If you enjoy my posts on this site, be sure to sign up for email updates to my blog on my website, Challenging Addiction too. You will find extra content on the website and I will be adding more blog posts over the next few weeks. In addition, if you previously signed up for updates on my website, your information may have been lost. I had a technical problem a few weeks ago and had to reinstall the site. Everyone who had signed up for updates to the blog will no longer receive them unless they sign up again.
Be sure to check out Challenging Addiction’s Facebook Page too!
Two days ago I got a phone call from someone from my past. I didn’t have his number in my phone because as a recovering addict, I stay away from people who are still using. He left a message saying that someone I knew who was in active addiction overdosed. I won’t mention any names for the sake of her family. I just want to say that she was a good person who was a battling a horrible disease.
She didn’t deserve to die from her addiction. And she especially did not deserve to die alone on her kitchen floor. She was a using addict for probably 20 years. A lot of young addicts have the foolish belief that they know what they are doing. They believe they know how much they can use. However, the drugs you buy on the street are never the same. Sometimes they are stronger and sometime they are weaker. You never know what you are going to get.
This woman’s death was a tragic accident. It could have happened to me so many times when I was in active addiction. But like so many addicts, I thought it would never happen to me. Perhaps it only didn’t happen to me because God knew I would stop the foolishness and get help for my disease. Maybe God knew that I would help other addicts by becoming a Licensed Professional Counselor. Whatever the reason, I lived while so many others have died of this disease.
If you are a using addict or know someone who is a using addict, get help. Please realize that “jails, institutions and death” is more than an expression. It is what will happen if you don’t get treatment for your disease.
Get the help you need. Don’t wait until tomorrow. Don’t wait until you have enough money. Don’t wait until you have clean clothes. Just go. Right now. You may not have another chance.
How to Have an Intervention
This is a link to a question I answered on Choose Help about having an intervention. I answer questions as an expert on addiction on Choose Help. I also write articles for Choose Help about various addiction and mental health topics.
English: perfectionist measuring and cutting grass (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Perfectionism is the opposite of acceptance. When you are a perfectionist you have difficulty accepting anything. Thoughts that everything can and should be better are constantly clouding your mind. It leaves you feeling inadequate and worthless. Perfect is an ideal that can never be reached. It is an unattainable goal. When you set your goals for the unattainable, you end up feeling frustrated and angry. You feel overwhelmed by everything.
Perfectionism overwhelms you with its constant insistence that nothing is good enough. You can become so overwhelmed that you become paralyzed and actually do less than you would if you didn’t push yourself toward perfectionism. When you feel like you have to do so much to make everything perfect, your mind will shut down. You will start to think this is more than I can handle. You will do nothing because you believe anything you do isn’t perfect.
You focus on unimportant details while ignoring the big picture. Doing things over and over to “fix” everything and make it perfect. But it is never perfect. It is never enough. There will always be more to do.
How to Know if You Are a Perfectionist
- You set unrealistic goals
- You are extremely self-critical
- You focus on little details and ignore the big picture
- You start a lot of projects but don’t complete them
- You fail to complete tasks because you think you can’t do them well enough
- You spend too much time on one task
- You feel overwhelmed and frustrated by tasks
- You put off doing things because you feel overwhelmed
- You don’t delegate because you don’t trust others to do something as well as you
This is my flaw. I am a perfectionist. Some people hear that word and think it’s not such a bad flaw. I had someone tell me once that when asked in an interview what your biggest flaw is you should say perfectionism because the interviewer will think that could be a plus for the company. Perfectionism is not a plus for anyone. If they knew how damaging perfectionism is, no one would ever consider it a plus.
I am working on accepting myself and not striving to reach some ideal that is beyond what is possible for any person. These are some tips for what helps me with my perfectionism.
Tips for Coping With Perfectionism
- Accept that “perfect” is unattainable
- Remember that there’s nothing wrong with being who you are
- Accept that others can help you
- Focus on the big picture
- Prioritize tasks – doing the dishes and laundry take priority over having the whitest grout
- Set realistic goals – a to do list with 50 items on it is not realistic
- Complete one task before moving to the next
- Don’t overwhelm yourself by thinking you have to do everything
- Discover the concept of “good enough”
- A task is complete when you decide it is complete – don’t keep doing something because you think it has to be perfect
- Don’t second guess yourself
When I started writing online, I used to read every post 5 or 6 times before I would publish it. You won’t get many posts complete if you read them over and over, trying to make them better. At some point you have to trust yourself and accept that you know what you are doing and you don’t have to make it perfect. Now, I write a post, use the spell check and publish it. I might review it once but never more than that. I was wasting too much time trying to make my posts perfect. The truth is there is no “perfect” and you will only drive yourself crazy trying to reach it.
Procrastination can cause a lot of stress and worry. Stress and worry are not good for a recovering addict because they can lead to relapse. If you let your stress level build up too much, those old addictive thoughts will start to creep in. Your disease will start telling you that drinking or using drugs are the only option to relieve the stress.
Chronic procrastinators feel like they are always busy or at least they should be. Even when they are relaxing, they are thinking about all the things they have to do. When you procrastinate, you have a constant list in your head of things that you have to do. It is a very stressful way to live. It’s time to take control of your life and realize you deserve to have time for yourself. You deserve to relax.
Procrastination is just a bad habit. It happens when you have a task that you don’t want to do and you keep telling yourself, “I’ll do it later,” or “I’ll do it tomorrow.” I have a few good tips to help you stop procrastinating.
Tips to End Procrastination
- Remind yourself that you will spend more time worrying about NOT doing to task than it will actually take to do the task.
- Time chores you really dislike to see how long they actually take. We tend to over-estimate how long it will take to do something we don’t like.
- Make the chore fun with music, singing or dancing.
- Ask for help. You can’t do everything yourself. There’s nothing wrong with getting your family or kids to help with chores.
- Do tasks early in the morning when you have the most energy. Don’t wait until right before bed to try to pay the bills or clean the house.
- Try to enjoy every moment of your life. You can even find something to enjoy about menial tasks like doing the dishes, maybe you like the feel of the bubbles or that you have time to think.
- Think about why you are procrastinating. There may be a deeper issue that you are trying to avoid. Discovering the deeper issue can help you stop procrastinating.
- Realize that it is alright if everything doesn’t get done right this minute.
- Take your time with tasks. There’s no reason to hurry. It will all get done eventually.
- When you are doing one task, stop thinking about the next thing you have to do. Just concentrate on one thing at a time.
- Tell yourself, there is nothing that you HAVE to do. The more you tell yourself, “I have to do this, I have to do that, ” you will stress yourself out. You only have to eat, drink, sleep, go to the bathroom and breathe. Everything else is a choice.
Procrastination is a choice. Life doesn’t have to be as stressful as we sometimes make it. Motivate yourself to do the tasks that you usually procrastinate by telling yourself that you want to do them. Instead of saying, “I HAVE to do the dishes.” Tell yourself, “I WANT to do the dishes so I can get them done and I can relax.” That way when you do relax, you will be able to really relax and not be thinking about those dishes sitting in the sink.
See on Scoop.it – Challenging Addiction
Have you heard your kids talking about “Molly?” She’s no friend. Get the lowdown on a drug your kids may think is safe. (RT @FOX29philly: Have you heard your kids talking about #Molly? She’s no friend.
See on www.myfoxphilly.com