Our dreams lay awash upon the debacle of a weaker moment. Scarcely do we otherwise see that ‘other’ reward that beckons ‘just over there’ in the immediacy of these times.
Two realities and two entirely different outcomes. The reality of goal achievement is the circumstance of patience, especially during the pains of discomfort required for the construction of change.
We have to ask ourselves during a relapse: “What reward has just consumed my focus?”
We do everything it seems for the rewards we hope to gain. The trouble with that equation is the rewards that stand further off are quite often beyond our reach, because we desire more instant gratification. And for most of us, the more instant reward is constantly thrust into our faces, beleaguering our otherwise solid resolve.
Two Different Foci
Many try their darnedest to focus hard on the potential for relapse in fear of that moment as it will perhaps sweep over them. They pray for strength for the moment, somewhat scared for what that might entail. It’s truly a terrifying thought.
A better focus would be to firmly retrain the mind to grab a hold of the longer-term vision and simply think on the process to get there, meditating on it lastingly. Additionally, we’d benefit from a plan that counters for a waning of medium-term interest which is the real danger once we’re beyond the shores of the initial rocky ground. This is a key in maintaining the steady resolve that got us off to a good start in the first place.
We will do best if we can re-engineer our reward systems, taking note on loan of the joy we will have on goal achievement, as if we can imagine it in all its brilliance.
This way we’re preparing our minds for the acquisition of the achieved goal, and we’re preparing also for the life thereafter; a situation that will require even more planning and wisdom to sustain it. Of course, this will require some imagination if straight rest-of-life abstinence is the both the process for achieving the goal and the goal itself.
One Moment at a Time
Hardly a better way of achieving our goals or of living life itself—and the mastery of same—is to live life in the moment and reconcile each decision we make to mature reason, which is the longer-term imperative.
It sounds simple and rarely is more difficult. It’s easy to understand, and a whole lot harder to live.
But, still, there it is—right before us. Taking life one scoopful at a time is the best way; indeed, for many it’s the only way.
© 2010 S. J. Wickham.