This Too Shall Pass 115

this too shall pass

Bad things happen. But they pass. And new stuff happens after that.

If we decide to hold onto the previous event, and relive it again and again in our heads, we won’t be able to experience the new things life has planned for us.

Don’t take things too seriously.

Some people let one tragic event ruin their whole life. They never move on. Instead, they create their own hell and live in it every single day.

But what’s the point of that?

Should one failure, loss, bad relationships, disease, lost job or another problem define us for the rest of our lives?
Of course not.

Things are permanent. So don’t take them too seriously.

There are things you can prepare for, moments you can take action in, situations you can make the best of and opportunities you can take.

But when something’s already happened and there’s nothing you can do about it, just let it be and move on.

Time heals everything.

Realize that and it will take you much less time in the future.

If you know misery, disappointment, bad feelings and depression are permanent and you’ll eventually get back on track, then you won’t waste so much time feeling sorry for yourself, having regrets or missing someone.

Bad things pass. And life goes on.

And you either move on with it, or stay stuck in a past experience and keep ruining your present moment.

Learn to let go.

You can be present and live life to the fullest only if you leave the past behind.

Letting go means being okay with things as they are, focusing on the now and not thinking about anything else.

This way you make place for new things to happen, and let in freedom, peace and contentment.

What has already happened doesn’t need to exist in your now. So let it stay in the past. Take a lesson, become stronger and look forward to what lies in store.

This moment is the only place where you can do something about your future. Nothing else exists.

I think it’s crucial that we become present and learn how to be mindful of our current activity.

That’s how you enjoy life. That’s where you find happiness.

“…no amount of thinking can eliminate the wonder and pain of living. No wall or avoidance or denial—no cause or excuse—can keep the rawness of life from running through us. While this may at times seem devastating, it is actually reassuring, because while the impermanence of life, if fixed on, can be terrifying, leaving us preoccupied with death, the very same impermanence, if allowed its infinite frame, can soothe us with the understanding that even the deepest pain will pass.”
Mark Nepo, Book of Awakening

See also:

“This Moment”  – my eBook on living in the present moment and letting go of past and future – you can get it for free
Going with the flow
The painful beauty of impermancence
The origin of our suffering
The power of the present moment

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Alternatives to The Twelve-Step Program 27

Alternatives to The Twelve-Step Program

For those suffering from addiction, the Twelve-Step Program is the world’s most famous method of recovery. It was introduced back in 1939 in The Alcoholics Anonymous ‘Big Book’ as it’s come to be known.

It’s since helped many more than one hundred men (and women) and has been only slightly adapted over the years. Regardless of small changes, the core principles of admitting alcohol/narcotic dependency, believing that God can restore health, and making amends to others hurt during one’s addiction are retained.

While this program has had many successes in helping thousands across the world to overcome their addictions, there are two main criticisms:

  • It doesn’t work for everyone, and;
  • It is founded on faith in a Higher Power.

Some people try this famous program, lauded as the ultimate key to sobriety, only to be disappointed and feel a sense of hopelessness that something that has worked for so many hasn’t worked for them.

Others are put off that belief in God is required to truly embody the program, which some people simply don’t align with.

It’s important to remember that the Twelve-Step Program is far from the only addiction management and recovery method out there. Every individual is different; therefore, a one-size-fits-all approach to addiction (or indeed anything) is impossible.

Here are some other recovery programs that have facilitated recovery from addiction for many people around the globe.

SMART Recovery

This organization focuses on cognitive behavioral therapies that help addicts to adapt their reactions, thought processes and dependencies into healthier habits. It helps those with alcohol and drug dependency recognize the emotional and environmental factors behind their problems and learn to manage addictive behaviors. SMART is committed to evolving its program as scientific knowledge evolves; remaining active rather than static where addiction treatment is concerned.

If this sounds like something you’d like to try, there are over 635 groups in the US and 613 international groups – it’s more than likely that there is one in your vicinity.

Women for Sobriety

If you are a woman who feels she would be more comfortable supported by a group of women, this is offered by WFS.

The group was founded in the 1970s by Jean Kirkland, who developed her own way of overcoming addiction and dependency. It centers on bolstering women’s self-value and addresses the individual emotional issues that lay behind each person’s addiction. 

S.O.S.

If Twelve-Steps hasn’t worked or isn’t something you want to try, but you’re open to getting support from a secular organization, then S.O.S. could be an option to explore.

They work on an abstinence-based approach and their groups are free to anyone who wishes to be free from addiction. They are a non-profit organization and cover running costs with donations, which are greatly appreciated by anyone who uses the service or other supporters.

Meetings generally begin with celebrations of sobriety and abstinence anniversaries, followed by discussions and group activities. They aim to create a positive, buoyant atmosphere through which to motivate members. Sharing of advice and strength is promoted and members are encouraged to offer their utmost support to others. 

Besides these examples, there are hundreds, if not thousands, of rehabilitation facilities all over the world that have developed their own recovery programs – it’s down to the individual to choose one that they think will benefit them best. This rehab website from NJ gives details about the SOBA College Recovery which integrates addiction rehabilitation with treatment for coexisting mental health disorders and return to education for young adults.

There are a multitude of options out there – some simple research is sure to find a path right for you.

***

This article is not certified medical advice. If you or a loved one is struggling with addiction, please consult your doctor for medical advice about how it is best for you to begin to change your lifestyle.