For the past ten days my performance in your Quit Now Challenge, quitting an addiction for the month of June, has been weak and pathetic. Oh, I have plenty of excuses - really good ones. In fact my excuses are so good that I had to ask myself where addictions come from.
What makes an addiction? A donut isn't an addiction. A television isn't an addiction. A beer isn't an addiction. These items are inanimate and insignificant. So what turns them into powerful addictions? My answer? Repeatedly choosing the same behavior until that behavior becomes habitual. That habit becomes automatic. That automatic, thoughtless behavior becomes a life style in which free choice is surrendered and the life is taken over. Can addiction be reversed once the addict yields to an automatic, thoughtless life style?
The new path to freedom and independence from the trail of addiction requires stopping, turning, and starting again. But, how can the addict make new decisions if the ability to choose is gone? I believe there is one choice no one can give up. That cannot be taken away. The choice to choose.
The theme of this blog, Choosing to Change, began with a desire to change my established suburban-type life style to an Earth friendly, eco-conscious, crunchy* life style. My husband and I expanded our vegetable garden, started educating ourselves about the environment, bought energy efficient light bulbs. But now I'm up against my addictions, my thoughtless behavior. Now I need to stop, turn, and start again. I choose to change.
*According to the Urban Dictionary, crunchy is an "adjective used to describe persons who have adjusted or altered their lifestyle for environmental reasons. Crunchy persons tend to be politically strongly left-leaning and may be additionally but not exclusively categorized as vegetarians, vegans, eco-tarians, conservationists, environmentalists, neo-hippies, tree huggers, nature enthusiasts, etc."
LESSON: Choosing to change begins at the very heart of who you are.