When Your Dreams Turn To Dust; Vacuum

There was a time that we had many dreams. As we imbibed on our drug of choice, we waxed poetic on all of the things we were going to do, all of the places we were going visit, and all of the things were were going to acquire. Our hopes and dreams were never dashed, because we never even made the effort to take the first step towards their actualization. In a perverse sort of way, this behavior insured that our dreams would forever remain just that, dreams. Everything stayed in a state of potentiality.
In sobriety, we also have dreams. The difference is that we take actions to begin in their fulfillment. Sometimes we have the pleasure of having a dream come true. We save up for that special vacation or finally ask out that co-worker. It feels wonderful knowing that we made the effort to turn our dream into reality. Sometimes though, we take the steps to fulfill a dream, and it evaporates right before our eyes. Had that happened while we were drinking or drugging, we probably would have gone into a tailspin. Now, we know better. If a dream falls through, just create another one.

Personal Reflection: How do I cope with broken dreams?

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Self-Pity Is Your Worst Enemy

There is no doubt that life can be very hard. On an almost daily basis we have to face many challenges. Some of them we know will arise and to some extent be planned for. For many of life’s other challenges, their occurrence is largely out of our hands. Self-pity has often been our immediate response to these travails of daily life.

In the program, we are often advised to “get off the pity pot”. When things “happened to us” our default response was self-pity. Initially we might have justified this reaction with a statement like, “if you had my life, you’d feel bad for yourself too”. The problem with self-pity is that it ultimately works against us. It creates inertia to change. When we are on that pity pot, it becomes doubly hard to move out of our feelings of despair and attend to whatever the challenge is. In self-pity, we kick the can further down the road and ultimately only exacerbate the problem; still needing to deal with it at a later date. There is tremendous power in not buying into self-pity. Instead of going there, we need to take an action instead.

Personal Reflection: How does self-pity work against me in my life?