At some point in time we’ve all heard the expression, “The grass is always greener on the other side”. The chances that somebody was retorting said cliche to you after you had just gotten done complaining are pretty likely. But hey, everybody needs to complain once in a while. If we don’t allow ourselves to vent, all that steam will just build up until we have decided to go postal like Michael Douglas in “Falling Down”. Let’s face it, nobody needs to be walking into work with a rifle anyway.
Maybe you had woken up to your husband blaring heavy metal, or may they eliminated casual Fridays from work. Or maybe your wife selfishly devoured all the chocolate milk and at 3 a.m. you had decided you weren’t going to be able to get to sleep until you crawled out of bed in your underwear and drove to the store to buy more. This kind of stuff happens. Yet no matter how you slice it, we all get frustrated from things happening around us. What matters most though is that we do not allow these things to rent space in our heads for free. Michael Douglas or not, a lot of these things are capable of driving somebody in recovery back to relapse if they allow them to. Positivity in sobriety is a difficult concept to master since nobody is perfect, but it is one that many amateurs will practice happily until the day they die.
Negativity is Subordinate
When it comes to the grass always being greener and what not, why can’t this thought be challenged? What good is greener exactly? Who’s to say your green is the same as mine? Maybe your grass is watered, fertilized, and tended to but mine is premium grade saud. What if the grass on the other side is too green and we don’t like it? I could write a book called “Fifty Shades of Green” and still not answer all the sexless questions that come to mind when comparing lives to others.
It would seem that far too many are Infatuated with idea of wanting what they don’t have, it’s kind of human nature. We are curious creatures that constantly wonder what it would be like to live in somebody else’s shoes. We want and we want and we want but never really step back to see what we have.
We want the car Paul drives, the house George lives in, and John’s wife. Yet what’s wrong with our car, house, and wife? Not a thing but the figments we’ve imagined while comparing our lives to somebody we perceive has it better. Aren’t we still better off than the person having to ride the bus? Isn’t the bus better than walking? If you’re having to walk, at least you have somewhere to go and belong. There’s a layer of positivity in sobriety and all walks of life if we quit diverting our eyes from it.
Positivity is Relative
With all this talk of grass and what not, the point being made is that we choose our happiness. You can say the glass of water is half full, you can say it’s half empty, or you can complain that you’d prefer soda to water and allow your day to be ruined, but the point is that everything will flow in the same manner that you chose it to. If you choose positivity in sobriety, things will begin to look brighter. Contrariwise, negativity will only enhance more negativity. It’s all about perspective; YOUR perspective. Don’t allow the pessimistic perspectives of others to bring you down. Brush them off to the best of your ability.
The positive mindset starts by deciding you want positivity in your life. Ways that we can make this happen start with:
- Replacing negativity in our surroundings
- Finding the good in the bad
- Stop making mountains out of a molehill
- Remaining grateful
- Staying present
That same mindset can put you on a colorful pink cloud embodying all the sights and sounds from “The Sound of Music”, or it can quickly turn into a dimly lit scene from “Requiem for a Dream” if we allow the Charlie Brown rain cloud to remain overhead. Then before you know it your arm is being cut off in a hospital with a hacksaw. Negativity is just as real as positivity in sobriety, the difference being is only one of them is going to keep you sober.
Sobriety in Positivity
Once we have actively started a positive mindset, all these changes will start presenting themselves. It’s kind of like the old saying “good things happen to good people”. Yes bad things happen to good people, but the gist is that your positivity in sobriety will typically come back full circle. We will begin to feel differently about ourselves and others. Our standpoint on life will blossom in a cheerful way we never could’ve imagined as our sobriety continues to get easier. Things will become increasingly better all the time. Even the things that don’t get better will seem that way with our newfound perspective of optimism.
An upbeat way of thinking will make recovery way more worth it. Wasn’t that part the reason to get sober in the first place, cause everything was miserable? Leave the negativity behind with the drugs. Think of this shift in mindset as almost a way of being reborn. We’re taking our old way of life, tossing it out the window, and pretty much starting from scratch.