AMPING UP EMOTIONAL AWARENESS!
Emotional awareness is a skill that is developed to assist in identifying and understanding our emotional states. Commonly, the second that our emotions rise, our ability to think logically declines. Establishing and practicing emotional awareness gives us the ability to regain the drivers seat, instead of sliding into emotional chaos unnecessarily. In order to build this skill, you must take off your emotional masks.
ADDICTION, EMOTIONS, & DYSFUNCTIONAL THOUGHTS
Whatever we tell ourselves, is the "truth" that we act on. Dysfunctional thought systems protect the dysfunction of addiction and essentially re-enforce an addict’s ability to justify continued use. “I can control my use,” “I don’t really have to change my people, places, and things,” “Quitting is enough,” and similar dysfunctional thoughts and belief systems keep us from moving forward. Identify your dysfunctional thoughts and beliefs, talk them over with peers, and professionals. In order to rearrange your thought process into a healthier, more productive alignment, the dysfunctional thoughts must be broken down so that you can replace them with more realistic or factual beliefs, and find greater ease in sticking to your sobriety goals.
Self Awareness Activity:
THOUGHTS + FEELINGS = ACTION
A flood of uncomfortable feelings, combined with dysfunctional thoughts is a recipe for emotional crisis. We have to identify what feelings we have, what thoughts evoke that feeling evoke each feeling, whether or not those thoughts are sound or dysfunctional, and how our corresponding action helps ease, or intensifies, the initial feeling.
Journal: Every time you are overwhelmed by an emotion, try to immediately reflect on what thought took place right before that. Examine what your initial behavioral impulse was and evaluate for effectiveness.
Skill of the Week: SELF CHECK
On a daily basis, be sure to know thyself by asking , “How am I doing Today?”
*Only after a daily "self scan" you can better serve your personal needs proactively.
COPING SKILLS require learning new behavior strategies and putting them into action. Skills, by nature, take time, attention, and repeated effort to become healthy habits.
REPETITION allows you to modify your unhealthy behaviors and replace them with new, more effective behavioral trends that support long term goals.
Recovery IS Possible!
Meg Glidden, MS, NCC