What is an Addict’s “Natural” State?

Welcome to our discussion based on Joe C.’s Beyond Belief: Agnostic Musings for 12 Step Life. We post choice quotes from the daily reading, as well as the discussion questions, and encourage you to think on it and respond in the comments. Please keep our community guidelines in mind while commenting.

“Being healthy is a natural state and the means for achieving it is in the grasp of each one of us. I believe that a judicious mixture of hard work, clear thinking, humor and self-confidence are the ingredients of effective living.”

Your Erroneous Zone, by Dr. Wayne Dyer

…Restless, irritable, discontented–isn’t this the natural state of an addict’s mental health? If there was only one promise it might be that working the Twelve Steps will make us less miserable. Positive Psychology moves away from dysfunction to focus on accentuating our positive, functional selves. Dyer’s book and concepts inadvertently describe the value of working the program. Hard-working, clear-thinking, humorous and self-confident–are these not the qualities of those who we admire?

Discussion questions

  • Is mental and physical health a natural state for me?
  • If not, do I see how it can be cultivated?

 

2 thoughts on “What is an Addict’s “Natural” State?”

  1. “If we are slothful, confused, morose and hypercritical as a natural state, we find we are not alone in Twelve & Twelve circles”

    This part of the reading jumped out at me first. However, being in early sobriety but not new to the fellowship I kinda expect these things to show up here and there. I’m really working hard to not be hypercritical and slothful but confused I don’t know that I have control over or not? That one might just come with more time and working things organizationally.

    That brings me to “Hard-working, clear-thinking, humorous and self-confident–are these not the qualities of those who we admire?” I think being with the people that speak my recovery language eliminates hypercritical which is huge and replaces it with encouraging support rather than opposing religious/spiritual view points. And I love the humor and articulation I hear when I come to Portland. Plus the food is Fab! before for the ride home:)

    1. “I think being with the people that speak my recovery language eliminates hypercritical which is huge and replaces it with encouraging support rather than opposing religious/spiritual view points. ”

      Zachary, this resonates with me hugely.

      I’ve talked about this a lot with recovery friends–the frustration of not receiving sympathy/empathy from “normies.” In my own recovery, it has been so important to really know my audience–to whom am I speaking? Do they speak the same language? Are they safe for that level of vulnerability? I really appreciate your insight on this, and totally agree. Getting support from people who don’t have that hypercritical response found in folks who are stringent in their theism and/or are normies has been a crucial aspect of learning to be kind to myself, too.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *