The mentality of “all or nothing” resonates with many people with thoughts of if I cannot have it all why should I even try at all. If my plans do not go my way, then I might as well hit the highway. Most of the time people see their actions in black and white instead of being able to appreciate the gray area. This kind of thinking is a defense mechanism to save face from their pride and ego.
In recovery, this happens a bunch when someone relapses. Instead of trying to make the situation better, they will sabotage themselves with a mentality of since I cannot stay clean and sober, I will just totally stop trying. No one is supporting me, so I will show them by just not doing anything at all.
The problem with that type of thinking is that this individual is probably trying to make a point to get back at an intended target by drinking and use at them. What really happens is they only punish themselves. Their solution gets completely muddled because during this time of impending doom they are unable to see the forest for the trees. They are unwilling to get past the difficult times they have endured and move on because of the stubbornness they feel with their self-perceived failure.
Your self-worth is typically wrapped up in your job, personal relationships, or what others think of you. So, when the areas of your life do not go the way you think they should, you can either try harder to make things better or do what most people seem to do these days and give up because it seems to be the easier and softer way. Trying your best in a tough situation can give you the strength that you need to push through. During this process you can gain some self-esteem and confidence in what you are doing. The thing to remember is that you cannot fail at anything if you are continuously trying your very best.
The “all or nothing” perspective can evolve into another type of viewpoint such as “when one door closes another will open” or “when everything seems broken, it is just your Higher Power putting the pieces back together for you in a better way”. Whatever you choose as your mantra, just remember that failure is a part of life for everyone at some point or another. Failure does not mean finality. The lesson is to pick a new path, journey, approach, way, or opportunity because you can start over anytime you choose.
If you or someone you know is struggling with drugs and alcohol, Renewal Recovery Solutions can help you to become sober. Our focus is to stimulate the thoughts and emotions that are needed to awaken the uniquely positive characteristics of each individual. Our staff is here to help our clients reach their highest potential in recovery.
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