Sobriety and Living in the Present

As we begin and proceed down the path of sobriety, there are times when we may be swayed by remorseful thoughts of what-could-have-been or if-only-I-hadn’t-done-that or why-didn’t-I-do-this or I-should-have-done-that.  We can get caught up in the idea of missed opportunities as we’re being separated from the item(s) that kept us from being present in the world while we awaken to our lives as they actually are.

This line of thinking keeps us far from being aware and in the moment.  We realize that if we immerse ourselves in reveling in our respective remorse, we are living in a past that never actually existed while, simultaneously, we project and fantasize about what would have happened in our future.  As we are so often reminded, neither the past nor the present is the now.

It can be difficult to remain present, especially in early sobriety.  There are so many distractions, be it the person next to us talking or the radio on or the tv or even the blowing breeze.  The staff at this California rehab is well aware of what it looks like when we start to ride our horse of remorse into the wilderness of our fantasies.  They have the ability to not only recognize the moment when that starts to occur, they have the skills to refocus our wandering minds and reorient us to the present.

The present is a new and unfamiliar place in which we begin to reside.  It can be uncomfortable and it can be scary.  Conversely, it is a rich world we inhabit and until we can learn how to live within it and amongst others, aware and mindful of all that is around us, we may continue to hide.  Haven’t we, while using and drinking, hidden enough?

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