Friday, December 28, 2007

Complacency

Defined:
1. A feeling of contentment or self-satisfaction, especially when coupled with an unawareness of danger, trouble, or controversy.
2. An instance of contented self-satisfaction.


I’m not sure why that word bothers me….maybe because..so often, in recovery, it is associated with fear?

As in…‘Whatever I do…I must not get complacent.’

I remember feeling that way myself.

And..it’s understandable….I mean….if I return to gambling – geez…everything just falls apart…I LOSE MYSELF when I am in the cycle…I LOSE WHO I AM…the ESSENCE of me is suppressed…

And when that happens…I am in danger of losing everything that is precious to me….so…yes…fear is very understandable.

But it’s not the way that I want to live.

So….how would one go about this…this…not living in fear…yet not falling into ‘complacency’ and returning to the cycle?

I imagine that becoming complacent can happen in many different ways.

For me…the further away I was from the pain…from the desperation…the less real..the less INTENSE it felt.

Sort of like child-birth.

I mean..you remember that it hurt..but as time goes by…it seems that it didn’t hurt all THAT bad (ha!) so you decide to have another baby.

Also…as my consequences diminished…that..coupled with hearing others…whose consequences were far more dire than mine had ever been…I began thinking ‘maybe I wasn’t THAT bad’ and ‘perhaps I exaggerated how big a problem I had’….again…time was my enemy.

And….I stopped attending g.a. meetings (because I was fine..I had no desire to gamble)…and I had no other resources at the time…g.a. meetings provided me with the means to re-connect to that pain..whenever a ‘new’ person came in …sobbing …desperate …hopeless …I would recall how I must’ve looked when I first entered…how I felt…what was going on in my life…it would come back to me….it would remind me where I had been…and where I could be again…if I don’t do what is necessary.

So….those things allowed me to become complacent….but those things are all FEAR based.

I was missing something.

I was missing having real RELATIONSHIPS with people in recovery…. And..the relationships that I now have provide me with many things…many opportunities for growth..but insofar as complacency is concerned…. Having people who care about me...and can recognize…and call me out on ‘old’ behavior…or ‘old’ thinking…is invaluable.

Today…I believe that…even if I forget how painful gambling was….even if I decide that I have exaggerated the seriousness of my problem….even if I don’t attend meetings…. If I am engaged in a fellowship (defined: an association of people who share common beliefs or activities) where I am developing new ways of thinking and living….and ridding myself of the old, harmful ones….then….gambling just does not fit into that life.

If I knew for a fact…if I KNEW..that I could gamble ‘normally’ – if I KNEW that I would not get caught up in a ‘cycle’ and that no harm would come to me if I decided to gamble today….I would choose not to.

So…changing…growing…and remaining committed to relationships that will discourage reverting to ‘addictive’ thoughts and behaviors…will keep me free…..regardless of whether or not I’m feeling ‘satisfied, content, or…complacent’.

Gambling…is not compatible with who I am today…

********************************************************************************

Imagine the person you would like to be...then become that person. -- I've no idea where I read or heard this...but..it applies. :)

1 comment:

Jac said...

'Gambling…is not compatible with who I am today…'

Love this 'saying' of yours...Its a wonderful realisation and a testament to the work someone puts into their recovery.

I wish everyone the strength to get to that place.