Everyday we make thousands of choices. What to eat. How long to sleep. Whether to exercise. How much money to spend. Much of this is unconscious. We eat toast because our father ate toast. We spend lots of money on Christmas gifts because our family spent lots of money. We drink every night because our first husband drank every night.
What we fail to see is this- at some point we decided, and we repeat that decision again and again.
Aristotle, Will Durant, Ayn Rand and many other writers have written on being what we desire. To be a runner, we must run. To be a business person, we must do business. In other words, decide once, and do forever.
Let me explain.
I do not have the strength to decide daily not to drink too much. The drive of addiction is something that lives in me, and that I must be wary of. Previously, every night I would meet with this particular demon and negotiate the evening’s consumption. Needless to say, it often prevailed over reason because I was trying to make a choice when I was already in a place of wanting and of ‘deserving’. I had to muster will power every single day to overcome that wanting.
Finally, after years of fighting, I simply decided. I follow the Canadian Consumption Guidelines. The decision is made. While I still get into fights with addiction, it is far less often. This is the same principle as abstinence. You decide to be a non-drinker. There is nothing left to fight over.
You don’t have to fight everyday. You don’t have to muster the will power every day. You don’t have to fight when you are at your weakest.
As survivors, we have many battles we fight- with anorexia, with alcoholism, with self harm, with love addiction, with shopping, on and on. At times it feels that we are constantly warring with all parts of ourselves.
Stop fighting and simply decide. There is rest in the choice.