The Voices In My Head

I have a voice in my head that is cunning, baffling, and powerful.  I've never heard the words cunning, baffling, and powerful before I started to attend Alcoholics Anonymous (A.A.) meetings.  In the literate of A.A it talks about how alcohol is cunning, baffling and powerful. I'm not an alcoholic, so I don't know if alcohol is cunning, baffling and powerful, but I do believe my thoughts and what goes on between my ears are no doubt, cunning, baffling, and powerful. I often wake up in the mornings with very similar thoughts running through my head.  They are often insecurity, fears, doubts, and a reoccurring thought that people will find out who I really am-a fraud. People might perceive me as having a very tough exterior, but underneath that I am extremely sensitive. When people give me too much negative feedback, it hurts. There is this part of me that when I put myself out their too much, I feel the need to real myself back in and protect myself.  I get scared and I put the armor back on. I often in hear a voice in my head which I call the fuck it voice.  I don't like swearing, but it's the best word I can think of when this voice in my head says fuck it.  I am positive this voice is self-will, not God’s will. Over the years I've been able to distinguish very clearly the difference between self-will and God’s will. I have been able to distinguish what’s the right next action to take.  Usually, I know it is Gods-will for me if it is the right thing to do, but I struggle to do it. Here is an example. I wake up early every Thursday morning to go to my 7a.m. A.A. meeting.  I am often running a little late.  I have this thought that comes into my mind saying, Michael, you need to get some coffee now! I don’t know exactly where this thought comes from, but, once it is in my mind, nothing is going to stop me from getting my coffee.  I realize if I go to Starbucks, I will be late to the meeting.  Too frequently I listen to this voice even though being on time is something that is extremely important to me. In that moment I make a decision-clearly my self-will.  Gods will says, Michael, don't stop for coffee right now, you can get coffee after meeting. Go to the meeting and be on time.  I know that is the right thing to do. For years I had this belief that my willpower to do the right thing was very week. When I struggled making simple decisions, I would just beat the crap out of myself when I did not do it.  I would say things to myself like, I must not be smart enough, I must not be working hard enough, I probably need to see my therapist more frequently.  One of the biggest insights I have had over the last several years was when I finally saw that willpower was not my problem.  The truth I found was that I am powerless in those moments to make a good choice for myself. So, when those moments happen, I now know the right thing to do, but it is a struggle to do it.  I ask God or my higher power to help me take the next right action. Help me not go get coffee, and instead, help me show up to the meeting on time. People often relate the word relapse to drugs or alcohol.  While people who are sober do relapse to drugs or alcohol, I also believe people relapse  into, depression, anxiety, and other unhealthy habits. What I know about a relapse is that they don't happen over overnight.  I can often see a relapse from a substance or a behavior coming three or four weeks before it happens.  The relapse starts with that first quite whisper that say, fuck it, it does not really matter if I do this one little thing that I know I should not be doing.   In that moment, the consequences are not that big.  But, doing these small little things that you know you are getting away with day after day, week after week, almost always leads to a relapse.

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