Thursday, December 20, 2012

Purging Triggers

I want to talk about a really important aspect of sobriety and a huge important first step to recovery as a whole.  As addicts we have many behaviors, things and thoughts that trigger our addiction.  Often many of us try to maintain sobriety and achieve recovery without surrendering these triggers either because we haven't yet come to recognize them or simply because our pride tells us we can conquer them on our own.

Often times I would identify a trigger and begin a battle with my pride and with the intimate temptations of the adversary.  I was so used to listening to him that his thoughts seemed to be my own.  He was in essence, a worm-tongue, leading me down the dark staircase to hell with his word-magic.

I want to aid the battle of identifying triggers by speaking openly about them.  I feel that if I list triggers that I and others have had, and have surrendered, then it may help those that are struggling to identify the same struggles as triggers.  Knowledge is power.  I feel that once someone can identify their struggle as a legitimate trigger it gives permission for them to give it up.  Knowledge has the potential to greatly reduce or even eliminate the struggle.  It takes the power away from the seduction.

I asked my awesome sisterhood some of the triggers they have had to surrender to the Lord in order to achieve recovery.  Each of these are Personal Tithes that have been sacrificed in order to be healed.

The following are their responses, mingled with some of my own:
  • Gave up driving down specific streets or nostalgic locations that trigger addictive thoughts.
  • Gave up visiting video stores - Blockbuster, Netflix or Redbox.
  • Gave up walking in specific areas in bookstores.
  • Gave up going to clubs alone (or at all).
  • Gave up toxic friends.
  • Gave up books, videos and inappropriate magazines - literally threw them away.
  • Gave up sleeping in the nude or with satin/silk sheets.
  • Gave up sleeping with a bunch of pillows.
  • Gave up staying up really late.
  • Gave up feeling sorry for themselves.
  • Gave up phone numbers (deleting phone numbers and changing their own numbers).
  • Gave up watching rated R movies.
  • Gave up isolating and began reaching out.
  • Gave up Facebook and/or other social media.
  • Gave up watching ANY movie with romantic or sexual content.
  • Gave up swearing.
  • Gave up wearing earrings in 2nd and 3rd holes.
  • Gave up sleeping in big beds.
  • Gave up Smartphones with internet and app download access.
  • Gave up the internet.
  • Gave up bathing (rather than showering).
  • Gave up sexually explicit conversations - even with friends.
  • Gave up wearing lingerie or accentuating bra's and underwear.
  • Gave up a 'grass is always greener on the other side' attitude.
  • Gave up playing internet card games.
  • Gave up crude and inappropriate jokes.
  • Gave up long showers.
  • Gave up looking in the mirror with no clothes on.
  • Gave up locking the bedroom and bathroom doors.
  • Gave up dressing provocative.
  • Gave up many musical artists.
  • Gave up torrenting (illegal downloading of music and movies).
  • Gave up unprotected internet access (ALWAYS have internet protection software).
  • Gave up using a laptop or internet ready devises in the bedroom.
  • Gave up sleeping on stomach.
  • Gave up dating.
  • Gave up control.
  • Gave up the idea that all of the above should or can be continued and mastered on our own.
There are many many more than what is on this list because each trigger is personal to us.  The adversary has quite the tactical advantage over us.  He has known us since the pre-existence.  The veil did not remove his memory as it did ours.  Even in our infancy he knew what our weaknesses would be as we matured.  He has armies and armies of agents working for him that incessantly whisper temptations in our ears.  If we are not relying on the Lord then we are stripped of any protection we could hope for and fall subject to the enticements of our triggers.

We will fail each and every time if we do not give them up.

But we must not forget that the Lord is God, and He is All Mighty and Omnipotent.  He can, will and wants to rescue us.  But the faith precedes the miracle.  The Lord won't simply remove the temptation of these triggers from us.  We must first surrender them to him.  He will require us to trust and rely on Him as we strive to weather the magnetic pull of our brains and hormones.  He will let the wind blow on our branches to strengthen our roots.  And then, after we have proved to Him that we are serious in our surrender, He will take those heavy burdens from us and toss them aside and look upon us with tender eyes and simply say as He embraces us: "Well done.  Well done, indeed."

2 comments:

  1. Brilliant, as usual. I hate triggers!! Now, si x weeks into recovery I'm finding new ones (like even this list, I didn't read it twice)I never had before! But, I'm surrendering my will, and turning away consistently. Your insights are especially helpful to me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yep that's about how it works. Your brain will seek out new ways to get it's fix. This list was triggery for me too! Hah. But, I felt it was important to address.

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Thank you for sharing a moment with me:-)

Ezekiel 34:11-12,16

"For thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I, even I, will both search my sheep, and seek them out. As a shepherd seeketh out his flock in the day that he is among his sheep that are scattered; so will I seek out my sheep, and will deliver them out of all places where they have been scattered in the cloudy and dark day. I will seek that which was lost, and bring again that which was driven away, and will bind up that which was broken, and will strengthen that which was sick"