Hey Architects! I wanted to share a powerful discovery I made along my journey that once I started applying it, changed my life forever. One of the reasons I drank was for emotional management. Whenever something bad would happen I would instantly get overwhelmed by anger, frustration, or if it was something that happened often feelings of giving up.
When this would happen (more often than I would like to admit) it would completely ruin the rest of my day. While it was happening I would feel the blood rush to my face, that sudden flash of adrenaline and my heart would start racing. I could feel my whole body tense up and it felt like I was like a pressure cooker just about to burst at any moment.
The thing is, even if I had time after the incident I would still hold onto that feeling. Let’s say I was at work and was working very hard on a project only to finally finish it and bring to to the people who requested it to be told they didn’t need it anymore. I would be FURIOUS in the moment but I would NOT let it go. I would focus on it all day, letting it keep me angry. I would play out different scenarios in my head and fantasize about things I should have said or ways to “get back at them.” As soon as work was done I’d pickup booze on the way home and start drinking as soon as I got home to help deal with my stress.
But then a concept was introduced to me in a weird way. When I was drinking I used to play poker sometimes (I know right? Drinking and gambling – winning combo) and I was watching a video of someone playing and they explained a concept known in that world as “variance.”
The idea is that you can do everything right but after you have made your decision and action – the rest is no longer in your control. You can push all your chips in with a 90% chance of winning it all but still lose 1 out of 10 times. The point is – you can’t focus on things that are outside of your control.
I used to have my happiness depend on the outcome of any situation I was in. I would put in the effort and then if it didn’t go the way I had planned I would become an emotional train-wreck. You can’t let your happiness depend on things that you have no influence over.
I don’t drink or play poker anymore but this idea still sticks with me. Now instead of letting my emotions go up and down with the random events of the world, I only focus on how hard I tried. Did I make the right choices? Did I do everything in my power to do the best thing? If so, then regardless of what happens after – I can be happy with myself.
The ups and downs of life can push you to the point of “emotional threshold” and with a few bad things stacked on top of each other – push you to relapse. If you want to read a technique I use to avoid that enter your info below for a free ebook.
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