I’ve been a bit quiet on the blog lately. Sobriety is good. Life issues pop up, some related to sobriety (mostly emotional sobriety) and some not. I was thinking about the “blog-mute” and considered that it may be a sign of growth. I have considered about writing about some things, even thinking I “needed” to and then just moved on. Maybe I am getting better at letting things go…
Having said that, there is a topic I would like to get out. I assure you that I am no sobriety expert, or know-it-all, and mostly I would like to remind the gentle reader that much of the time the person I most want to hear my message is MYSELF.
I have been hearing something quite often in sobriety blogs and forums lately that I am finding disturbing. It’s quite possible that I have some character defect at play here, I will take at look at that. The number one response I am seeing to people who are struggling, either from others or from themselves, is “Do something nice for yourself” ; “Give yourself a reward”, etc. I do understand that sobriety is hard work, that we need to learn to love ourselves, that at the end of the day sometimes we need to just do whatever in order not to drink, but … I have to question this advice. As alcoholics, haven’t we been selfish and self-centered long enough? Is the answer for someone who is struggling really to feed the “I deserve it” mentality that so many of us exhibited full-stop in our drinking days? I don’t think this is the answer, at least not for me.
So, instead of preaching to you about how it should be – which I don’t really know anyway, maybe you would like to join me in a little experiment. Next time we are disturbed, feeling that we need a reward, that we need to do something for ourselves, that we deserve it; at that time let’s do something for somebody else. If the opportunity presents, maybe we don’t even tell them what we did. If you try this, I would be interested to know what helps you more? Perhaps a good deed for another is the ultimate nice thing that we can do for ourselves.