Fear, Part II: Champagne Problems
The truth is that our finest moments are most likely to occur when we are feeling deeply uncomfortable, unhappy, or unfulfilled. For it is only in such moments, propelled by our discomfort, that we are likely to step out of our ruts and start searching for different ways or truer answers. -Unknown
I had the opportunity, since yesterday, to turn around my thinking with respect to the current fear in my life, and I always feel accomplished when I can achieve these kinds of mental battles. In the past, I could not even recognize my negative thought patterns for what they were, and now, to not only do I recognize them, but I can rebut them and win the battle, which is a true gift.
So another way to look at fear, or any kind of hardship in your life, is to compare it against past, more difficult obstacles you have faced, and see how they compare. Or, to look at the world in general and see how your problems stack up against what the world at large is facing. You see, just as recently as a few months ago, I was facing problems I thought I could not overcome: I was losing my marriage, my home life, and, in a very real sense, my freedom. In 144 short days, I was able, through the miracle of a family babysitting offer, to have a wonderful date night with that same husband last night.
Five months ago, I truly did not believe I had the strength to overcome my personal demon, addiction. I truly did not believe I had the capacity to be honest with anyone, including myself… I wasn’t even sure I knew what honesty looked like. Today, I am genuinely proud, and even a little awestruck, of the things I have managed to accomplish in 144 days. And if I can do all of that, then really, what can’t I face? Certainly not the comparatively small issues that trouble me today. The kind of issues I face today are what are known as “champagne problems” in recovery… yes, they are irritating, and maybe worrisome, but they are nothing compared to problems facing someone in active addiction. And when they trouble me, because everyone in life has troubles of some kind, I have the added bonus of the toolkit I have gained in recovery… I know what I have to do to face any kind of hardship in life. So, while addiction has caused some of my problems, addiction has also given me the fantastic resources I now have to solve any problem in life.
And now, I can walk out of my house, face my fear, and know with certainty I am going to come out stronger on the other side… stay tuned!