Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Tonight's Group's Homework

Listening to: Rolling Stones, Let It Bleed

Of all my DUI groups, my Tuesday night group is my favorite. They're active, motivated, they have a kind of energy that feeds itself. They make me stop and think. We have fun.

The state of Colorado gives me a kind of curriculum to follow but the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Division gives me some latitude on how to run those groups. Tonight, I started on to the theme of Self-Esteem. The past few weeks I've been taking baby steps towards this topic because, really, no one likes to think their self-esteem is shot to shit. Everyone wants everyone else to believe that everything's just peachy.

Get a DUI and things change, profoundly. None of it good but unless you want to do jail time, it gets done. Unfortunately, little else gets done, the need to work extra to pay fines or arrange how to get to therapy groups takes away from life. That's good, in fact, I'd prefer the DUI laws were harsher, like in Europe (insert comment here about how Europe has better mass transportation and hey, open a whole new can of worms) but it's bad in that what we normally do to get validated gets neglected.

Enough psychobabble. I charged my group to set some little goals, accomplish them, create validation - you probably see where I was going with that. One clown said his goal was to get more sleep and he couldn't accomplish that but otherwise, everyone was earnest in their assignment. And everyone agreed, I did it and I feel better.

We are what we do.

Kind of the emphasis of my next-to-last post 'love' the verb, not the noun, participate and love that. With this week's group, I said take that accomplishment and mark it up as how it defines you because 'you' are the sum total of your experiences. What you've become as a result. Where you live, what race, religion, team you allign yourself to, what you drive - diagram your identity. Take away your name, could people know it was you by these qualities?

I have a file, "100 Things About Me", the original meme, and I'll probably die before mine is finished. "About me" shifts because I do, I deide to and then I do it. Or I don't. I - the 'I' that I believe in - is, in essence, a shadow dancing on the wall. Or at least, that's what I tell the charges in my group.

What's you favortite color? Do you look good in green? What's your favorite song? Are you becoming or are you just are?

Just are. What a wretched place to be.


Chip said...

yes, it's about process, not goals, it's the voyage, not the destination. If we were already there the trip would be over. And that's no fun!

seeingdouble said...

I think that taking your eye off your goal is what leads one to make shitty decisions such as DUI. My ex got a couple DUIs during our custody battle, and it cost him everything. Since he had lost his original "goal", he decided to continue making poor decisions until his entire world came crashing down. He's 24, and his life will never be the same. I have to wonder if some people's blatant disregard for consequences stems from the complete lack of goals, or just immaturity. Also, when you work so hard to achieve a goal, but are not making any progress for whatever reason, just how profoundly does that affect you? I guess focusing on the smaller accomplishments is the only way to combat that, but it's easy to see how depression creeps in. Sorry about the rambling, Jim... your post was excellent and thought provoking.

Nino the Mindboggler said...

Thank you, I appreciate your comments.

I firmly believe self-centeredness is the worst cancer in society. Thinking only of our own pleasure without any consideration for the consequences of those actions or who it effects.