Feelings and Urges

Hi there everyone? How are you doing? How do you feel today? 

Do you know that is actually a super important question? Let me tell you why – the reason we do anything in life is because of how we think we will feel…. Or to avoid feeling something.

You know what I mean? 

So for many of the clients I work with – and honestly for myself – one of the Main reasons I wanted wine was so I didn’t have to feel stressed – you feel me? lol 

Like it would be a long day, or end of month, or end of quarter and I couldn’t wait to take the edge off….. because I didn’t want to feel so anxious. 

Now remember – in last weeks episode – episode 2 – we talked about how our thoughts create our feelings. So in my case I would think – I want to relax – just that little thought would make me feel desire for wine – and then I would drink it. 

Totally programming my brain to know that when I want to relax I should have wine. 

This is good news.  If this is you It’s just something you have trained your brain to believe is necessary. It is the way the brain is designed – avoid pain – stress from a long day – seek pleasure – wine is quite a pleasurable dopamine hit – and do it as efficiently As possible – when you do it often enough it makes it efficient. 

So – how do we unlearn it? 

We stop answering the urge to have the wine. 

This is not the same as willpower. 

The thing with will power is there is only a finite amount. So by the end of the day, you might be like – screw it – I need my glass! And so it almost feels like you are drinking against your own will right? 

Let’s go to the place where you feel desire for alcohol – call it an urge, or call it a craving – you want it. 

You have 3 options –

  1. just give in and have it 
  2. Fight against it with willpower and resistance – that’s always pleasant, right? 
  3. Or – allow it. 

Let me explain the concept of each. 

Ok – I think the first is pretty self-explanatory – pretty sure we are all good at it – give in, have the wine. I like to use the analogy of a mom and a young kid in the grocery store where the kid is like – I want that candy bar – I want it I want it I want it – and Mom gives in and now the kid knows that’s how they get what they want right? 

Willpower and resistance look like another mom with the same situation – and she is fighting back with the kid – no – you can’t – I told you before – no no no – super uncomfortable and doesn’t end pretty. And often ends with her giving in anyhow.  My guess is this is another option we’ve all tried in the past. 

But then there is another mom who calmly, and with compassion, tells the kid no, likely some pushback from the kid by Mom explains there is not going to be a candy bar today – maybe another time, but not today.   

Still may be uncomfortable but the kid knows this is not how we are going to operate – this so not how to get what you want.   

This is how you want to show up when. you are doing the work to drink less. 

You first recognize your thinking is causing you to feel desire for the drink, and that’s ok. You don’t have to answer it.  Think about this – has there ever been a time you wanted to ram somebody on the highway for going so slow in the fast lane with the left blinker still going?   But you don’t.   I drive a lot – you may be able to tell I’ve had this urge once or twice.. lol. 

You may feel like you want it in that moment by taking a minute to pause and ask yourself if that is truly what you want long-term? 

This is an important key – you want to pay attention to your thinking – first – the thinking that is causing your desire –  but then you also want to pay attention to that toddler that starts acting out when you decide not to answer the urge. 

You get to choose if you want to just calm the initial resistance by having a mind temper tantrum telling you how terrible life is that you aren’t having it, or reassuring yourself and understanding this is something for a greater benefit, and if you want to have some alcohol is 24 hours you can decide to do that in advance – but you are not just giving in to your urge. 

We will be talking about the importance of planning your drinking in next weeks podcast.  And yes – I said plan to drink – I told you this was going to be unlike most things you’ve heard in the past didn’t I? lol

But for this week – I encourage you to take note of every time you don’t answer an urge.  Each time you don’t answer an urge it is one loop starting a new neural pathway in your brain to decondition your desire.

You keep doing that and I’m telling you – as crazy as it may sound it works – this is the first step to begin drinking less

Remember – this is a process.  And if you want the free guide to help you go to www.mindfulweighs.com/freebie — remember – weighs is w-e-i-g-h-s. 

Ok – that’s it for today – let’s circle back next week same time – as for now – make it a great day – take care!