I’m going to talk about why I drank alcohol for so long… over 30 years. In my case, one of the biggest reasons why is because we rationalize our habit in ways which they have a lot of truth behind them.
So when there’s a grain of truth, it’s very easy to accept them in general. One of the things that I used to say to myself was, “I can handle alcohol.” And there’s an element of truth in that. There’s certain times when you can’t handle it, when it’s screwing around with your life. But in general, your body is such a super machine that it’s able to handle large amounts of alcohol, but there are consequences to that. And all those consequences, whether in your life, whether the physically mentally, are ignored. Another one of them is that everybody has trouble. And this is another thing, which is true, that when you’re pouring poison into your body there is a certain amount of trouble that everyone causes for themselves. Because it’s going to do you damage no matter how little alcohol you’re pouring into your system.
Another one that I used to say to myself is, “I don’t lose control.” And there’s a grain of truth in it as well. Because there’s plenty of times where you drink that you don’t lose control, and there’s only very few times that you drink when you lose control. And you can rationalize those aspects away as well. Another one is, “I know what I’m doing.” I can say to myself, I know what I’m doing with alcohol, I tend to drink a bit more water with alcohol, I tend to have some food, I tend to do this, I tend to do that. So I know what I’m doing. But at the end of the day, if you really knew what you were doing, you wouldn’t be doing it to yourself. So it’s another rationalization…
Another one is the functioning alcoholic argument where people say, “Despite my drinking and stuff like that, I’m still able to manage my life. So therefore, I’m not an alcoholic.” And this is one of the biggest problems with the classic alcohol theory that there is sort of a profile of symptoms, a profile of what you’re supposed to behave like, if you were an alcoholic. And if you can rationalize any single one of these away, if you can say to yourself, well, that’s not me. And while I don’t do that, then you can convince yourself that you are not a classic alcoholic. And it’s one of the problems that we face when you start out with the idea that there is no such thing as normal drinking.
We don’t talk about normal drinking, we don’t talk about normal cigarette smoking anymore. We don’t talk about normal heroin use or normal cocaine use, because we know that these toxins that are causing us. Despite of the instant gratification that we might get, these things are causing us to have many problems in our life. And if you can truthfully rationalize to yourself that you don’t fit into this profile in one shape or another, then you can divorce yourself from the whole idea that you have a problem. And this goes with not just alcohol, it goes with many other problems as well.
If you’ve got a problem with your weight, if you’re putting a lot of weight, you need to lose weight, it’s very easy to say to yourself things like, “I’m big boned, or it’s just a genetic heritage that I have”, or there’s some other interior problem that is causing me to eat lots of food that other people don’t have. And again, there is probably a smidgen of truth within that. You know that some people are just more prone to put on weight than others. Some people are just more prone to drink more than others. If there’s a truth in it, it’s only a small truth.
It’s when people allow those small truths to control them. And then they say, “I’ve got no control.” And the biggest truth of all is that you have all of the control that you need. There is only one person that controls this whole journey for you. And that’s you. There’s only one person especially when it’s something that you’re taking from the outside a drink or a food or a drug or another drug and you’re putting it on the inside of your body in order to change an internal feeling, an internal emotion, or internal thoughts. You’re trying to get rid of the thoughts or you know, whatever it is that you’re trying to do, trying to solve it with something outside of yourself. You’re the one that’s in control of that every single time.