The child and the Sage

The definition of insanity

Well, after my boastful post last week after drinking at the weekend before -things went as one would expect, but would have hoped not. I planned to give the rest of the bottle to a friend like I’d said, which didn’t happen. As Friday night went “ok” with the drink and I felt good still on Saturday morning I kept it and decided to drink again on Sunday. I started early, I drank a lot and tipped the rest down the sink. My partner knew I was drinking, so the cat was out the bag.

Was an ok evening and felt fine again on Monday morning.

So this Friday comes and in the shop I thought I’d buy a “one portion” bottle of wine to “treat myself”. Why🤦🏼‍♀️?

Had the wine at 4, drank it very quickly and made up some excuse to pop to the corner shop and bought a £9 bottle of vodka, which was a total of 13 units. I wasn’t going to drink it all of course!

But he’ll you know what happened? I drank the whole fucking lot. The wine and the vodka, so 16 units. I just couldn’t stop. I just had to drink it, it was a compulsion I couldn’t stop.

By 9pm I was a sobbing crying mess, I was texting my sister and best friend and talking shit and ended up crying my eyes out about life in general but the relationship mainly…

Ashley told me to get to bed and I did sleep till 6am, when I woke up still a bit drunk and the toilet roulette began. My stomach has had enough of vodka, I spent the next 2-3 hours sitting on the loo, sitting and shitting ugh! I had to send the kids to the in laws and lie down for an hour …starting to regain my brain by lunch time and got on with the day, obviously full of regret!

So…the moral of the story is just don’t fucking drink Lou! Just dont fucking drink, that’s it…not hard, not asking you to climb a mountain in flip flops or anything, just don’t drink!

It’s a new month, I have learnt from this and I have no desire to drink vodka ever again! No desire to be drunk ever again. Just no.

I came across this article today and it resonates with me-

The Child and The Sage

Our existence is marred by constant ambivalence. We swing back and forth between the impulses that we want to act on and what our sense of responsibility tells us to do.

On one hand, there is the promise of a better future, a tranquil mind and deep satisfaction within ourselves, on the other, instant gratification, fleeting pleasure, followed by bitter regret.

Inside each of us, two beings vie for our mind and dictate our actions: A spoiled child, unable to resist any indulgences. And a wise, thoughtful, and rational sage, wishing what is best for our future, who rewards us for work done well, promising big incentives to the little one if it follows his advice.

When a desire arises within us, it takes us by surprise and we run towards its accomplishment. Then, without even realizing what happens, we leave all theories of free will behind and remain in a sleepy state of automatic action… a voice from the core of our being tries to interrupt, but we easily suffocate it because we are so absorbed and caught up in what we are doing or saying. 

Painful regret begins to accumulate, haunting us in our thoughts throughout the day, and finally, we decide to get down to do the work. We start only when the pressure has become too much to bear, or when our future and career are at risk. We employ titanic efforts to finish up on time. When we make it, we tell ourselves that it’s in our nature to leave things to the last moment and that it’s meant to happen like this anyway, priding ourselves as original and rebellious. If we don’t make it, we see the mistake and promise ourselves to change.

The daily face-off

The child manages to create the most outlandish excuses, presenting them to you as the most intelligent of reasons. It’s a cunning, irrational being that mostly responds to instant gratification. It leads you to ignore the sage who has been trying to convince you from the beginning. 

The sage agrees to be punctual, to do the work on time, to put aside instant, easy pleasures in favor of lasting rewards, leading us from our daily comforts to an experience of true sensual pleasure we can only feel after passing a difficult trial. The wise man represents your willpower, the child your frantic impulses.

Recent research conducted by Roy Baumeister at the University of Florida found that our will power can be compared to a muscle. Like a muscle, it atrophies if it’s not put to the test often, for example if we fall prey to a routine of comfort and idleness. Like a muscle, you will lose its strength if you don’t call on it frequently. 

Other studies have shown that even simple physical exercises, which require discipline and willpower, lead people to reduce their consumption of tobacco, caffeine, and impulsive spending. 

It’s up to you to choose the character you give in to more often: The spoiled child or the thoughtful sage? Making this simple choice helps your favored character gain the upper hand, making it the one that dominates your personality

Published by Sober Singer

A 30-something year old mum of 3 on a mission to life life alcohol free

16 thoughts on “The child and the Sage

  1. Have you gone to AA? I think you will hear your story told back to you.
    I know my own compulsiveness and the lies and denial i told myself ate at me. I was just so disappointed in myself all the time.
    I had many experiences like you…with a few drinks that convinced me I was ok.
    I wasn’t ok.

    The 12 steps are a good eye opened. Allen carrs book the easy way to control alcohol, was enlightening.

    In the end, I needed to just stop. Period.

    You never have to feel that deep remorse and guilt again. You can escape that insane compulsion. It just takes time away from alcohol.

    Hugs and love. You deserve a life of freedom and joy.

    Anne

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I haven’t been to AA, because I am an atheist I just don’t think I can accept a “higher power” as much as I would like to and have tried… also step one- my life is not unmanageable.
      But I will buy Alan cars book. The book “kick the drink” by Jason vale was helping but I didn’t finish it- I will do that first. This focus’s on the point that AA makes us feel we have a problem and have to carry it around the rest of our lives feeling deprived, but really it’s the alcohol that is the problem and we need to change our mindset to realise that…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Honestly, AA doesn’t do that. Nor is there any need to believe in god. I am spiritual, but absolutely not religious.

        Just consider…is compulsively drinking when you swear you don’t want to manageable? I know I often felt out of control….unable to trust myself.

        The people at AA are sober. They know the truth. If you don’t drink the booze, you don’t have a problem! There is no deprivation, just freedom.

        Anyway,I don’t go to Aa regularly,and I have never had a sponsor, etc, but I think there is a huge amount of rational logic in the path.

        Random thoughts. I try hard to try everything. You never know where inspiration can be found!

        Anne

        Liked by 1 person

      1. I haven’t, however I’m on a long great stretch! The things I keep remembering are the new found freedom of not feeling guilt anymore and I love that relationships have gotten stronger within my house. When I drank daily I’d come home from work and have “so much to do.” I’d have a drink or 3 and do my work after work. I stayed in the kitchen and was busy. What I found when I stopped drinking is I could do all my work after work chores AND sit on the couch with some tea, and by doing that my daughter sits with me. ( she’s 16 ) We watch some tv shows together each weekday night now. I never want that to stop.
        I’m having a real hard time with forever no, So I just go day by day and I do make weekly goals. I also tell myself no drinking due to stress, being upset or in any “coping” nature. That has helped a lot! Everyone here on WordPress is so supportive and always encouraging, just like you!
        The struggle is real for sure! One day I hope my brain says forever no but for now I just keep small goal and moving forward. ❤️

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Well done you for being able to see yourself and what alcohol is making you do. And well done you for pouring the bottle out while you’re still drinking it! It really isn’t about willpower because addiction is another thing. You will really struggle trying to sort this out by yourself, and that’s where the AA comes in. I get your position on the higher power thing, but there are philosophical “work arounds” that can help you put it into a perspective that you’re comfortable with. For example, mine is the endless creative, innovative nature of humanity,and its drive to solve even the hardest problems. (That’s what your story tells me. You are still determined to beat this bastard even in the midst of it all. What a fighter you are!) It’s sort of like putting my faith in nature or something, but it’s shaped more to my world view. The great thing AA does offer though is a buddy for you to call when you have that thought of even buying the bottle. If you had that chat with a relative it might end in an argument or some big drama. With your mentor, they take you through a conversation designed to diminish your cravings and suggest options (lots of options!!!!). And you can try different groups until you find one you like. You can always try just one meeting to see what you think. In lockdown they’re all on Zoom so you don’t even have to leave your house so it’s pretty convenient. Plus it’s free. I always say I can’t knock something unless I try it! Really, well done you. The struggle is real. It isn’t you. There’s not a single thing wrong with you. It’s the booze.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. thank you, though I’m not sure I’d agree, but this community really helps keep me on track – had I not been writing here this past few days I think I would probably drink again this coming weekend, until the lockdown is properly over and I’m back to working weekends it’s a battle, but one I know I CAN WIN!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. It’s hard because your readers here, we can see you, we see the fight, we know the struggle, and we can encourage you, but it’s frustrating to watch because only you can do the thing, make the decisions, etc etc. It’s like we’re on different sides of a river or something. And all we can do is shout KEEP GOING! IT’S WORTH IT! IT’S BLOODY DIFFICULT BUT TRY NOT TO STOP!

        Like

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