On my return of my very first trip back from the Northern Cheyenne Reservation, summer of 1985, I had seen first hand what alcohol had done to the Native Americans. It took over four weeks back in Kent, England before I would touch a drop of alcohol again. I even thought for a while that pubs were blood money, I had that much anger about what it had done to my people.
One summer, I had a romance with a descendant of a famous Chief, by the following summer, when I went to visit her to let her know that I was back, her parents had no idea where she was and she hadn’t been back home for a few days. So I asked the younger brothers and sisters where she was and borrowed the parent’s pick-up truck to look for her. The kids would never tell their parents where she was, but would tell me.
We found her in the middle nowhere, as far as I was concerned, in what is called a ‘party house’, usually windows broken and really just a drinker’s den. She was lying asleep in the sweltering August afternoon heat and in the other room lay another older woman, both comatosed. I lifted and carried the daughter and dumped her in the back of the pick-up and drove her home. The parents pleased with my find, put her into her bedroom to sleep. There was nothing more I could do so I returned a couple of days later to see how she was to find that she was gone again. She had chosen alcohol over seeing me again. What a difference, twelve months make. So I left it, I wasn’t going down that road with her, I had to be strong.
It’s true to say on the physical level that alcohol is addictive and effects the emotional level as well. But you could also say that there’s an alcohol problem if it effects your relationships.
Many spiritual leaders and mind-body specialists now believe alcoholism is a physical manifestation of a rejection and denial of the Self. According to this perspective many alcoholics tend to be fleeing themselves or some part of themselves, refusing to confront their deep-rooted fear and shame, self-loathing, and/or inadequacy to love themselves.
Understandably, this mode of belief appears to challenge the notion that alcoholism is a disease over which the afflicted has no control. One problem with that notion, however, is that it feeds into the sense most alcoholics have of being “out of control” over themselves and their lives. Dealing with alcoholism from a mind-body perspective empowers the individual to affect positive, proactive changes in their innermost being that will presumably then reflect outwardly in positive, proactive change in their lives.
As an exercise for dealing with alcoholism on a spiritual level, try this:
1. Find a private room where you can lock the door and will not be disturbed.
2. Stand in front of a mirror – a full-length mirror is best. It is also best if you are naked, but this is something you can work up to as you practice this exercise over time.
3. Look yourself in the eyes and say aloud: “I love you.”
4. Now stay silent and breathe and listen to the denials, objections, rejections, refusals, contradictions, mockery, and all other negative statements that come up between you and the full acceptance of this statement.
5. Without judgment, without reaction, simply take a deep breathe into your belly and release all that negativity with a loud, expulsive sigh: “Ahh!”
6. Then look yourself in the eyes again, and again make that same statement aloud, “I love you.” It’s important to find something good about yourself, because you are a part of life. If you can’t love yourself, then you can’t love life.
7. Repeat Steps 5 and 6 until you are able to hear that statement and take it in without judgment, without rejection, without negation. It may take some time, but it will happen.
8. Then try this exercise with other statements, like: “I forgive myself,” “I’m worth it,” “I am good enough,” “I am in control of my actions, my life,” etc.
The beauty of this exercise is that it helps inure you to the triggers for alcoholic behaviour while working to reshape the very patterns of thought and feeling that fed this beast alcohol addiction. The more you look those patterns in the face, the weaker that beast becomes and the less power it has over you.
Also, EFT really helps with addictions. Please feel free to call me at my Tunbridge Wells, Kent life coaching practice if you’d like a free 30 min consultation to see how I can help. This is one road I can go down with you.
’til we meet again,
Walk in Beauty;
Walk in Peace.
‘Causing the Miraculous by Spreading Beauty, Truth & Harmony‘
Johnathan Brooks, MAC, PG Dip is a Life Coach who has trained in a wide range of personal development treatment methods including the “Power Therapies” (CBT Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (postgrad), EFT Emotional Freedom Technique, Master NLP Neuro Linguistic Programming) and has a Post Graduate Diploma in ‘Coaching and NLP’ which he passed with a ‘Commendation’. And is based in Tunbridge Wells, Kent.
He is a full member of the Association for Coaching (MAC) and is a Gold member of The Professional Guild of NLP.