Have you ever thought that your life would be perfect when: you had more money? you had a bigger house? you could find the perfect love relationship? you had a better wardrobe? you lost a bunch of weight? This kind of thinking can hold us back from moving forward in life. It is easy to get caught up in our physical surroundings or in our marital status or in the things that we own. People may find themselves hoping if they work really hard and acquire all of their desires, life will finally be perfect and then they can live happily ever after.
This does not always help people find true happiness. The fact of the matter is we do not need possessions or other people in our lives before we can find peace or get sober or enjoy life. This kind of thinking holds people back from enjoying their journey in recovery. It can stop some from being able to live in the moment because they are so caught up in achieving so many specific goals and acquiring numerous possessions. People who suffer from problems such as drug addiction or alcoholism can fall into the trap that life will NEVER bring happiness or success because of the chaos created by their disease and their actions. The consequences that come from living a drunken lifestyle may appear to seal the deal and lead sufferers to believe they are not entitled to find happiness as they have defined it in their own minds.
The good news is that life can be awesome with or without the house, with or without the perfect partner, the perfect body, or the large balance in the bank account. We do not have to box ourselves in to thinking there is only one path to sobriety and happiness in recovery. Joy can actually be found in doing everyday tasks. Joy can be found when we “accidentally” meet a friend or a stranger who needs help and we give it to them without asking for anything in return. Happiness can be found in simply living in sobriety and choosing to go in a new direction, with a different agenda. It can be done no matter where your starting point may be.
The trick is to practice changing our thinking. Learning to let go of pre-conceived notions and becoming open to new possibilities will help. I always imagined life would be perfect when I met the perfect man. Well, I”m single now, life is not perfect, but I am happier than I have ever been before. I have learned to accept me just as I am and that has changed my attitude in all areas of my life. This can work for anyone who is willing to open up and simply acknowledge that life can be enjoyed more by living in the moment rather than waiting for all of the pieces to fit together in perfect fashion.
It is not always easy to let go of old ideas. It takes practice, practice, practice. But if life is not working out the way you think it should, it cannot hurt to try something new. The results may astound you. Don’t wait for the house, the car, the money, or the job to spur you to get sober or to “make” you happy. Choose happiness now, choose recovery now, and life will get different. Let go of old ideas and trust that after life gets different your perception will change and that will allow you to see your life in a new light. Gratitude for the little things will bring about gratitude for more and more. This shift may just change your entire life. It is certainly worth a try because you are worth it.