Is shame keeping you stuck in the self-destructive habit of drinking uncontrollably? Or perhaps you’ve done some things that were embarrassing, hurtful or dangerous in the past because of your use of alcohol. You may have even been given the label “alcoholic” and told that you can’t control your drinking. But labels do nothing more than create a negative sense of who you are and shame. And where there is shame, there is a need to self-medicate and try to escape from ourselves.
You have to begin to change the way you see and think about yourself and your use of alcohol. It is important for two main reasons:
1) What you think effects your actions. (For more on this topic, visit Mike Dooley’s “Thoughts Become Things.” http://www.thoughtsbecomethings.com).
2) Shame and feeling negatively about yourself causes more pain and eventually leads to more drinking to escape the painful feelings (visit www.bestyears.com/shame/html for more on “shame.”)
So where do you start to break this cycle?
1) Know that you are not a “label.” Alcohol consumption is a behavior – it is not who you are.
2) Apologize to those that you may have hurt in the past and commit to YOURSELF to start making changes.
3) Make the changes to correct the bad habits or behaviors.
4) Stop the self-judgment! Replace negative thoughts about yourself with positive thoughts!
5) Learn from your mistakes or what didn’t work and continue to do the things that work (for example, take MODER8, plan your drinking and personal goals, find things to do for fun or relaxation besides drink, etc.)
6) Realize that today is a new day and a new opportunity to be the person you want to be…controlling your drinking instead of it controlling you.
Take action by developing your plan and use this site as a resource to help you reach a new goal.