This guy Dr. Glen Doyle just rocks. He is a licensed psychologist, founder and director of the Doyle Practice in Chicago and DC, and author of the self-development blog, useyourdamnskills.com. Sign up – I think you’ll like it as much as I do.
Taking control of the situation internally – that’s what you do when choosing sobriety. In my case anyway. In the reading I’ve been doing there are people who are so far into the grip of alcoholism that others have to intervene and take control, before handing control back to the individual.
I feel blessed and lucky that I have taken control of this myself; but sometimes it just feels like time stands still – and each day of sobriety takes FOREVER to tick over.
Dr.Doyle’s post so eloquently addresses this: The Zen of the Grind. I recommend you read the entire blog post, I selected two sections that jumped out and bit me… and have helped me TODAY … and going forward.
“When we’re in recovery, it’s day after day after day of not doing the one thing we actually want to do— just to add one more day onto our “days clean” total after another excruciating twenty four hours. It often begs the very legitimate question of why we gave up our substance of choice in the first place, if feeling like THIS is our reward.”
and also this …
“We need to CREATE motivation from inside— and the only way we can do that is to use the magnificent mind we’re all equipped with in ways that are creative, and which serve our long-term goals.
We need to remember that playing make-believe isn’t just for children. Using our imaginations and our capacity to visualize is vital to our ability to stay focused and motivated when reinforcement isn’t plentiful in the environment around us…and, as it turns out, our magnificent minds are extremely potent tools when it comes to manufacturing motivation from within.
In our minds, we can fast-forward and experience the benefit from a long-term goal right now.
In our minds, we can experience what it’s like to be free of a habit we’re struggling every day to kick.
In our minds, we can enjoy the feeling of being one year sober, five years sober, twenty years sober— even if we’re struggling to achieve our first twenty-four hours substance free.
In our minds, we can imagine the look on the faces of our biggest critics when we actually achieve what we set out to achieve.
I’ll let you in on a little secret we psychologists know: MOST of the motivation we’ll ever experience is created as pictures and sounds and stories in our heads. It may sound silly when I tell you to “play make believe,” but the fact is, we’re already playing make believe ALL THE TIME.
Your ability to imagine and visualize is your secret weapon in a world where reinforcement for our long-term projects is often hard to come by.
Use your secret weapon.
Use it creatively.
Use it on purpose.
And most importantly: use it OFTEN.”