Advertisement

The Bliss Blog

The Bliss Blog

The Definition of Insanity

 

You may have heard it said that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over, expecting different results. Today I heard an even more succinct translation of that colloquialism. This person who is in recovery from addiction stated, laughing at the irony,  that insanity is knowing what the outcome will be; same as it ever was and making the decision to engage in the self destructive behavior anyway. He wasn’t sure what led him to fall into that  literal and symbolic hole again and again. I wondered as I sat with him about the nature of this learned behavior and what it would take to him make better choices. I often share with my clients this poignant poem written by Portia Nelson:

Advertisement

Autobiography In Five Short Chapters

Chapter I

I walk down the street. There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.   I fall in.   I am lost… I am hopeless.   It isn’t my fault.   It takes forever to find a way out.

Chapter II

I walk down the same street.   There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.   I pretend I don’t see it.   I fall in again.   I can’t believe I am in this same place.   But it isn’t my fault.   It still takes a long time to get out.

Advertisement

 Chapter III  

I walk down the same street.   There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.   I see it there.   I still fall in… it’s a habit… but,   my eyes are open.   I know where I am.   It is my fault.   I get out immediately.

 Chapter IV  

I walk down the same street.   There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.   I walk around it.

Chapter V

Advertisement

I walk down another street.

How many times have I walked down the same street, imagining that THIS time, the sidewalk will be nice and smooth, no bumps or pitfalls?  Plenty. I (like all of us) repeat patterns because they are familiar and I think that is the way I am expected to interact with others, or perceive a situation. It is when I reflect on outcome that I am able to honestly assess what is in my best interest. It is that classic ‘fearless and searching moral inventory in 12 step parlance,’ that each of us, regardless of if we are in recovery with which we are called on to engage. I do it every day, asking myself if I have brought the best of who I am into each encounter with a fellow being. Gratefully, mostly I have been able to say a hardy YES! I guess that makes me (relatively) sane.

Previous Posts

What Sustains You?
“All shall be well, and all shall be well and all manner of thing shall be well.”- Julian of Norwich In your darkest, most frightening moments, what sustains you? What has you knowing that all is well?  For me, it is a deep spiritual ...

posted 11:02:08pm Aug. 26, 2015 | read full post »

Birthing A New Book
      My first book called The Bliss Mistress Guide To Transforming The Ordinary Into The Extraordinary came into the world in 2011, not quite like Venus fully formed from sea foam, but rather resembling a human baby, ...

posted 8:04:18pm Aug. 25, 2015 | read full post »

Luscious Lessons Learned on a Jamaican Sojourn
As I am writing this, the hours until departure from my Jamaican vacay are ticking away. I am not woeful or wistful, wishing it could be longer. It was perfectly timed to begin and perfectly timed to end. 24 hours from now, my plane will be ...

posted 7:49:46pm Aug. 22, 2015 | read full post »

Beach Yoga
After being in Jamaica for a few glorious days so far, I am learning that I am able to 'tolerate' a great deal of pleasure. I use that particular word, because for such a long time, I have been in 'go-mode,' not even recognizing the speed at ...

posted 9:02:42am Aug. 19, 2015 | read full post »

Happy Tappy Yoga
I have been a yoga student since 2004, enjoying my time both on and off the mat. I have referred to it as my magic carpet that takes me on all sorts of adventures. Here in Jamaica, I left my own purple mat at home and used one from the yoga room ...

posted 12:46:43am Aug. 18, 2015 | read full post »

Advertisement


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.