DENIAL AND OTHER OPIATES
“The worst lies are the lies we tell ourselves. We live in denial of what we do, even what we think. We do this because we're afraid.” (Richard Bach)
Any addictive behavior that keeps us from fully living to our highest potential is a denial or an opiate. Some examples are; over shopping, hoarding, self pity, blaming others for unfortunate circumstances, drugs, alcohol, minimizing, religion, television, justification, denial of any cycle of behavior that creates pain and/or suffering. All of us use these, and other coping mechanisms from time to time and that is alright. Getting stuck there is asking to create problems for ourselves as well as for those around us.
One of the reasons we use to make relying on denial and the numbing of our feelings ok, is that we are trying to avoid pain, or our anticipation of it. We lie to ourselves to make it seem like everything is alright. Denial and numbing are normal and natural responses for dealing with painful or overwhelming problems. By using thoughts, actions and manipulation to defend against the pain of realizing the presence of things in our lives that we would rather not face, is just to prolong the inevitable. By sinking into addictive, manipulative or abusive behavior we just create more of what we don’t want, pain, misery and unhappiness. Once we begin to lie to ourselves, we think that we feel a lot more comfortable because we begin to believe that we are in control again. In reality we are not. The same is true of addictive or manipulative behavior. Addiction creates the dependency on the act of addiction we choose. We keep thinking (wrongly) that if we try the behavior one more time, things will get better. Of course they don’t, so we continue our vicious cycle.
The trap with the lying is that, since nothing terrible has happened as a result of lying to ourselves, we kid ourselves into thinking that our lie is now the truth. From here we progress to lying to others and this is where the trouble starts. The actual truth becomes further and further removed from our conscious awareness of what is worthy of us, creating problems within our mind/spirit connection. As this connection deteriorates our physicality gets in on the act. When this occurs, eventually the lies begin to show up as physical problems, aches, pains, illness and the like.
We sometimes see the advantages of denial as; having others feel sorry for us and so they try to ‘help fix’ us so we don’t have to do it, not having to take responsibility for our actions or behavior, not having to face what seems to be a problem with no solution, or not having to deal with a personal short coming.
Some of the disadvantages of using denial are; that it eventually blocks our recognition of our initial problem or flaw so we don’t see what we need to work on to make our life right. Denial and addictive behavior create the illusion that the problem is being solved or that there are more important issues to deal with so that the main issue does not need to be solved, or that it doesn’t exist at all. Denial and obsessive behavior are detrimental to all three levels of our life; body, mind, and spirit. These create the downward spiral that causes dis-ease, as well as an imbalance that will eventually become severe enough to make us ill.
OK, so how do you fix this? Well, dare to be honest with yourself and ask the tough questions. What problems do you truly have in your life, your job, and your relationships? Just where and what do you feel are your weaknesses, flaws or limitations? Are they really things that you can change or control? How long have you been putting these things on the back burner? Which aspects of your self do feel is contributing to these problems? Write them down and then prioritize them by their importance to you.
I caution you here to be loving and gentle with yourself as you ask and answer these questions. It has been your skewed perspective and fear that got you here in the first place so don’t hurt yourself further by being harsh. There is a difference between being truthful and being critical. Look for the good that is in you as you weed out what you want to change. Just understanding that there is work for you to do may be enough to start with. Shining the light of truth into those dark corners may seem scary at first but I tell you that is the most freeing and healing thing you can do for yourself. By keeping yourself in the dark, you are actually putting yourself at risk of your problems getting to the point that secondary ones develop as a result of not addressing your primary issues. It is like taking a pill to reduce a fever without determining what caused the fever in the first place.
Change is possible. It can be done. Your problems can be solved or effectively managed if you choose to take responsibility for your part in creating them and act with conscious awareness to do something about them. The choice to stay unhappy and ill or to become the healthy whole person you were meant to be is yours. Remember that “you cannot solve a problem with the same mind set that created it” (Einstein)
Reach your goal of wholeness.
Bright Blessings, Chessie
© Chessie Roberts, 2011 all rights reserved