Rituals and Habits

We are what we repeatedly do.

If you are at rock bottom, deep in the slough of despond and fighting off depression, then sometimes you can see no way out.  Everything seems hopeless and pointless, and you may feel helpless and aimless.  There may come a time when you don’t even want to get out of bed ~ unless it’s go and get your next drink or other drug of your choice.  Sometimes, late at night I’ve seen disheveled individuals shopping for booze, obviously wearing a coat over whatever they last went to bed in.

When it’s that bad, may I suggest a way to get yourself back onto this planet with the ordinary people?  Try to develop some useful rituals and habits that will stick with you for the rest of your life.  Perhaps in order of bringing you back to normality, do these things every single day;

  1. Get yourself out of bed at the same ‘reasonable’ time every day.  Say, eight in the morning.
  2. Go to the bathroom, have a wash, and if you’re a guy get a shave.  If you’re a woman, do something with your hair.  Do this every morning.
  3. Every single fucking damn day, find some clean clothes and get dressed.  If you went to bed dressed, get changed.
  4. In the kitchen, drink a pint of water.  Try some tea, coffee, and something to eat too.
  5. Take out the obvious trash, and then walk to the nearest store. Do Not Drive.  While you’re there buy food and fruit or vegetable juice.  Do Not Buy Booze or Medications.
  6. After lunch take a couple of hours to nap on the sofa or in the chair.  Make it an unbreakable ritual to take an afternoon nap.  If you can meditate, make it an unbreakable ritual to try to meditate during that time.
  7. After your nap telephone someone to tell them you’re alive and doing better.  It might be a while since they spoke to you when you were sober, so they’ll be pleasantly surprised.  If you don’t know anyone phone AA, or NA, or the Samaritans, but for Gods’ sakes talk to someone.
  8. Always go for an afternoon stroll.  Don’t go into a bar, or the store, or any of your usual haunts.  Walk in the park, or by the sea, somewhere peaceful.
  9. Read something difficult, useful, inspirational, helpful ~ if you have nothing to read, find a big book, or a Bible, or a discarded newspaper, or join the fucking damn library.
  10. Eat an evening meal, every single fucking damn day.  Eat a meal even if you feel like throwing up ~ you need the calories and other nutrients, or you will die.  Drink a pint of water with your meal
  11. If you have been to a 12-step meeting before, go back.  Attend regularly.  If you haven’t been to a 12 step meeting find one that suits your particular problem.  If you can’t find something that matches your current form of self-harm, go to AA.  If you can’t get there, phone them, and they will send someone to get you.
  12. Go to bed at the same time every day.  Say ten o’clock.  Drink a pint of water and then get changed before you go to bed, even if that means sleeping nude.  Go to the bathroom before you go to bed, wash, clean your teeth, examine yourself for injuries that might need treatment tomorrow.

If you have never been where I’ve been, where some still are, the above 12 rituals and habits might seem bleeding obvious.  But, if the last thing you drank was booze, and the last thing you ate were pills, then those 12 habits might just keep you alive, sane, and on the road to recovery.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

you may think you look as cool as this when you go to your bar

you don’t

 

6 responses

  1. I was thinking about how I need to pay attention to this. I need to reboot my routine to Oregon cuz I’m a mess!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Baby steps Kris, baby steps….. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I keep tripping….

        Liked by 1 person

        1. I get knocked down, but I get up again….. 💖💖

          Liked by 1 person

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