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The Purple Dragon

Musings about life, as seen through my eyes…

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Self Knowledge

Alcohol is not an excuse for bad behaviour

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The abuse of alcohol is rampant in modern society. Inebriation is often used as an excuse for bad behaviour; including physical and verbal abuse, destruction of property, adultery and promiscuity. Alcohol is also often associated with criminal behaviour.

Do you do things you feel you’d never do when sober? Do you blame your actions on “I’d had too much to drink”? Do you wake up with regrets and recriminations?

The bottom line is this. Alcohol does not change your personality or your ideas; all it does is enhance just exactly who you really are by removing the inhibitions that would normally hold you back.

If you are capable of doing something while drunk, then you are more than capable of the same act without the use of alcohol.

Some people are problem drinkers without being dependent on alcohol. If you consume alcohol to cope with difficulties or to avoid your feelings, you’re in potentially dangerous territory. You may not consider that you have a problem, especially if you surround yourself with others who drink as much as you do. Remember “like attracts like”, and drunken friends often keep problem drinkers in denial of their problem. The truth is, people who can handle alcohol and have a healthy relationship with it, have normally had enough after the second drink!

Is alcohol a problem in your life? Do you, or does a loved one, drink too much? Does your drinking affect those around you? Not sure whether you have a problem?

Common signs and symptoms of alcohol abuse include:

  • Continuing to drink even though your alcohol use is causing problems in your relationships. Getting drunk, for example, even though you know your wife will be very upset, or fighting with your family because they dislike how you act when you drink.
  • Need to drink in order to relax or feel better. Many drinking problems start when people use alcohol to self-soothe and relieve stress. Getting drunk after a stressful day, for example, or reaching for a bottle if you have an argument with your spouse or boss.
  • “Black out” or forget what you did while you were drinking.
  • Lie to others or hide your drinking habits.
  • Repeatedly neglecting your responsibilities at home, work, or school because of your drinking. For example, performing poorly at work, flunking classes, neglecting your kids, or skipping out on commitments because you’re hung over.
  • Using alcohol in situations where it’s physically dangerous, such as drinking and driving, operating machinery while intoxicated, or mixing alcohol with prescription medication against doctor’s orders.
  • Experiencing repeated legal problems on account of your drinking. For example, getting arrested for driving under the influence or for drunk and disorderly conduct.
  • You become verbally or physically abusive after a few drinks.

If your drinking is causing problems in your life, you have a drinking problem. It’s as simple as that!

Gratitude can lessen pain

Screen Shot 2016-04-12 at 10.49.56 AMI have been in a bit of a self-pity slump of late, but after my initial ‘oh my god, another day…more pain’ mindset when I woke up this morning, I propelled myself into action, got the kids off to school, and settled in for my morning tea and social media catch-up.

For those who are anti-social media for whatever reason, there is a plus side to it (besides the social side), and that is that you can subscribe to many positive and uplifting pages. It is thanks to one or two positive quotes that popped up on my news feed this morning that I managed to get out of my morning grey fug, and decided to write a quick blog before I start my workday.

Start the day with gratitude for what you have, and your day’s off to a good start.

Instead of the usual negatives, flip over those thoughts and turn them to positives!

• Urgh…another busy, stressful day ahead! You have a job! Be grateful! There are many who don’t know where the next cent is coming from, and would happily trade places with you! If you don’t have a job, get networking…

• Oh no! Traffic again…I hate having to sit in the traffic! You have a car? Lucky you! You have money to put fuel in your car? Nice! Be grateful.

• Do the kids have to bicker about everything? Okay, so you’re perfect? You never get irritable? Aren’t you lucky to have children when many are childless? Aren’t you fortunate to have little beings in your life that love you unconditionally? So, they have their moments, so do you…get over it!

• Winter’s here…it’s cold, and dark when I have to get up for work! Not so long ago you were whining about how hot it was! Enjoy the unique beauty each season brings…before you know it, summer will be back…and so will the flies and mosquitoes you love so much…not!

• I’m tired of being broke! Well, get off your arse, put on your thinking cap, and earn some cash. There is always a way. And STOP spending unnecessarily! THINK before you buy: “Do I really need this?” I read a quote recently: “How to double your money…fold it in half and put it back in your pocket!”

• Make a list of all the things you have to look forward to. A holiday away for the Easter weekend, a friend from out of town coming to visit…if you don’t have anything planned, make a plan! Even if it’s a picnic on the grass, a visit to a friend, half an hour with a good book when you get home…it’s something to look forward to.

• Look at what you have to be grateful for. A roof over your head, a body that works (even if it doesn’t always feel great), food, running water, electricity, family, friends…there’s lots to be grateful for.

Live in the now. My brother said something to me recently that struck a chord…”when are you going to start living life on life’s terms?

We have no control over what other people do, nor can we control a lot of what happens in life. Accept it, and stop trying to control the uncontrollable. Do what you CAN do – make amends – not just by saying you’re sorry, but by rectifying the situation, get motivated and DO what you said you’d do (lack of integrity also causes pain), be nice and do a good deed for someone, spend quality time with your children…and trust that the rest will happen as it should.

 

It takes courage to look at yourself, and own all your shortcomings…for it is in facing the truth, that we are able to change. To quote a jaded quote, the truth will indeed set you free!

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