I’m sure a bunch of my neighbors have probably rolled their eyes many of the times they’ve seen me outside picking up leaves in my yard, which has been almost daily over the past month or so. While from their perspective, I can totally understand why they might think this action is a little ludicrous, what they don’t know is that it’s been a far healthier outlet for me as compared to some of the other actions I might otherwise do or be tempted to engage in.
You see, for active addicts, there always seems to be an inexhaustible amount of energy that’s placed into seeking the substance of their addiction. But once sobriety is found, it’s not like that well of energy simply disappears, as it’s still there within them waiting to be utilized somewhere else. Unfortunately, many recovering addicts never realize this and how crucial it is to find a healthy outlet for themselves. Instead, their tendency seems to be an expelling of that energy into some other addiction.
While I have ultimately realized this myself, dispensing that energy into something that supports my well-being like regular workouts at the gym or some type of part-time to full-time job just hasn’t been in the cards due to my ongoing struggles with my health and healing. So, I’ve had to become a little creative in finding things to pour that energy into, because when I haven’t, and chose to sit idle and do nothing instead, it’s never ended well.
For example, once I found sobriety from alcohol and drugs, I sat idle for a while and eventually found myself transferring all that energy into the beginning stages of a sex and love addiction that began with looking at a little pornography here and there. I’ve known of plenty of others who sat idle as well more than not and ended up becoming addicted to smoking or vaping, consuming caffeine, overeating, gambling, and more. But none of these of course are healthy outlets.
A healthy outlet is something one does in recovery that put quite simply, stimulates the mind in a healthy way. Writing in this blog is just one of those healthy outlets for me. So is working on puzzles, coloring in my adult coloring book, and of course taking care of my yard and all those leaves falling onto it.
To be perfectly honest, I’d rather pour that deep well of energy within me any day into an obsession of keeping my yard clean, than picking up a joint to take the edge off or surfing the web for some naked image of someone I find attractive. Both of those would be unhealthy outlets that only lead me directly away from the spiritual path I want to be on, that being towards God.
Of course, I should mention there are numerous other healthy outlets out there. From hunting and fishing, to working on model trains and cars, to painting, to tinkering with electronics, to bird-watching, and well, I’m sure you get the point. The sky’s the limit, so long as the outlet is one that stimulates that squirrely addict brain in a beneficial way.
So, if you happen to be a recovering addict who has found yourself teeter-tottering into unhealthy behaviors or other addictions as of late, know there is a solution to preventing this. Find some healthy outlets to engage your mind into and I’m sure in doing so, you’ll not only start feeling a whole lot better in life, but you’re also find yourself on a strong spiritual path of recovery that’s definitely moving towards God and not away…
Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson