Tag Archives: Alcoholism

Recovery from Addiction

I understood myself only after I destroyed myself.

It used to be thought by many doctors, and those in 12-step recovery programs, that addiction was a disease in its own right.  Conversely many people believed that alcoholism, drug abuse, compulsive gambling, and other addictions were due to personal weakness.  That it was all down to the search for instant self-gratification, and that addicts were just unwilling to stop ~ or perhaps unable to stop drinking, using, gambling…..

However, medical science no longer believes that pleasure-seeking alone drives addicts into their own personal hell.  Doctors and scientists now think that most engage in addictive behaviour not so much to attain euphoria as to escape physical, emotional, and spiritual pain and distress.

This is certainly true in my own case.  From time to time I drink far too much, not because I like booze or it makes me feel good.  I suffer from Borderline Personality Disorder, which is characterised by extreme emotions, and from time to time negative feelings such as anger, jealousy, paranoia, anxiety, and suicidal depression cause me so much physical, emotional, and spiritual pain that I escape into alcohol.  And you know what?  Drinking doesn’t really work.

In the USA 15.7 million people seriously abuse alcohol, and 2.6 million of those also suffer from a drug abuse disorder.  In all some 7.7 million people in all use illicit drugs in the USA, and / or abuse prescription drugs.  About 8% of the total population of the USA have a substance abuse problem.  Many of these have multiple addictions ~ gambling, excessive use of pornography, and promiscuity also ruin lives.    Doctors also believe that the type of addiction doesn’t matter at all; whether it be alcoholism, drug abuse, gambling, whatever…..  all addictions are the same, addicts are people who try to escape physical, emotional, and spiritual distress.

Some 47,000 people a year die directly from an overdose of opiod drugs, and alcohol claims the lives of some 90,000 people a year.  I know what that feels like, people who suffer from Borderline Personality Disorder have a 10% likelihood of committing suicide, which is over 1,000 times more than in the general population.

Some days I can barely breathe, I can’t eat and I can’t sleep.  Some days I blame others for my pain and problems.  Some days I am barely hanging on.  And, some days life is pretty good.

The good news is that there are a number of effective treatments for addiction; including self-help strategies, psychotherapy, rehabilitation programs, and in some cases medication.  (As it goes medication doesn’t work, and is actually dangerous for anyone with Borderline Personality Disorder.)  But, I can protect myself from addiction by having meaningful and mindful interests in my life, together with supportive friendships.  My problems and pain are very transient.  And life isn’t always supposed to be fun and filled with pleasure, into every life a little rain must fall.  Shit Happens

Some say that addiction only affects weak and pathetic people.  And that there is no chance of recovery from any addiction.  All I know is that I have many more good days than the bad days on which I hit the bottle.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

recovery doesn’t work for those who need it

recovery works for those who want it

How to Live in Harmony

from discord, find harmony

When you are in harmony with yourself, four things are aligned: what you do, what you say, what you think, and what you feel.  In those mindful moments, things flow without any sense of stress, tension, or negativity.  Your senses, feelings, and emotions fit together and your life has less anxiety, depression, guilt, upset, and stress.

Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.  ~  Gandhi

Being in harmony with yourself and others is all about being authentic, honest, open, kind, trusting, loving, reliable, and at peace with yourself.  It is hard to be at peace with the people, places, and creatures around you when you yourself are not at peace.  It is impossible to be at one with nature when you are not at one with yourself.  Your heart and your brain should be in harmony.

He who lives in harmony with himself lives in harmony with the universe.  ~  Marcus Aurelius

Sadly, most people never experience long-lasting harmony in their lives.  Most chase after material gain, instant gratification, and transitory relationships.

To be in harmony is to do the simple things right, and to the very best of your ability, energy, and strength;

  • If you want to stay sober, then stop drinking booze ~ don’t think you can ever take just one drink once in a while because you can’t.
  • If you want to stop smoking, then stop going through the motions and get serious about never, ever, smoking another cigarette.
  • If you want to lose weight and be fitter and healthier, then eat and drink well, and get plenty of fresh air and exercise.
  • If you promise to help someone, then remember to be there for them and do the things you promised.
  • If you think someone is being unkind and toxic, then stop pretending that all is well between the two of you.  Share what you truly think and feel, and then do something about that relationship.
  • If you feel anxious, depressed, and sad, then recognise and accept the emotions ~ in fact whatever emotions you feel, recognise and accept them.  But, if you want to feel better, then start acting as if you are 100%

If you want the grace to live your own life, in your own time, then be strong enough to live in harmony with yourself and others and all of nature.  Be authentic, honest, and open.  Some toxic and untrustworthy people will pull away from you, but if you do all this you can expect to have more authentic, honest, open, kind, trusting, loving, and peaceful friendships and relationships.

Some say one thing while they are thinking and feeling the opposite.  And most people lie, cheat, and steal.  All I know is we compose our own harmonies in our lives.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

to enjoy the scent of a rose

you must first brave the thorns

Eat and Drink Well

take care of your body, it’s the only place you have to live

appetising, but not healthy at all

All is not well on the dietary front, all around us we see evidence of eating and drinking problems.  Until recently, I myself was suffering with a binge drinking problem.  In the West, alcoholism, eating disorders, obesity, and diabetes are all on the increase.  Cheap drink fills our supermarkets, and fast food outlets are on almost every street corner.  It’s disingenuous to say you’re living a great life when you’re ill with diabetes, liver disease, heart disease, or cancers.

There are always going to be people seeking the instant gratification to be gained from alcohol and the carefree consumption of fast food and takeout meals.  But usually, delayed gratification and the careful choice of what we eat and drink will lead to a longer and healthier life ~ and if you’re still young and beautiful, then does it matter?  Actually it does, and choose carefully because there are few second chances.

The only way to keep your health is to eat what you don’t want, drink what you don’t like, and do what you’d rather not.  ~  Mark Twain.

Assuming that eating and drinking only healthy and organic produce, and always staying totally sober is out of the question, then the secret is everything in moderation.  If possible, avoid food and drinks that are obviously unhealthy, stay away from alcohol, refined sugars, high fructose corn syrup, and very fatty foods.  These things increase your risk of; fatty liver disease, obesity, diabetes, cancers, harmful inflammations, and contain no essential nutrients whatsoever.

Try and develop some new healthy habits;

  • drink plenty of water, about 6 pints a day, (US).
  • Always eat something for breakfast.
  • Have your 5 portions a day of fresh fruit and vegetables
  • Cut out wheat and dairy products, (no cheese and crackers, no milk, no bread).
  • Never, ever, buy a sandwich or a wrap.
  • Only eat good quality meats, and no processed meats at all.
  • Never, ever, have second helpings.
  • Never, ever, eat late at night.

Whatever you eat and drink, avoid too much of one thing, cut out fast foods, stay away from high fructose corn syrup, and don’t drink more than about a bottle of red wine a week.

Some say that we are what we eat.  And that a little booze never did anyone any harm at all.  All I know is that most people in the West treat their bodies like trash cans.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

simple tomato and avocado salad

 

 

Recovery and Addiction

I understood myself only after I destroyed myself

~

Psychiatrists tell us that there are 10 different types of personality disorder, and that suffers do not necessarily cleanly fit into just one category.  They also tell us that there is a remarkable overlap between those diagnosed with a personality disorder and those who also display one or more addictive behaviours.

I suffer from Borderline Personality Disorder, (BPD), and around 80% of those diagnosed with BPD also have substance abuse disorders; the most common being alcoholism, followed by addiction to cocaine, opiates, prescription drugs, and marijuana.  Suffers from BPD are also likely to have other addictions such as being dangerously promiscuous and / or have gambling issues.  In my case I spent several years as a near-alcoholic.

Any addictive behaviour, particularly booze or drugs, by those suffering from a personality disorder just makes everything much, much worse.  Lives become more difficult, they become totally unresponsive to treatment, they become violent, and will threaten, attempt, or actually commit suicide.  Around 10% of those diagnosed with BPD commit suicide, which is 1,000 times more than in the general population.

Therefore, in order to recover from Borderline Personality Disorder, (or any other personality disorder), the first prerequisite is to cease and desist from any addictive behaviours.  In my case this means just don’t drink, stay sober, never touch booze.  This never, ever means that someone in recovery can have one or two drinks, or smoke the occasional joint, or go to Vegas once in a while.  Stopping means just that, stopping completely, forever, just one day at a time.

Sadly, the success rate for those attempting to recover from alcoholism, substance abuse, or any other addiction, is very low.  More than half of all those who want to stop drinking will relapse within 3 months, more than half will die from booze, the side-effects of booze, accidents, or suicide.  (Some say that 100% of those who don’t stop drinking or using will die from their addiction, its side-effects, or suicide.  From personal experience I agree with that.)

There are a few rules to follow to stop drinking, using, or other addiction;

  • stop being friends with people who you used to drink with, use with, have sex with, gamble with
  • stay away from bars and other places where you used to drink or use, or whatever
  • never, ever take the first drink, joint, pill, or whatever your addiction of choice
  • do not get lonely, angry, hungry, or tired
  • change your routines completely
  • live one day at a time

Some say that the survival instinct is overwhelmed by the addiction.  And that once an addict always an addict.  All I know is that if I drink I will suffer very bad things

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

recovery means staying out of bars

Spirituality on Sunday

to walk the warriors path is to continually step out into the unknown

For years my life was based on self-belief, selfishness, and instant gratification.  I was a one-dimensional man, and deep down I was always afraid.  I went to church but I had no belief, I was married but there was no love, I was successful but all that gave me was money.

When we as human beings are disconnected from our true selves we place ourselves in a perilous position.  Our sense of identity becomes lost and we are prey to evils from within and without ~ anger, arrogance, envy, fear, greed, jealousy, lust, paranoia…..  There is no inner peace and little joy in our lives.  We act without thought for others, and we react to real or perceived attacks and slights with anger and extreme verbal or written or even physical aggression.  There is no real love in our lives, either for ourselves or for other people.

Just as a candle cannot burn without fire, men cannot live without a spiritual life.  ~  the Buddha

Without spirituality, without a belief in a power outside of ourselves, outside of that which we can explain through modern science, we do not live, we just exist.  This leads to serious physical, mental, and emotional problems and illnesses.  Alcoholism, explosive anger, drug addiction, gambling, infidelity, inappropriate casual sex, lust, resentments, narcissism, self-doubt, paranoia, fear, cowardice…..  It is not by chance that the second step of 12-step recovery programs is; Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.

Accepting that there is a Power greater than ourselves is the beginning of spirituality, the beginning of a real connection with our true selves.  Spirituality means evolving our consciousness, and at each level of evolution we react to the Cosmos in different ways.  Most people are driven by what is happening in the world outside them, some shape their lives to live in the world they choose, and a very few change themselves by looking at the world inside themselves.  Extraordinary people learn to reshape themselves physically, mentally, and emotionally ~ learning inner peace, true happiness, and how to love themselves and others.

There are three principles to reaching inner peace, knowing our true selves, and spirituality;

  • associate with like-minded people, people who strengthen us. avoid toxic people and toxic relationships
  • put aside time every day to make and strengthen the connection with our true selves. rest, meditate, harmonise your heart and brain
  • transform our character; turn arrogance into humility, hate into love, paranoia into trust

Some say that there is no God, no Higher Power, nothing greater than man and science.  And that Spirituality ranks alongside Magic, Sorcery, and the belief in a Flat Earth for stupidity.  All I know is that a Power greater than myself restored me to sanity.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

My own mind was a prison

 

Reinventing Yourself

Reinventing yourself is an essential process if you want to flourish

I came to a point in my life where I knew that I had to change, it was time to make a fresh start.  As we mature, as we learn and gain greater wisdom, it is inevitable that our goals, dreams plans, and expectations change.  And for some of us, struggling with difficult emotional, mental, and psychological problems, we know that we need to let go of that which doesn’t work any more, never really worked, and was never going to work as far as our personal life and relationships are concerned.

It’s first of all about letting go of expectations, resentments, and hard-wired negative emotions.  It’s about exploring and educating ourselves in new ways of living, it’s about finding ways to cope with those hard-wired negative emotions, it’s about discovering new ways of being, doing, thinking, and feeling.

Invent yourself and then reinvent yourself….. and reinvent your life because you must; it is your life and its history and the present belong only to you.  ~  Charles Bukowski

However, I kid you not, unless you are reinventing yourself as an even worse version of the person you are today, (and I have seen many do that), then making a fundamental change to who and what you are, is fucking very difficult.

You can become a new, different, and better person very easily using your conscious mind ~ but know this, your conscious mind is only in control of your actions for about 5% of the time, the other 95% of the time your subconscious mind is in charge.  And you can’t talk to your subconscious and tell it that you’ve changed because there is nobody in there.  Your subconscious is made up of a set of programs that just run in response to stimuli and rewriting those programs is next to impossible.

One proven way to do it is called Habituation or Act As If.  It’s like learning to drive a car, you practice and you practice until a new set of ‘driving programs’ is stored in your subconscious.  So if you want to stop drinking, smoking, taking drugs, gambling, having endless casual sexual relationships, being a jerk, being a thief…..  then you need to practice and practice not doing those negative things and instead be a better person until those new and better programs are stored in your subconscious.  It will take a year or two.

The snag is that your family, ‘friends’, coworkers, partners in crime, et al., will sabotage you at every turn.  If you’re trying to stop drinking / smoking / taking drugs and you go out with your old circle of friends they will encourage you to drink / smoke / use ~ and the chances are you will give in.  They will continue to label you as alcoholic, addict, slut, jerk, thief, chain-smoker….. in casual conversation and when describing you ~ and that is how they will always think of you.  And none of that is helpful.

The lesson is, if you are reinventing yourself you have to leave behind your old life ~ including all those unsupportive family members, false friends, and toxic relationships because they will do their utmost to drag you down into the past.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

your false friends would like to see you stay there in the gutter with a bottle

Drinking and Drinkers

Booze, the cause of, and the answer to, all of life’s problems.

Long Island Iced Tea

Some people believe that the most reliable way to have fun is to drink to excess.  They believe that to go into a bar, or to go to a party, and not drink at least a half-dozen beers or a whole bottle of wine is incomprehensible.  And for some, wine, beer, and spirits are all the same, the key is the alcohol.  All booze is to be consumed until they feel that buzz, feel like they’re having fun, slurring their words, and knock over a glass.

Go into some bars, particularly airport bars, or any bar in the USA, and you will see women sitting at the bar, usually among a group of men, laughing at risque jokes, watching sports TV, their faces shiny from too much booze.  As predatory as any younger man, of which there will be a lot around any woman.  If anyone’s drinking Long Island Iced Tea, then they really want to get shit-faced.

No pub is without its regulars, who all have their regular spot, and usual ‘friends’who will comment if they miss a session or two.

In airports, railway stations, shopping malls, and strange towns, real drinkers will either know where there is a good bar or make it their priority to find one.  Real boozers will think nothing of striking up an intimate conversation with whomsoever they may find sitting at the bar, and possibly proceed to tell them stuff they wouldn’t ever tell their partner or closest friends.  Sometimes they have no idea where they are when they wake up, maybe in the morning.

Older people tend to do their drinking at home, sitting in their favourite chair, maybe watching something asinine on Netflix, steadily knocking back their preferred tipple until they realise they should go to bed, or they make stupid ‘phone calls, or post sexual stuff online, or just fall asleep / pass out in their chair.

You can always tell a boozer.  They will be overweight with a lot of unsightly belly-fat, they will turn up at work late in the clothes they wore yesterday, their hands may shake in the mornings, probably they are smokers / gamblers / sexually promiscuous, their trash will always be full of empty bottles, and their car will often be found outside their regular pub / bar.

Some women say that they like beer, bikers, and rock music.  And that there’s nothing in their past that they regret.  All I know is that it’s best to avoid that sort of female.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

A real English pub,

where you will never find a nice girl sitting at the bar.

 

Songs on Saturday ~ Piano Man

Booze is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.

I’m English, but I’ve spent time in bars in most of the major cities in Europe and the United States.  You know that you’re spreading it a little widely when you walk into a bar in say ~ New York, just off Madison Avenue, and the barman knows immediately that you drink a stirred vodka martini, or several.

~

I’ve spent far too much time in bars exactly like the one in this song, except there was usually a slightly inebriated woman sitting at the bar trying to get picked up for casual sex.  Sad really.  And the piano man was never as good as Billy Joel.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

I don’t pick up women in bars,

and I don’t have casual sex.

Trust and Friendship

a friend in need is a friend indeed

Today I am unwell in body, mind, and spirit.

I cannot eat, and I can only drink an electrolyte powder in water.

Getting up out of my chair and doing things is difficult ~ I am so unsteady.

Writing this is more than ordinarily difficult ~ English is making no sense at all.

Also I keep getting everyone’s name wrong.  that’s very bad of me.

My sincere apologies to everyone I’ve ever hurt, and everyone I’ve lied to.

I’m glad that I still have some caring friends I can trust.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

and good memories to look back upon

Gain Self-Belief

Each time we face our fears we gain confidence, self-belief, and freedom.

People have a strong tendency to sabotage themselves when things are going really well in their lives.

It doesn’t really matter how smart you are, how grounded you are, or how much money you have, one of these days you will probably get to a place where everything is cool and fine, and then you’ll fuck foul it up with drink, drugs, prescription and over the counter medication, smoking, gambling, binge eating, casual sex…..  It seems as though we have an in-built belief that we are not really worthy, or good enough, or nice enough to have all that success and all those good feelings.  We aren’t comfortable with standing out among our family, friends, and peers ~ and this belief that we don’t deserve our own success is something that we learn in early childhood, before we are seven years old.  Our parents, care-givers, and siblings are to blame for that.

Also, very early on in life, many of us learn to believe that we are unworthy of love.  We learn that we don’t deserve to be loved by others, we learn how not to love ourselves, we learn to believe that we don’t deserve to get all the good stuff that life has to offer.  We continually judge ourselves, criticise ourselves, and fall prey to negative thinking and negative beliefs.

In the extreme these negative feelings and beliefs lead to something called Borderline Personality Disorder, and that creates no end of troubles; paranoia, fear of abandonment, addiction, boozing, reckless behaviours, depression, bi-polar disorder…..

It takes real genius, strong will, self-honesty, openness, and willingness to escape from these dark negative places.

First of all we need to understand love and what it means.  The belief that stops us from fully embracing the love of others and accepting self-love is the negative expectation that it’s all going to turn to crap eventually, and whoever offers love to us is going to abandon us anyway.  Usually that means we will push others away from us, and the denial of love becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

The same things happen with anything and everything else we want, need, and desire; money, health, enlightenment, friendships, personal growth, freedom to do what we really want to do…..

And all of these negative beliefs and thought patterns are imposed upon our subconscious minds in childhood, which of course means we learn to believe all this crap from our parents, the rest of our families, other care-givers, teachers, older children…..

To escape from an unsuccessful, unfulfilled, ultimately unhappy life we need to be willing to throw aside our past and instead build a future which truly reflects the unique, lovable, loving person we are.  If you talk about your past you are just reliving all the negative crap, no matter what gloss your subconscious mind tries to put on all the shit you used to do.

Most people aren’t truly willing to take that monumental leap ~ in fact I don’t know anyone who is.

Do what you’ve always done and you’ll get what you always got.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

you may believe all this smoking, drinking, and sitting at the bar is cool

 

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