How to Become a Love Warrior
Center for Change
We all have 'junk' in our lives. Unless we get rid of all those things that no longer serve us, we carry them with us everywhere we go. Some of us (unconsciously) choose food, alcohol or drugs as a way to cope, but, eventually, they add even more weight. It’s exhausting. So we choose to numb ourselves further to avoid feeling or confronting our problems. It’s normal to try to avoid stress, but engaging in self-destructive behaviors won't make it go away. It actually makes things worse.
So, what can we do? One of the best approaches is to learn from others with first-hand experience. Glennon Doyle, the New York Times bestselling author of the book Love Warrior, was recently the keynote speaker at the Innovations in Behavioral Healthcare Conference in Nashville, Tennessee. Throughout her talk (as in her other writing), Doyle wears her heart on her sleeve, talking openly about her history of addiction. At first, sobriety is simply not drinking alcohol, she says. But as she learned to be still and not numb herself, her views on sobriety changed. For Doyle, sobriety now has three layers to it.
Sobriety Leads to Truth
First, sobriety is a path that leads to truth. It leads to love. It can even lead to God, which — for some people — means sobriety can be a form of religion. Sobriety is a way to live life on its own terms, feeling the good and the bad instead of numbing ourselves from them. It means not ignoring anything, but facing it, taking things as they come.
Sobriety Brings Our Life Together
Sobriety also becomes connected to our integrity. It’s a way to integrate our outer life with our inner life. There is no longer a divide with our 'junk' on one side and an unrealistic version of ourselves on the other. Once we come to grips with this, merging our outer life and inner life, we can finally be at peace.
“As an alcoholic in recovery, I love knowing I will never have to doubt myself, my instincts, and my power. I love the clarity of sobriety. I love how much I have gotten to know myself and the process of realizing and embracing what a wonderful person I am.” – Emily C. shares on her recovery journey with Heroes in Recovery.
Sobriety Leads to Healthy Boundaries
Sobriety is also a way to protect yourself by creating and setting healthy boundaries. As you learn what triggers cravings, you can learn how to cope with them or even minimize those things in your life so you can reconnect with who you really are. You can choose to say “no” to things that drag you down and instead do things that bring you peace. As you make peace with yourself, a funny thing begins to happen: You can start to love yourself. And that enables you to love others too.
That doesn’t necessarily mean that you throw your whole life wide open on Facebook or Twitter, especially when you’re facing struggles. In those cases, Doyle advises that you share with a few carefully chosen friends and family members, privately. But why, if sobriety is all about transparency? Because when you share a struggle while it’s happening, you aren’t thinking clearly.
Think of it like this, Doyle suggests: The best way to be a “love warrior” is to share from your scars, not your open wounds. It’s great to be authentic and honest, but your open wounds are still fresh. You need to let them heal before you can use them to serve someone else. With time and healing, perspective and wisdom follow.
Sobriety is the key to feeling again and caring for yourself. But be warned: It’s not an instant fix or a one-time event. It’s a way of living you have to choose every single day.
(Watch Glennon Doyle’s conversation with Foundations Chief Marketing Officer Lee Pepper at the IIBH conference here.)
¹ "What is Sobriety?" BlackBearRehab.com, July 24, 2017.
Center for Change. Center for Change was founded on October 28, 1994, by a team of psychologists and a physician with a long history together. On that day, Center for Change began to live out its mission to heal women from the inside out. From those first days, Center for Change began to design the current facility and develop its core treatment programs. A handpicked team of experts forms the backbone of what we do, and they are committed to helping each girl or woman get back their life and restore a sense of freedom that may have been absent for far too long.
The Center is licensed with the State of Utah as a Specialty Psychiatric Hospital, and in April 1998, Center for Change received accreditation from The Joint Commission. This accreditation is limited to top organizations delivering high levels of patient service, reducing patient risk and creating an environment for continuous improvement. The Joint Commission has recognized Center for Change for its high standards of patient care and commitment to ongoing education.
The message of “hope is real” can be found woven through the entirety of the treatment experience at Center for Change. From those early days, our primary goal hasn’t changed: to improve lives. And research proves we’re doing just that. A Center for Change study showed that patients were able to significantly decrease negative behaviors and improve body image and health-management skills.
We understand the dilemma in trying to find the best care available for you or your loved one. So many options can make it difficult to decide which one is right for your situation. At Center for Change, our holistic approach, rigorous medical and clinical program, wide range of levels of care and nurturing environment set us apart. Our extensive team includes seasoned medical, psychological and nutritional experts who have been carefully selected because of their expertise in treating both the outward symptoms and underlying causes of eating disorders. Call us and get your life back.