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On Self-Control - by Hank Robb

Old 03-26-2011, 06:40 PM
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On Self-Control - by Hank Robb

Here's the article: SMART RecoveryŽ - On Self Control

I can relate to the article. I was out of control, self or otherwise in active addiction. For the longest time I thought self-control was an inherent ability that I naturally possessed. So when it came time to clean up my act, I had a hard time staying off the dope. I didn't know anything about developing skills that would help me. I just thought getting off drugs was a simple as saying no.

For not giving in to the urge I like to "identify I'm having an urge" and put my mind to task by challenging it. I think of my mind as my friend and not my enemy. The urge is the enemy that I can either put my mind to challenging it or basically watch passively as my mind takes to the urge and runs with it.

Being able to identifying when I'm having an urge takes effort. Otherwise I may have some fleeting or even persistent feeling that is in fact an urge and not recognize that I may be very close to using. Its like I'm happy today and a cold beer would be nice but I cant. Here I still have the connection between an emotion and a drink. When it is I have an urge to drink and being happy or sad or every point in between is, I just want to drink...urge.

Anywho I'm not sure if I made a coherent point or what but there it is. Please feel free to discuss the article and/or my commentary.
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Old 03-26-2011, 07:19 PM
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I heard an interview with the scientist who did the 'one cookie now or two cookies later' study. He said the most fascinating thing was watching the film of the kids alone with the cookies. Some would just matter of factly make the choice, others would torture themselves over the decision, some would choose two cookies later but would get very angry at having to wait. And of course there was the true rule breaker: A little boy took the Oreo apart and licked out just the center part of the creme filling and put the cookie back together - they quit using Oreos after that.

I like the idea that self control is a skill you can build. I probably will always eat the one cookie now, but I am more content with the my choice.
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Old 03-26-2011, 07:26 PM
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Great find Zen. Truthfully when I decided to quit drinking a millions time in a row I didn't have the self control to do it. When I even got serious about trying to really quit during the end I felt completely powerless, and it scared the hell out of me, because I really wanted to quit. I wasn't just making a half -a$$ attempt. As I re evaluated not being able to just stop, is when I realized I had to get information and a plan together. I had to learn self control, and techniques that I would be able to use over and over. As I focused on the techniques and kept sobriety as the number one goal, abstaining went from being very hard the first couple of days to rather easy after a couple of months.

Self control is something that is learned, it is a skill. I think my main problem was thinking that drinking in excess was also a self control issue, which I don't feel it is now. Although on occassion I control it in certain situations, once under the influence I lose the ability to really gage any self contol being that I am under the influence and I truly belive there is a physical aspect that I can't control.

Anyways, get thread starter and great topic.
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Old 03-26-2011, 09:43 PM
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I never really thought about this but in retrospect I was totally out of control in every area of my life when drinking. Now...I've completely changed and it feels really good

Great topic!
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Old 03-27-2011, 05:55 AM
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Great post Zen! Good info to live by. Like LF I had not thought of this idea,Just never thought of self control as being a learned skill. Thanks!
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