As Linda woke up to the fact that her mind was trying to help her, but that its conclusions were not accurate or helpful, she was less fooled by it. She saw the wisdom in her habit.
She realized that she didn’t have a hard time kicking the wine habit because she was weak or seriously addicted, it was hard because her brain mistakenly equated wine with peace.
Because Linda is peace, there was huge momentum pulling her there.
She began to see her urges for wine more like the directives of a machine that thinks it’s helping her, but that truly isn’t. Her mind was like a toddler “helping” bake cookies. There ends up being more flour on the floor than in the mixer, but the child thinks they are helping. That’s how our brain “helps” in the case of habits and addictions.
What if wine wasn’t the magic potion Linda thought it was, that it only numbed her thinking? With her thinking numbed, she could feel who-she-is. It was her own always-there essence that she yearned to feel.
Habits are not flaws or signs of weakness. They are our best attempt to find our way to the peace and expansiveness that is who-we-are. They distract us from what is in the way. The only thing ever in the way of who-we-are is psychological experience that appears real.
– Excerpt adapted from Just a Thought: A No-Willpower Approach to End Self-Doubt and Make Peace with Your Mind. Available now.