The ability to accept change helps those in recovery to become less anxious, less stressed and less prone to relapse. Tara Brach’s MindPod Network Podcast (Episode #35: Awakening Through Change and Loss) is a powerful reminder of how mindlessness and the lack of acceptance of change generates one’s own suffering.
This suffering affects our marriage, our job, our friendships and our personal health. Tara is a powerful speaker and leader in the Mindfulness practices outlined in Buddhism. This particular podcast speaks to the following key points of why acceptance helps us end our suffering:
- We cannot love ourselves or others if we are tense and in fear or constantly fearing change
- We are encouraged to look at our fear and our source of angst and discomfort
- We create more fear and angst if we try to control a particular painful situation or manipulate its outcome
- We are encouraged to greet the fear with a full sense of presence, tenderness and loving kindness
- We search for healthy solutions to our situation or find help from others
- We attempt to stay out of denial of our pain or our inability to control a situation or other person
- We avoid blaming ourselves or others; blaming is a sign of not accepting or not tolerating
Tara Brach reminds the listener that the addict often has not responded to change, loss or suffering with loving kindness. The drug addict or alcoholic who is still using substances chooses to run from the pain and toward drugs in the attempt to reject or control the pain. Are we still running from pain when we are in sobriety? Tara encourages us to practice a new, healthier way of responding to situations. We practice this new way of honoring our pain through prayer, meditation and learning more about the benefits of Mindfulness.
I encourage our AToN community to visit this particular podcast and be reminded of the benefits of practicing mindfulness, daily. The recovering individual is likelier to choose sobriety when establishing a healthier response to change.
Chris McDuffie, MA RADT-1
Chemical Dependency Counselor
AToN Center 888-535-1516