I pray that you have all jumped into 2015 with fresh determination and motivation to be a better you. By God’s grace I am having a blessed new year and I believe the best is yet to come.
With that said, let me get right down to it and share with you what is on my mind and heart. I have provided definitions, scenarios, and other information on the art of living sober. Now it’s time for some down-to-earth, bare bones truth. I would consider it a gross disservice for me to share half-truths and fairy tales with you. In my profession, it is imperative that I disseminate facts and not fiction. Living sober is, first and foremost, a choice. That’s right, you either choose to live that way or you choose to live another. It may sound simple, but there are times when it is, and there will certainly be times when it will not be. You see, just because I decide to live differently, life keeps on going; in other words, STUFF STILL HAPPENS. The Universe doesn’t give you a free pass because you make a change; if anything, it may throw a few curve balls your way just to see how serious you are.
All jokes aside, the most important part of choosing to live sober is also making the choice to suit up and show up, no matter what. We all have times in life that require gritting our teeth and bearing it. We call them life experiences, hard times, a valley, the dark, etc, etc. The point is to get to the other side of the life event without returning to any past negative or unproductive behavior. Remember, living sober is about behavior; not drugs, alcohol, sex, food or anything on that exhaustive list of things we substitute for comfort. We can never grow if we never allow ourselves to experience some discomfort. We hunker down, pray, cry, exercise, count to 1,000 or whatever it takes to get through it. And the good news is, we can get through it sober, and breathe a sigh of relief (Ahhhh).
I was once told by a professional motivational speaker that “If you’re not having fun doing it, something is wrong”. I believe that living life sober is something that we need to have fun doing sometimes, or we will be one negative Norma/Norman. I wanted to add some humor to this first column of the New Year, and I pray that it is well received. After all, we have eleven more months to be serious about it, and trust me, we will be.
Peace & Blessings,
Mavis Jackson, Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor