Absurdity and Arrogance
There are so many things in our lives we can’t control – the majority of it, actually! The world is a huge place with literally billions of moveable parts, many of which have minds of their own. It’s both absurd and arrogant to think that we can line all of these elements up to suit us. And yet, many of us move though life this way though we often know better. It’s almost as if we willingly buy into this illusion in order to function. This works with varying degrees of success for a while. Inevitably, though, life steps in and reminds us who the real boss is. The illusion of control shatters and we come face to face with unvarnished reality. Tension and anxiety race to the surface and threaten to overwhelm us.
A Level-Headed Response
We’re seeing this happen in real-time under coronavirus. Some folks are protesting the stay-at-home orders, some folks are protesting the protesters, and everyone is sick of being inside. We have written a little bit about the strain that the quarantine is putting on folks struggling with addiction and eating disorders and we’d like to return to the topic. This time, though, we’d like to approach it from a different angle. Many substance abuse and eating disorders spring from feelings of a lack of control. This is what makes the current pandemic so dangerous for these folks. However, many of us in recovery have learned to successfully cope with these feelings. In fact, for a lot of us, it’s second nature by now. I’ve seen some of the most measured and level-headed responses to these uncertain times come from people in recovery. We’d like to share some of those responses here.
Sit With Your Feelings
12-step programs preach that feelings aren’t fact and we agree. We’re not suggesting you act on them. But we are advising to be present with and honor your feelings. Even if they’re irrational, denying their existence will only lead to further problems.
It’s so simple and yet so easily forgotten. When coping with feelings of a loss of control, slowing your breath reminds us of what we can control and slows our heart rate.
Quit the Sleuthing
Bat, pangolin, the governor’s plans…we don’t know. And if we did know, what would it change? Worrying about reasons or trying to predict the future is a lot of work for zero reward.
It releases stress and promotes the release of endorphins, both of which are invaluable in uncertain times.
Focus on Gratitude
If you’re constantly thinking of the flaws or the worst-case scenario, it’s going to color your entire life. Write down five things you’re grateful for every morning. And most of all, remember that the current situation is only temporary.
Build Your Foundation for Success
Ocean Recovery has been successfully treating substance abuse and eating disorders since 2002 and we remain open and committed to our mission during these uncertain times. We offer individual and group counseling, nutritional therapy, yoga, and more. If you or someone you love is struggling with addiction, please consider calling Ocean Recovery today. Our admissions specialists are standing by to help you start building your foundation for success.