage, we have no problem being present fully. It’s when the now is unpleasant that we seek a reversal of this feeling or a way to suppress it. Drugs work marvelously well in this regard. They change the present moment immediately. They are an instant replacement of the now. However, the duration is short and the cost of this solution is very high. We are searching for a long term, low-cost method in dealing with the present and our place within it. 

Spiritual Liberation

The name Carl Jung is familiar to many members of Alcoholics Anonymous, including its founder, Bill Wilson. Jung proposed that the yearning for addictive substances is really a yearning for communion with the higher self or spirit. In essence, he thought of alcoholics as people desperate to have a spiritual experience and only through a process of spiritual enlightenment could the addict emerge as a new person free from the bondage of addiction. He often referred to alcoholics/addicts as “frustrated mystics.”

A New Sheriff in Town

Addiction begins when we throw away our free will and turn it over to our substances of choice. They become our ruler. We want to encourage you to revolt against this dictator. We encourage you to stage a coup in your own mind and elect a new leader. The new leader’s aim will be to spread love, compassion and well-being. Like a good king, this will be the new leader’s aim.