Category: Changing Dis-Empowering Beliefs

Choice Can Be An Illusion

 

It’s An Illusion

I’ve been writing recently, a lot about beliefs, and how everyone has a choice on what they believe. But then I  started to wonder why, I continued to choose beliefs that didn’t serve me, even if it’s only for a few days. I then realized that the choice of beliefs is an illusion to a lot of people, and here’s why.

Be Aware

In order to make a choice about a belief a person must first be
enlightened. By enlightened I simply mean, being aware that you are not
your mind. That the voice you hear is the conditioned mind, which is the
result of your past history and the cultural mindset you inherited.

The Habitual Mind

Breaking the bond of this mind-identification is key in being able to make
rational choices about the beliefs we hold, otherwise we unconsciously
choose beliefs that conform to our habitual mind.

Psychological Time

The habitual mind lives in psychological time of a past and a future,
constantly judging the present by comparing it to past patterns and
projecting future outcomes. Unconsciously the habitual mind seeks to
recreate what it knows and is familiar with.

Repeats The Past

If your past history and cultural mindset are of an egocentric and
self-sabotage nature, your doomed to repeat them. The habitual mind
always wants to adhere to the known and will attract and manifest
whatever corresponds to its inner state. The conditioned mind runs the
show.

Stay Conscious

No one consciously chooses dysfunction,
it’s our inability to stay conscious and focused on the present that
leads to the poor choices. Choice requires consciousness, without it we
suffer.

As always, thanks for visiting. Dave

 

Watch What You Believe

Who Told you that?

What is a belief and how do we come to
believe? Often it can be a ridiculous comment or something you read,
that resonates with something in your subconscious mind. If you want to
start evaluating some of your beliefs, look at your behaviors.

Look at your Behaviors.

If your impatient, it’s because you believe it will help you get what
you want sooner. If you complain, it’s because you believe it helps you
feel better about things you can’t change. If your defiant, it’s because
you believe it works to solve problems. If your a critic, it’s because
you believe you need to compare yourself to others. If your envious,
it’s because you believe what you have is not enough. If your jealous
it’s because you don’t believe in love.

Do you believe these lies?

  • You can see the Great Wall of China from space.
  • Older elephants near death don’t go off searching for the elephant graveyard.
  • Bulls are not enraged by the color red.
  • Dogs don’t sweat by salivating.
  • Lemmings don’t engage in mass suicide.
  • Bats are not blind.
  • Ostriches don’t stick their head in the sand when frightened.
  • Earthworms don’t become two when cut in half.
  • House flies live 20 to 30 days not 24 hours.
  • Poinsettias are not toxic to humans or cats.
  • Computers running Mac are not immune to malware.
  • Waking sleepwalkers doesn’t harm them.
  • Eating less than an hour before swimming doesn’t increase your chances of drowning.
  • Shaving doesn’t cause hair to grow back thicker.
  • Hair and nails don’t continue to grow after death.
  • Sugar does not cause hyperactivity.
  • Alcohol does not kill brain cells.
  • Obesity is not related to a slower metabolism.
  • Sex before a sporting event is not detrimental to performance.
  • Vaccines do not cause autism.
  • People do not use only 10% of their brain.
  • Stress plays a minor role in hypertension.
  • Diamonds are not formed from compressed coal.

Conclusion:

A lot of what we believe is wrong, especially when it comes to what we
think about ourselves. Once you become aware that a lot of what you
believe is wrong, you can start to change the belief. But awareness come
first, and often times it never comes at all. If you’ve become aware
that some of what you believe is wrong, you’ve been given a gift. The
gift of self-awareness is precious and can open the door to a whole new
you. It’s your choice if you walk through or not.

As always, thanks for visiting. Dave

 

 

 

 

 

Who Told you that? What do you Believe?

Who Told you that?

What is a belief and how do we come to believe? Often it can be a
ridiculous comment or something you read, that resonates with something
in your subconscious mind. If you want to start evaluating some of your
beliefs, look at your behaviors.

Look at your Behaviors

If your impatient, it’s because you believe it will help you get
what you want sooner. If you complain, it’s because you believe it helps
you feel better about things you can’t change. If your defiant, it’s
because you believe it works to solve problems. If your a critic, it’s
because you believe you need to compare yourself to others. If your
envious, it’s because you believe what you have isn’t enough. If your
jealous it’s because you don’t believe in love.

Do you believe these lies?

  • You can see the Great Wall of China from space.
  • Older elephants near death don’t go off searching for the elephant graveyard.
  • Bulls are not enraged by the color red.
  • Dogs don’t sweat by salivating.
  • Lemmings don’t engage in mass suicide.
  • Bats are not blind.
  • Ostriches don’t stick their head in the sand when frightened.
  • Earthworms don’t become two when cut in half.
  • House flies live 20 to 30 days not 24 hours.
  • Poinsettias are not toxic to humans or cats.
  • Computers running Mac are not immune to malware.
  • Waking sleepwalkers doesn’t harm them.
  • Eating less than an hour before swimming doesn’t increase your chances of drowning.
  • Shaving doesn’t cause hair to grow back thicker.
  • Hair and nails don’t continue to grow after death.
  • Sugar does not cause hyperactivity.
  • Alcohol does not kill brain cells.
  • Obesity is not related to a slower metabolism.
  • Sex before a sporting event is not detrimental to performance.
  • Vaccines do not cause autism.
  • People do not use only 10% of their brain.
  • Stress plays a minor role in hypertension.
  • Diamonds are not formed from compressed coal.

Conclusion

A lot of what we believe is wrong, especially when it comes to what
we think about ourselves. Once you become aware that a lot of what you
believe is wrong, you can start to change the belief. But awareness come
first, and often times it never comes at all. If you’ve become aware
that some of what you believe is wrong, you’ve been given a gift. The
gift of self-awareness is precious and can open the door to a whole new
you. It’s your choice if you walk through or not.

As always, thanks for visiting. Dave

 

 

 

Placebo Effect Research

Beliefs

Belief is the oldest medicine known to man. Today
scientists are beginning to see The Placebo Effect as a window into the
Neurochemical Mechanisms, that connect the mind with the body. It’s my
hypothesis that this affect plays a much larger role than just how the
body deals with pain and disease, but can also affect our beliefs, and
our abilities to change our lives. If by creating expectations, our
minds have the power to change and eliminate chronic physical diseases,
than doesn’t it follow, that we should also be able to change chronic
mental beliefs, that hold us back from living truly self-fulfilling
lives.

The Importance of Theater

Humans have
participated in Theater since the beginning of time. First it was the
Shaman and the Chiefs, who just like good performers are able to draw us
in, until we feel they are real, they too would go to great lengths to
create a Theater to draw us in. Nothing has changed today, as we observe
what great lengths people go to create Theaters, like Medicine (
Hospitals), Law (Courts), Religion (Church), Finance (Banks), and even
Health (Gyms). All designed to create expectations in our minds, to draw
us into believing, what they are selling.

Are we Tricking the Mind

We need to look at the Placebo Effect as being a loose family of different phenomena, consisting of the following components.

  • Time; It’s irrelevant
  • Create a Confirmation Bias; Changing the focus, paying attention to signs of improvement
  • Hawthorne Effect; changing of behaviors when you know you are being watched
  • Expectations; raised because you surrounded by believers and fellow travelers
  • Learning; Seeing others progress through following proscribed steps, seeing others become proficient or skilled
  • Social Learning; Learn to associate success by taking actions
  • Human Connection; The intangibles like warmth and empathy of others, sense of community makes people feel better
  • Communication; Duration of interaction and the communication of positive expectations
  • Show Progress; reward and acknowledge every milestone

The
least understood aspect of Placebo Effect reseach, is how environment
and the rituals and encounters that are designed to change our
experiences, actually change our subjective view of the world. It comes
down to what our beliefs are about success and failure, what they mean
to each individual. And though many don’t believe it will work, they
still unconsciously expect it to.

Scientists Don’t Know

The
fact is, that there exists beyond ourselves, and our consciousness, a
powerful force that we can tap into, if we believe strongly enough, in
ourselves. By being patient with ourselves, to be willing to learn, and
to challenge long established mental paradigms about ourselves and our
capabilities, we will suddenly realize, that we have it in our power, to
do whatever we want. Enjoy the journey, look at each problem like a
puzzle, and you’ll be amazed at what you can do.

As always, thanks for visiting. Dave

 

 

 

 

The 12 Steps of Recovery; Why they need to be changed

12 Steps of Recovery

The first 3 Steps of the 12 Steps of recovery are a real problem, and need to be updated. In an earlier blog, I talked about the formation of dis-empowering beliefs, and at the foundation, are the very first beliefs, we form about the nature of the Universe, and whether it’s nurturing or threatening. It’s often said in “meetings” that it’s the spiritual hole within us that leads us to addiction. This spiritual hole has at its start, the dis-empowering belief that the Universe is a threatening and unfriendly place so it must follow that God doesn’t care about us. This one foundation belief about the Universe, has created multiple ancillary beliefs, even about God, that support and strengthen it.

The Seeds of Addiction

The more dis-empowering beliefs we have the more irritable and discontent we become, often at a very early age. It is these feelings of irritability and discontent that are the seeds to addiction. We either search or find by accident a medicine that gives us relief from these feelings. And because of our inability to delay gratification we abuse our medicine until we form an allergy to it. The allergy of can’t stop.

The Problem with Step 1

This brings me to the 12 Steps and the problem (as I see it) with the first 3 Steps. Step 1 states, “We admitted we were powerless over alcohol and our lives had become unmanageable”. While a new person coming in contact with these steps for the first time might not have a problem understanding being powerless over their drug of choice, it’s the “and our lives had become unmanageable”, where the problem occurs, especially if they are high bottom people who still have responsible jobs, families, houses and cars. If we just change the word “lives” with “thinking” it would be so much easier for new people to get their arms around this key point. It is so much easier to get into a dialogue about someones thinking being screwed up as opposed to trying to explain a life, that from the outside looks pretty good, as being unmanageable. To focus on the idea that it’s our thinking that creates our lives and it’s this thinking that has become unmanageable.

The Problem with Step 2

Step 2 states,” Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity”. This step is vague and misleading and insinuates that we need is an idea of God to recover. It would be easier to understand if it said “Came to believe that it’s only through outside help that we can be restored to sanity”. The point being that a sick mind, can’t fix a sick mind.

The Problem with Step 3

But it’s in Step 3 where most of the confusion lies. “Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood him”. It’s this statement that insinuates that it’s only through putting the solution outside ourselves that we can find the solution, when the solution clearly lies within us. We need to make a decision to stop blaming the Universe and God for our problems, but to instead look inward on why we believe we are powerless over our own lives. It should read “Made a decision to learn and understand our Gods will for us”By changing the wording even a layman can discuss the fundamental ideas of a divine mind made in the image of our creator, who placed us in a Universe designed to grow man. This eliminates a “sponsor” quandary of trying to explain what turning your will and your life over to God means or looks like.

If They Would Have Just Told Me

If someone had just told me back in 1989, that the reason my life was unmanageable, was because of the dis-empowering beliefs I held, about the Universe and life in general, and it was these beliefs that were making me miserable, I would have been much better off. If they had just told me, that my drug use was only a symptom, of a serious thinking problem, I’d been much better off. And that one of the best ways to find a cure, was to find someone, who had recovered, from the same thinking problems I had. Instead, I went on a quest to find God, alone.

We can Change our Beliefs

The most affordable way to do this today is still, to find a community of men and women who have recovered from this seemingly hopeless state of mind and body. And that all you need (and this is crucial) is a willingness to listen. You don’t have to be like me and spend years as a dry drunk because you can’t figure out how to turn your life and will over to the care of a God, I didn’t even know. Telling someone with Narcissistic Personality Disorder, that they need to turn their thinking over to someone else, as opposed to taking responsibility for it, is wrong. It’s through showing them, how their dis-empowering beliefs, create the life they find themselves in. That they have free will, and can change both their beliefs and their lives.

Stuck in the Past

These Steps of Recovery were written almost a 100 years ago, nobody today would suggest using a “textbook” written 100 years ago to teach people today. To insist that this is the bible of recovery is to be caught in a form of Narcissism, to ignore the development of new ideas and advances in science, medicine and psychology and to adopt them to an ever-changing world is a dis-empowering belief system that continues to accept falling recovery rates.

It’s Simple

What can be easier to understand than this simple concept. It’s our thinking that is the cause of our lives (the effect). Our divine mind has free will to believe anything we choose. The Universe was provided to grow Man and produce what ever we plant. It can do no less. Gods will is for Man to prosper and be happy.

As always, thanks for visiting. Dave

 

 

 

 

The Causes of Alcoholism; Who you going to trust?

What’s better Study or Experience?

Who would you trust? Someone who has studied painting for 30 years or somebody who has painted for 30 years? Someone who has studied dancing for 30 years or someone who has danced for 30 years? Someone who has studied alcoholism for 30 years or someone who had been alcoholic for 30 years? Someone who has studied recovery or someone who has recovered? They’re people out there, that believe something because they have studied it, then there are those that believe because they know.

Beliefs; Subjective or Objective

While to believe is good there are levels of belief, both subjective and objective. The belief gained through study is subjective, and the belief gained through experience is objective. You can trust the belief gained through education but you can have faith in the belief gained through experience. What is stronger trust or faith?

Faith vs Trust

If you have lived with dis-empowering beliefs for 30 years, like I have you can have faith that I know, as opposed to someone who has studied dis-empowering beliefs for 30 years. They may trust they know but they don’t have faith that they know. The arrogance of people with education and a lot of letters behind their names never cease to amaze me. The egos of these people, is only surpassed by how wrong they have been, about so many things, they believed they knew.

Can you Trust the Experts?

We laugh today at what the “experts” told us was true only 50 years ago. History has shown us this over and over. Often at the determent to the population at large. Yet the “experts” never stop pontificating about something they trust to be true. Simply because they have studied the problem, only to be proven wrong by someone who has lived the problem, and who was brave enough to talk or write about it.

The Hubris

When I hear or read about an “expert” telling the world that alcoholism is an incurable disease, I’m struck by the hubris of the statement, I wonder how, without really living it, they can be so sure of themselves. Without any regard to who it hurts, when they spread these dis-empowering beliefs, into the public arena. Unless you’ve lived it you don’t really know, well I know.

A Life of Alcoholism

I’ve lived around alcoholism my whole life and have suffered with it for 30 years. It has affected every aspect of my life. It has been responsible for killing three careers, two marriages and the relationship with my children, and I know hundreds of other people who have experienced the same and even worse. What I’ve also seen is hundreds of people who have successfully recovered from this seemingly hopeless state of mind and body, and I’m one of them. When I read that its incurable I look in the mirror and ask what do they know? Am I a lie?

The Motivation is Money

Are these “experts” going to tell me I can’t trust my own experiences? That a person can’t have faith that not only is recovery from alcoholism possible but attainable. Again what are the motivations behind anyone telling people that alcoholism is incurable. I’m here to tell everyone that alcoholism can be cured, and you don’t have to attend meetings for the rest of your life to accomplish it. Recovery can occur quite quickly, if we started to focus on the root cause as opposed to just looking at the effects.

It’s Narcissism

Nobody likes to admit they are Narcissistic. And this is the whole problem, nobody will admit it. The condition of Narcissism by its very nature is to deny, deflect and misdirect attention elsewhere. The Narcissist manipulates the situation in such a way that blame can never be placed where it belongs. It’s like this mental illness’s mantra is call me anything, but don’t call me narcissistic. Well the jig is up’ the cats out of the bag.

Attend 90 in 90, see for yourself

Anybody who has seriously read the symptoms and behaviors of Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD) only has to attend 90 in 90 to be thoroughly convinced that its this, mental illness, that is not only behind alcoholism but is the root cause behind most addictions today. The third step prayer in A.A. especially asks God to remove “the bondage of self”. And NPD in its pure form is the bondage of self.

It’s the Beliefs you Hold

Being stuck with the dis-empowering beliefs, that convince us, that we are separate, alone and victims in a hostile universe, makes us so unhappy, and discontent that we either actively search for relief or find it by accident. And the medicine that’s been most easily found, since forever, has been alcohol, but it certainly is’nt the only medication people turn too.

Dismay Recovery Rates

It’s my opinion that this obsession of the mind, is the mental illness called Narcissistic Personality Disorder. The sooner we start to realize this and bring it the attention it deserves, the sooner we will see an improvement in the dismal recovery rates we continue to see. Only through a psychic change that I finally experienced in Step 11, have I become willing to show my own vulnerabilities and have the confidence to start speaking out.

Check it Out

I encourage anyone reading this, that if you or someone you know ,is suffering from an addiction, of any kind, that you look at NPD. Our beliefs create our thinking. Our thinking leads to behaviors and emotions and creates the life we live. Once we realize, we are not our thoughts, then we can start the healing process. My blogs will cover all kinds of dis-empowering beliefs and shine the light empowerment upon them. I look forward to any comments you may have and welcome them. It’s only through open and honest communication that we can pull back the curtain. Once, your aware, there is no going back. Enjoy the journey.

As always, thanks for visiting. Dave

 

 

 

 

 

Want to Quiet the Noise in Your Mind?

Here are somethings I’ve started to try that have helped me, maybe they will help you to.

  1. Start listening to Classical music when you drive. Classical music has been proven to be the only form of music that engages both sides of the mind, ensure you listen to it at low volume.
  2. Cancel the local Newspaper. Being a subscriber for years and years I thought that this would be a daunting task, what I found instead is that I didn’t become so emotionally tied to things, if I didn’t

    know about them. I realized that I didn’t need my finger on the pulse of everything that was happening around the city and in the country. If it’s of real importance it would find it’s way to me.

  3. Monitor my TV, if you have a DVR record what you want to watch. Try to eliminate all commercials. Never channel surf and remove the TV from the bedroom and never go to sleep with the TV on.
  4. Go to the local park and just walk for thirty to forty minutes every day.
  5. Start reading the books you’ve been putting off for years, especially before going to bed.
  6. Listen to white noise audio while sleeping, start a dream journal.
  7. Take a sauna or steam three times a week
  8. Start exercising thirty to forty minutes three times a week
  9. Stop the negative mind talk, be impeccable with your work

As always, thanks for visiting, Dave

 

 

 

 

 

What Causes Alcoholism

Just Because It’s in Google Doesn’t Mean it’s True

If you what to find out about Alcoholism, don’t always look to Google for the answer. The other day I typed Alcoholism into Google, and the first listing on page 1 was the Mayo Clinic. This is their definition of Alcoholism, “a chronic disease, characterized by uncontrolled drinking, and a preoccupation with alcohol”. Then right underneath in bold letters is written very common, “more then 3 million cases a year”.They follow this with the LIE, “treatment can help, but this condition can’t be cured”.

Alcoholism 4th Preventable Cause of Death

Number 2 on page 1 is Medlineplus.gov which talks about how 18 million adults have an Alcohol Use Disorder, (AUD), which they characterize as not being physically dependent, but still a serious problem. AUD has three levels mild, moderate and severe. Number 3 on page 1 is Alcoholrehabguide.org that writes, “88,000 people die each year from alcohol related causes. That it’s the 4th leading preventable cause of death in America”. They go on to state, “Alcohol abuse is treatable and that there are a number of Rehab Facilities that specialize in Alcohol Addiction Programs and Therapies”. They than go on to list the common factors why people turn to Alcohol.

  1. Relieve Stress
  2. Feel good
  3. Cope with loss
  4. Overcome anxiety

Confusion, is it curable or not?

Is it any wonder, that there is so much confusion and misunderstanding, about an addiction, that has been around since Man first crushed grapes. The Mayo Clinic says it’s not curable, without giving any reasons why. The Rehab site says it’s curable, and gives simplistic and inaccurate reasons about what causes alcoholism.

Mental Illness is the Root Cause of Addictions

These sites obviously have different agendas, my question is why none of these sites, state what millions of people know, that the addiction to alcohol is simply an allergy of the body caused by a mental obsession of the mind, and that millions have recovered from this seemingly hopeless state of mind and body. It’s known now that almost all addictions are caused by mental illness, and the sooner we get consistency from the “experts” about the role mental obsessions play in addiction, the sooner we can help more people find relief.

Narcissistic Personality Disorder

It is my Hypothesis that almost all Addictions are the direct result of the mental disease called Narcissistic Personality Disorder, (NPD). This disorder was first diagnosed in 1985 as an incurable mental illness. After, further study this diagnosis was modified in 1990. It was determined that NPD could be cured with intensive psychological therapies, but if left untreated NPD would progress to Malignant Narcissism (MN), for which there is no cure. This has been the experts opinion for almost 30 years, and yet no one seems willing to place NPD as the root cause of Alcoholism and most other addictions.

Change Dis-Empowering Beliefs

It’s the intent of this Website, to try to change the misconceptions we have about addiction and other dis-empowering beliefs that hold us back from dreaming.

As always, thanks for visiting. Dave

 

 

 

 

 

The Cause of Addictions; The Bondage of Self

It Starts with your Beliefs

Depending on how functional or dysfunctional our childhoods where, we all develop some Narcissistic Beliefs, looking at the world from a me first perspective. If these beliefs are of an Ancillary nature, than most of us grow out of this form of Early Narcissism. But if the Narcissistic Beliefs are of a Fundamental nature, where we perceive the Universe outside ourselves as dangerous, hostile, confusing and un-nurturing, than the Narcissistic thinking becomes a habit and eventually starts to infect other fundamental aspects of our belief systems.

The Habitual Mind Takes your Beliefs and

If you are filled with anxiety, anger, depression, irritability and discontent and are having problems, forming normal fulfilling relationships, and have also developed an addiction to something, you might want to look at your belief systems. The Habitual Mind is hardwired to see only what it believes. The UN-Conscious mind is working 24/7 to manifest these beliefs into your life. It’s constantly looking, non-stop for validation, association and comparisons, that support the beliefs it holds. It does this year after year, for decades slowly grinding down our self-worth, self-confidence and self-trust.

As we internalize these dis-empowering beliefs we start to develop an emotional dependence upon them rather than becoming independent of them. We begin to believe that the world revolves us and we start to become trapped in the  “bondage of self”. If this is allowed to happen, than the Early Narcissism evolves into a Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD). We unconsciously, internalized these dis-empowering beliefs, and without being aware of it, we pass them on to those around us. Some of the most obvious dis-empowering beliefs are.

  • That we have the power to control how others feel, this in turn reinforces the fear of rejection and disapproval we have towards others. Because of these fears, honesty usually takes a back seat to pleasing. We avoid dealing with conflicts and have problems forming true connections through intimacy or any real genuine feelings of love.
  • That rules are more important than our needs or people. Putting rules ahead of people and ourselves, elevates the importance of obedience and compliance, this leads to an over all lack of empathy, especially if you v’e broken any rules.

Our Beliefs Become Us

Once these beliefs are established, we become oblivious to them, if challenged we either are unwilling or unable to suffer the pain of even acknowledging, much less changing them. How can we give up our personality, these well-established patterns of behavior, developed over a lifetime. If anyone thinks they can’t, I’m here to tell you anyone can, if they are willing to do the work.

You Can Change Your Beliefs

It takes more than a desire, to change, it takes a strong will and the ability to take action. But if the pain of not changing has become strong enough, than there are resources, available to show anyone how.

  • First, we must realize how unmanageable our thinking has become.
  • Second, we must understand that our lives are the effects of that thinking, not the cause.
  • Third, that we have never been the victim.
  • Fourth,everything that has happened, needed to happen, to get us here.
  • Fifth, our character defects are only our beliefs in action.
  • Sixth, list out the defects in order of importance. It’s by looking at our character defects that we can begin to change.
  • Seven, pick a behavior and the dis-empowering belief behind it and stop doing it.

Change Them One At A Time

Remain aware of it and focus on it until it’s removed, than go to the next. A wholesale onslaught of all your defects will only lead you feeling overwhelmed and eventually so frustrated you’ll give up. Taking them one by one and watching how your life starts to change, will only encourage you to continue.

Because You Know You Don’t Know

Because we are willing to admit, that something is wrong with our thinking, there is still hope at affecting change, either individually or with group therapy. Experts agree, that Narcissistic Personality Disorder is a progressive mental illness. If left untreated it will progress into a more malevolent, vindictive and vengeful stage known as Malignant Narcissism, for which there is no cure. What they seem unwilling to agree upon is that NPD is much more common in society, and as I maintain, the root of almost all addictions.

As always, thanks for visiting. Dave

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I Was a Dry Drunk

Recovering from Addiction is easy, just quit, its how a majority of people do it. Of the estimated 14 million adult Americans who are deemed Alcoholic, less then 10 percent of them will be seeking help at any given time. Of those 10 percent, 70 percent won’t achieve lasting sobriety. Seventy percent of those who achieve sobriety in A.A. will relapse in five years. The relapse rate for one year are even higher. With this being said its safe to say that there are a lot of Dry Drunks walking among us, and for ten years I was one of them,. I want to tell you what that experience taught me.

What is a Dry Drunk

In doing research for this article I was struck about what I found when I Googled, Dry Drunk, every entry on the first page of Google was written by a Treatment Center, and I found the information to be either misleading, confusing or just plain wrong. In a lot of cases they just describe the symptoms that cause people to seek relief in the first place. A rehash of the reasons a person is driven to drink, not an explanation of what a Dry Drunk is. And in every post there is the underlying suspicion that what the article’s real intent is to sell you something.

So let me make this simple for everybody, a Dry Drunk is a person who attempts to get and stay sober without the help of a program. A “lone wolf”, convinced that a program has nothing to offer and that through sheer self will alone, they can beat this affliction of Mind and Body, commonly called an Addiction. That’s why you see a majority of people who have quit on their own and are supposedly “sober” are still not happy or satisfied with their lives. They are under the illusion, that just quitting their drug of choice is sufficient for recovery from a hopeless state of mind and body. Because they don’t know what they don’t know, they are unaware that the drug only masks, the real problem.

Thinking and Behaving Alcoholically without Drinking

Not being able to understand specifically, the first three steps of the 12 Step program, I decided that I could be a lone wolf and recover on my own. Though my life got better on a materialistic level, I didn’t get better. As a matter of fact, mentally and spiritually I got worse. I remained stuck in the “Bondage of Self”. Even without using, my drug of choice, I was constantly finding myself thinking and behaving alcoholically.

Simply quitting without looking into the causes of why your an Addict, is like an Ostrich burying its head in the sand, it might make you feel better, but its going to help you. At this point I didn’t even have a concept of the term “Bondage of Self”, and that’s a real big problem.

Recovery takes work

If your convinced you want to recover on your own, that’s fine millions have done it. We are all alone with our thoughts, and it’s by going inside your thoughts, that you can begin to fix, why you think the way you do. A.A. stresses that recovery is outside ourselves, that we are powerless, and that only through turning our life and our will over to a Higher Power can we hope to be healed. Lack of Power was my dilemma, and as long as I continued to believe in powerlessness I would be powerless. Our lives are the effect of our thinking, we must go inside, not outside ourselves. For its the beliefs, we hold inside, that have created our life outside.

You need to start your journey, for long term recovery and sobriety, by doing more than just quitting the drug. We need to get into the causes. Today its easier than its ever been to find people that have made the journey your embarking on. Realizing that our journey is not unique and that there are many ways in which you can reach our destination. But the journey, to any destination, takes action.

What Happens if you Do No Work

When I quit, I thought, that would be enough. What I found instead was that my dis-empowering beliefs only used my quitting to become stronger. Where I had been critical and judgmental of others who didn’t drink like me before, well now it included everyone. Looking down my nose, with contempt and disdain, “look I quit, why can’t you?”. Constantly watching each and every drink anyone took, sensitive to the slightest change in personality, judging peoples outsides by my insides. Feeling angry but superior at the same time.

Everyone of my character defects were being reinforced by my abstention. I developed a whole new level of martyrdom. Instead of feeling “less than” I constantly felt “more than”. Hyper sensitive and critical at the same time. Impatient with others, constantly complaining and lying the whole time about how I really felt. These habitual thoughts became my constant companions and I almost came to welcome them, like old friends.

Recovery Based on an Illusion

Unfocused will power is as damaging as no will power. To live in the “Bondage of Self” constantly feeding and congratulating my ego (my false self) about how strong and superior I was, to be able to quit on my own, with no help and without doing any work. A recovery based on illusion.

Living in this illusion for years, eventually lead to the creation of another illusion. Slowly with the help of my ego I began to convince my unconscious mind that I wasn’t even an Addict. That it had all been a mistake. Because of my unwillingness to do any work, to even attempt to look for the root causes of my irritability and discontent, my recovery was based on a foundation of sand.

How Much Work Does it Take

In the 30s low bottom drunks were taken through the steps in a matter of days, today that would seem to be impossible. The reason I bring this up, is that the work, of uncovering the root causes, of an addiction, don’t have to take a lifetime. Finding quality sobriety doesn’t have to entail going to meetings for the rest of your life. What it does entail, is a willingness to understand that its our beliefs about the Universe and ourselves, that are the root cause of our thinking. It’s empowering to believe we have the capacity to become unconsciously competent, to have the ability, to know what we know. To believe differently is dis-empowering, and creates a lack of power.

As always, thanks for visiting. Dave

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