Saturday, December 31, 2016
12/31/16 (Sat) Eye of the Hurricane
I was reading an article form SMART this morning. There were three things the author talked about that I thought were interesting.
He talked about the "eye of the psychological hurricane" and how it is easier to make rational decisions when you are in the calm eye of the hurricane rather than when you are constantly spinning around the edge.
I can relate to this bc sometimes (many times) I am very reactive as opposed to reflective. I try so hard to not be so sensitive and reactive to everything around me but I do struggle with this. It sounds so peaceful to be in the center, to feel centered, to always base your decisions and therefore actions from this place of calm, rational thought. Drinking keeps me spinning around the edge. When I am drinking, I am definitely hyper, distracted, chaotic in my brain, "spinning around the edge" in a frantic out of control sort of way - just enjoying the spinning bc I don't have to pay attention to anything else. When I have a hangover I am just kind of floating aimlessly around the edge just not paying attention to anything and not caring. I can kind of picture an astronaut in a space suit floating in space without a tether just floating aimlessly and not being able to do anything about it. My house could be a mess, I could have bills to pay, the sun could be shining - I don't care - I just have to get through the day so I can go to bed. I have to find a way to get to the center and stay there.
The author also talked about that you don't have to do something just because your brain wants you to. My brain could be screaming at me to have that drink, to enjoy the evening, to fit in with everyone else, to just unwind, to have fun - but that doesn't mean my feet have to physically walk to the refrigerator - my arm does not have to physically bring the drink to my lips, my mouth does not have to open and accept the poison that is ruining my self worth. As long as I can physically keep myself from actually drinking, my brain will clam down and the craving will pass. I just need to stay in the center of the hurricane and stay calm until the chaos in my brain clams down.
The third idea that the author talked about that made me pause was to do things willingly rather than grudgingly. I know I need to work on this to be happy in sobriety. Tonight when I go to a New Year's Eve party, I need to not drink because I choose to. I know, from my calm center, that I do not want to drink, that it makes me sick, exhausted, depressed, anxious and unhappy. Sure it would make me happy (in a sort of drunk, chaotic, distracted sort of way) right in the moment but it will prevent me from finding that happy (in a peaceful, proud, confident, healthy sort of way) in all the other moments of my life. I choose to not drink, happily, because it is what is best for me. It does not suck. I am happier because I am not drinking and it is my choice. I can't change that I can't drink normally or process any alcohol in my body, but I can choose to not put it in my body and do what makes me healthy and happy in my life.
Here is a link to the article
That place from which we choose by Hank Robb, PhD, ABPP