Keep Your Mind Steady

How basic mindfulness helps in recovery from addiction

There are many key principles of basic mindfulness that can help you in your journey to full recovery from drug or alcohol addiction. For instance, the law of attraction teaches us that we attract to our lives what our mind conjures. What we put out is what we get. This is quite straightforward. It means if we can change the way we think, we can change the kind of lives we lead. It also implies that if an addict can change his or her thinking patterns, the change will be reflected in his or her recovery process. It doesn’t matter if you are a believer of the “Law of Attraction”, but what matters most is that you must have at one time or another experienced negativity in your life due to negative thinking. The opposite is therefore true too. Think positive, and you will attract positivity in your life, and in your quest to lead a clean sober life.

Many 12-step programs teach about effects of negative thought processes informally known as “Stinking Thinking” processes. Negative thinking processes include such behaviors as being judgmental, complaining about everything, gossiping, envy, and many others. As you go through the 12 steps, you gradually become aware of your personal “Stinking Thinking”, and how to develop positive thinking patterns for better recovery. You don’t need to be a member of the 12-step program to benefit from changing your negative thinking processes. Learning to recognize these negative thoughts, and transforming them into something positive can uplift your mood and enhance your emotional well-being. Positive thinking will permeate into all the other aspects of your life. If you use drugs or alcohol, have bad eating habits, or are addicted to gambling or internet, positive thinking will help you overcome feelings of anxiety, depression, or withdrawal when you decide to let go of the bad habit.

When you know an addiction is ruining your life and self-respect, you will want to discontinue it altogether. Once you open your eyes to this reality, you start believing that at some point you will stop hiding the addictive behavior and take control of your life. You will want to look in the mirror and feel okay with yourself. You will want to start being proud of what or who you are rather than regret about what you have become. You will want to be a better person. You can only achieve this by dropping the unhealthy self-talk and adopting positive affirmations and visualizations of yourself. Rather than call yourself a loser, you could start imagining you have the power and courage to change things you don’t like about yourself.

One way of dealing with negative thinking patterns is by developing an attitude of gratefulness. Once you begin being grateful of what life has given you, you start seeing life from a positive point of view. You start seeing life challenges as opportunities for positive growth rather as punishment for being a person considered as socially bad. Being grateful will change your thinking pattern and behavior. You will start seeing good things in people rather than negative things in everything a person does. Gratitude makes you happier and more successful in your quest to become a better person through recovery.

If you are already in recovery and things seem not to be going on well, you may need to check your thinking patterns too. Your thoughts could be coming from a fear-based part of your brain. You could be thinking that recovery is an impossible journey due to your inborn fears and constantly thinking negatively about life. However, with help from experts in the field you can change your mindset and learn to overcome your fears.

The most important step to changing your mindset in your quest to beat addiction is to check into a rehabilitation program. You can always ask friends and family for assistance if in doubt.

‘Life Takes Vista’ goes dark, for now

Last week we told you the story of Shmuel “Shmuly” Tennenhaus, an online marketer whose unsolicited efforts to improve Microsoft’s Windows Vista advertising received a less-than-enthusiastic response from the company — in the form of a letter asking him to remove the Windows Vista logos from his ad hoc campaign site.

Yesterday was the deadline, and Tennenhaus replaced the contents of his “Life Takes Vista” site with a copy of the letter from the Microsoft lawyer. But he tells us that’s just an interim measure, and that he plans to relaunch the site soon — with modifications.

Here are the current options, according to a Facebook status update he posted yesterday: “Shmuly is wondering if he (should) change the vista logo to 1) apple logo 2) a peace symbol 3) obama face.